So after dinner on the first day of Work Camp, feeling pretty proud of ourselves, Nancy Jo (aka Mom) announced that she didn't have to go into work until 2 the next day. So this meant that she would be joining us for the first part of our second work day. Which was also code for "If you think you were going to do anything halfway....think again."
We rolled out of bed at 7:18ish and crawled our weary, achy bodies to the kitchen, where coffee and diet coke were stocked...(now that I think about it, she was probably putting something in our drinks to make us giddy with delight to be working again). We plopped down at the table, just in time to see Nancy Jo was already outside. Good grief woman! You must be taking your vitamins!!!
We both opted to skip breakfast and headed outside, where mom was eyeing the placement of the potting bench that we had moved yesterday (see Part 1 of this saga). A little to the left, a little to the right, out just a little bit, right there...just a smidge this way.... Finally we got it right where she wanted it and then we painted it radiant red. We also painted a smaller potting bench to match it. At this point the humidity was like 10000%. I wondered if the paint would dry before we left on Friday.
Then she introduced us to 60 or so of her favorite plant friends that needed to be planted....but before they could be planted she needed a few other plants dug up and replanted on the bank in the backyard. Have you ever dug up and replanted juniper? Yeah, me neither...until now. Pam did most of this work because she is like the amazon woman and can handle a pointed shovel like no other lady I've ever met. I started on the smaller shrubs and moving the lantana that mom wanted placed elsewhere. Did I mention this was all taking place on a 75 degree angle bank? And that it had been pouring down rain for the last week? And that the dirt in Georgia is red like clay? And that the pine straw mulch is slippery like wet spinach when it's wet?
We slipped and slid all over the place all morning long. Oh and then there's the small issue of the poison ivy and mosquitoes and tics that decided to attack us with a vengeance. Yep, more on that later.
We were almost through with most of the planting when the sky fell out. For the first few minutes I believed it was going to just roll over so we stayed out and planted a few more things, cleaned up around the freshly painted potting bench (and yes, it was getting wet in the rain) gathered trash, picked up tools and then we ran for cover like chickens being chased by a pitch fork. We looked pitiful.
We sat comfortably on the front porch enjoying the completed project of yesterday...waiting for the rain to pass. Mom went in to get ready for work, Pop had physical therapy and finally the rain stopped. Only by this time, I was needed as a chauffeur for Pop to go to the store. So, Pam finished planting the cursed juniper and I headed for the shower.
This was where I discovered my first tic. Yes, the blood-sucking, skin pinching bug. This was also where I became aware of the itchiness on my face and arms. This was where I realized that while I might have skipped breakfast, the mosquitoes had made quite a meal of me.
By the time I took Pop to the store and got home, Pam was in the same shape as me...itchy. She drugged up on Benadryl and practically bathed in Dawn dishwashing detergent. I waited on the Benadryl but lathered up with the Dawn and applied some ant-itch cream. Seriously, I'm still itching. Right now. Itch. Itch. Itch. Someone suggested I might need a good flea dip. I'm thinking about it.
By the time mom returned home from work, the yard looked pretty good. Pam had gotten things mulched with more dry pine straw. We had things picked up. Dinner was ready and we were too drugged to remember much of anything. Frankly at that point I was on auto pilot.
The rest of the trip....the parts about actually taking care of my step dad are coming soon. But to ignore the enormous amount of work that transpired during this visit would have been a travesty. Like missing your favorite I Love Lucy episode. I liken the work we accomplished similar to that which a small army does over the course of 2 weeks. Get a coupla women together with a vision and a little gumption and see how soon they can get it done!
Here's a few pictures: