Last time I cut the lawn I noticed that it looked very scraggly around the edges and remembered that Michele did something in addition to just using the lawnmower. I looked in the garage and, low and behold, we have an electric weedwacker. During our Saturday morning call, I asked my dad how this tool functions. He advised me to wait until Michele comes home to teach me how to use it because he was afraid I might wack down my flowers (a fear I shared). Now, here's the problem: I want the yard to look beautiful WHEN Michele comes home, not AFTER. But I of course I listened to my dad and didn't attempt to use the weed wacker (at least not at first).
After our call, I went out and started to work on the yard (with no intention of weed wacking). Totally unsolicited, Rita came out and said, "Michelle, you can't just cut the grass. You need to trim around the edges with that wacker." (I swear it was the first thing she said to me!) I responded, "I know, but I don't know how to use it (and my dad told me not to try)." She kindly offered to do it for me - I love my neighbor! It actually went very well, except for the weed wacking of my leg. You may be wondering how my leg got weed wacked if I didn't use the weed wacker. That's a good question. You see, Rita offered to use the wacker, but couldn't see how to connect the extention cord - she wasn't wearing her glasses - so I did that part. Unfortunately, I had the wacking string too close to my leg and was holding down the start button when I plugged in the cord. It only wacked me a little - didn't even break the skin!
Rita did a very good job and after watching her, I took a shot at the backyard - no flowers to worry about cutting down. I did really well, if I do say so myself. The yards look fabulous! Rita and I also transplanted two lilac bushes from her backyard to my front yard. Her mother had planted several a few years back, but these two were too close to a fence. They now are placed to become a small hedgerow between our house and the neighbors on the other side. Lilacs are a big deal in Rochester, so now I feel like we're real Rochesterians! And I feel like a real gardener: I wacked weeds, cut grass, dug up and re-planted bushes, looked at growth in my veggie bed, got rid of dead wood from around my honeysuckle in the back, and removed two dandilions from my flower bed in front. I'm not a pro yet, but I am so much better than I ever thought I would be . . . and I'm having a lot of fun!