Garden work

I feel like I've really been focusing on everything BUT the "work" part of work-at-home. Much of that is because my work is very, very flexible. I write and I edit, and much of it can be done in 45-minute spurts throughout the day, adding up to an average of five hours or so. And I know I'm lucky to have it.

I was thinking about this because it was on my schedule today to write about kids and the garden. Last year at this time, I was trying to put a garden together using three-hour chunks of time on the weekend. However, it would get so weedy during the week that by the time Saturday came, it would look so discouraging it would hardly be fun. And while I was gardening, trying to get a break from my nightmare job (someday I'll blog about it), all I could think of was how the weekend was flying by and how awful Monday was going to be.

This past weekend, both Mara and Ian came to help me in the garden. I educated them on what plants to pull and which ones to leave. Ian got to wield impressively dangerous-looking clippers and go after the grass edging the garden. Mara was in charge of the dandelion-digger and spent much more time than I would have surgically removing weeds. Work stopped whenever a worm appeared, or an interesting bug, or a pretty rock (uh, yeah, I have a ton of rocks in my garden).

It's good for kids to get dirty and be comfortable among growing things. If you don't have a garden, try container gardening. If you're low-maintenance, plant pumpkins, sunflower seeds, peas and radishes. It's certainly not too late to plant now (up here, I haven't even put in my annuals yet).

I push flexibility in working at home a lot on this blog and sometimes I feel like I give the impression that I don't work a lot. That's not the case at all -- my old job was tearing me up so badly that I am full of gratitude to be able to spend time at home with my family, and I want to remind people that you don't have to be your own abusive taskmasker just because you work at home.

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