Seeing as we had almost no backyard to speak of at the old house...
The reason we had a second child: so Mommy wouldn't have to pitch.
...we wanted a home where our kids could run and play and get muddy, doing the things little boys like to do. Along with four bedrooms, office, family room with fireplace and wet bar, this house had everything we were looking for.
Once the weather got warmer this spring, we set about building our backyard little boy paradise.
A "Boyadice" if you will. "Boytopia"?
Santa brought our boys a 15' trampoline for Christmas. (Santa, would you please, next time you decide to leave a 300 lb gift, actually wrap it and deliver it under the tree? Cuz being home alone on Christmas Eve sucked enough without having to drag a giant heavy box across the slushy mess that was the garage floor and wrapping the side the kids would see first at 12:30 in the morning. 'kay thanks.)
We brought with us, from the old house, a small sandbox shaped like a turtle, for which we got brand new sand. And we finally had enough room for the hugetastic wooden play set my aunt and uncle had been trying to get us to take off their hands since our children were born. (Seriously, their youngest is 17. Our kids were probably the only ones who still used that thing anyway.)
There is a deck off the kitchen where our boys have a picnic table for snacks, and a patio slab down below where they spend hours drawing (sometimes on themselves) with chalk or riding their bikes in circles around the fire-pit.
Add to that we also more than enough open yard for baseball and imaginary sword games and you can practically see the beams of sunlight kissing the tops of the wooden fence as angels sing praises to The Yard.
Only, a few weeks ago, there was an overtaking of near epic proportions.
Nick trotted into the kitchen one day to tell me, "Mom - there's bees over there. By the swingset? LOTS of BEES!" I went outside to investigate and sure enough there were. An entire horde of bees.
I texted the Hubster. Because that is how one deals with such situations. If garbage, bees or any other small varmints are involved it becomes man work.
Later, he's home and he goes out to investigate, only to come back and confirm, "Yep. Lots of bees. More bees inside than what you can see outside. I'll have to get rid of them."
Uh, you think? I suggested he call someone, and even was nice enough to look up the numbers of a few local exterminators.
Days passed. He claimed to have called and I claimed to believe him. Finally, on Facebook, a friend suggested that he just buy a few bug bombs and throw one in at night while they were less active.
Meanwhile, our grass was growing as grass does in the summer. We had gotten a lot of rain and that long grass held mosquitos. Lots and lots of mosquitos. So many that our backyard Boytopia became nearly unusable. Cuz see, our riding mower was in that shed.
Don't you wish your kids were awesome enough to think to put an
entire bag of plastic balls on the trampoline like mine?
Which was a shame. Both because we weren't enjoying our new backyard, and because Mommy had to put up with poor little boys being eaten alive by mosquitos and then finding things to entertain them away from the Big Backyard.
Finally finally the stars aligned and Hubster had a day where he was not either working during the nighttime hours or sleeping to make up for all the days that he did. He armed himself with more bug bombs than was completely necessary and he set off across the yard toward the shed, RAID in hand.
Now, if I were any sort of good blogger at all, I would have been out on that deck with my camera on a tripod, capturing the essence of the moment. But I'm not. I'm a slacker Mom wanna-be-writer who works full time outside the house, and so I missed the moment where he armed himself with enough insectiside to kill the entire neighborhood's pests and handed the phone to our five-year-old child with instructions that he call 9-1-1 if Daddy was getting stung by bees and couldn't make it back to the house.
I shudder to think about how much therapy that child is going to need.
Did I mention my husband is, oh, a cop? A big ol' manly man of a man? Who fishes and hunts and kills stuff with guns and does so cuz he likes it?
And yet there he was, acting like he was going up against blue aliens or something. (Go to about :38 in that video. That is what I imagine he looked like while walking across the yard.)
BUT -- I was there a few days later when he went to make sure they were dead.
Cuz, see, I had had it. I was at the point that I was going to call the damned National Guard in to bomb our stupid shed and all its bees and get a goat to come eat the grass before I'd wait another day to have the grass cut. (Does the National Guard ever get to bomb anything? I'd bet they might do it for free just cuz they'd get to finally bomb something. But, again, I digress...)
So I approached the Hubster in my sweetest most "I'm your lovely wife" voice and threatened that if he didn't take care of the bees or the grass that really bad things would happen -- or really GOOD things would FAIL to happen. Most commonly along the lines of his dirty underwear staying dirty. Which, I'm surprised he didn't laugh at, seing as he does as much laundry as I do.
So off he went, to the shed, armed again with a can of RAID.
I think he used the whole can, no lie.
I like to think that bees are to The Hubster what snakes are to Indiana Jones.
Regardless, the bees are gone and The Yard has been returned to its former glory.
Just in time for fall.