You know the one thing that I really wish could be given as a baby shower gift? Patience. Because there is nothing more essential when dealing with children. And I most certainly do not have enough of it.
Late this afternoon I got A. to do some tilling for me in the garden in preparation for a planting marathon this weekend. Cubby, of course, was out there with us, wandering around, digging with his big metal spoon and exploring the jungle that is the blackberry patch. Immediately after the tilling I re-planted some volunteer broccoli plants that I had saved from tiller annihilation. Then A. disappeared to continue work on his stone wall by the cellar door and, since Cubby was still happy in the garden, I decided to plant some beans.
Cubby loves to eat beans, so I thought he would like to help me plant them. On my own, the job would have taken me approximately five minutes. With Cubby's help it took . . . considerably longer than five minutes. The following phrases were uttered at least 25 times each, in varying combinations, in the fifteen minutes or so we spent crouching down, with me poking holes at intervals for Cubby to drop his selected bean into.
"Just one bean in each hole. Just one."
"Put it where my finger is, Cubby."
"No, we already put a bean in that hole."
"Don't step in the row we already planted."
Over and over and over and over, as I crouched there with beans in my hand (do you know how hard it is to crouch for any period of time when seven months pregnant? yeah), burning in the surprisingly hot sun, and really, really wishing I could have just planted the damned things by myself and gotten it over with so I could go inside and make dinner.
And then, after we were done with the planting, there were the usual garden admonitions: "No, don't step there; we just planted that." "Don't dig there; we just planted that." "Don't run over the asparagus plants." "Don't step there. THERE. DON'T STEP THERE." "Go dig over by the tiller, okay?" "Don't touch the tiller. It might be hot."
I tried hard to not sound impatient, but I'm not sure I succeeded. However, Cubby did help me plant both long rows of beans with apparent concentration and enjoyment, so I think it was worthwhile.
But seriously. Someone send me another supply of patience for this next kid. I could sure use some.
Current lamb count: Eighteen--eleven girls, seven boys, and one ewe left to deliver.
Oh, and P.S. Mia caught (and, presumably, ate) another woodchuck today that she found somewhere behind the forsythias. I don't know where they're coming from, but they're not receiving much of a welcome around here. My garden is very grateful to the dogs.