After 16 hours driving the truck following Tim at the wheel of the van (after last year's jack-knifing incident, I was too chicken to pull the trailer), we hit the gravel of our Maine driveway. No traffic, no accidents, very few potty breaks all contributed to our speedy arrival. However, the house is not quite as finished as I thought, the schoolroom floor is not installed and there seems to be several weeks worth of work left before we can move in. So, instead of hoofing furniture across the pavement from the garage apartment, we have spent the past few days mowing, tilling, and planting.
In just 24 hours Tim rototilled my garden and I discovered the lovely Maine phenomenon of blackflies. Yes, I've heard the warnings and the songs, seen the bumper stickers, but it is very disconcerting to see your children covered in bloody welts behind their ears and on the back of their necks. I got hit many times as well, realizing once their season ends in a week or so, it will be just in time for the deer flies and mosquitoes to hatch.
But I have pushed onward and put in tomato and cucumber seedlings and planted corn, onions, pumpkin, lettuce, peas, beans, and various flowers. The kids raked cartloads of grass clippings to mulch the garden. While I was hammering in stakes for the tomato cages, I swung poorly and hit my mouth, busting my lip and chipping one of my teeth. A quick visit to the local dentist made my tooth as good as new and Tim took over stake pounding duties (note: next time buy the shorter stakes). We have all been collapsing into bed by 9pm with no one, save myself, emerging from their room before 8am. Julia Ellen is getting so much fresh air and exercise (especially attempting to swipe away the blackflies) that the previous 2 hour nightly effort to get her to go to sleep has disappeared.
At this rate I will have our garden put in by Saturday, the children's school finished by next Wednesday, and be volunteering to help the builder lay floor by Thursday. Perhaps not. I'll be glad to take a break from my current frantic pace and relax long enough to enjoy our summer in Maine.