I have three loads of laundry on the line, two kids sacked out after playing in the wading pool (well, Wesley watched), newly-planted tomatoes, squash, flowers, and peppers, and my back porch–wait for it–is clean!
Our porch has always been the dumping-ground for all things homeless. Broom doesn’t store anywhere? Stick it on the porch. Extra chair in the way? On the porch. Box of annoying basement things that are mostly trash but maybe some should not be thrown out? On the porch. In our defense, I don’t think we started it. I think it was the way that my parents and in-laws handled the space problems of helping us move in. Things HAD to go somewhere, so they went out there. (Especially since, when we have houseguests, we actually eat at the table…which means, again, things have to go SOMEwhere.) This is a reasonable way to unpack (and allow me to register here my gratitude for the help unpacking, especially since we have 27 bookcases). It is not, however, a reasonable way to live.
Not anymore. I decided that I spend too much time out there during the summer to tolerate it. So I went on a mad porch-cleaning mission. Some things that I found:
* my mop, which someone put out there and which fell over the edge into the bushes (?).
* One of the sealing discs for Wesley’s bottles.
* 6,000 caterpillars (they are not actually on the porch but in the bush beside it).
* four wastebaskets. I don’t know why. They’re plastic. I hosed them off and bleached them and now they are drying, waiting to be reinstated. Solves the question of why we keep standing in our bedroom with a used Kleenex, saying, “Didn’t we once have a wastebasket in the bedroom?”
* Two styrofoam coolers, one with lid.
and, last but not least, a complete badminton set that does not even belong to us.
I’ll take pictures when I’m finished setting up–right now everything is off the porch except the lawnmower, because I washed everything. Our chairs will go back up there, as will a few other things. And then I will sit in the chair, drink a mint julep, and fan myself.