Tuesday, March 12, 2013

The Lessons That Matter

When I was a little girl my dad would take me to work with him.
The highlight of the day would be when he let me sweep the floors to earn two quarters to buy a soda from the machine.

Many many years later, I can't pick up a push broom without hearing my dad's instructions on the best way to sweep.

(Short pushes rather than one long push ... the long push kicks up too much dust and leaves a trail of dirt behind.)

On Saturday I spent five hours working outside at the nursery, cleaning up the remains of winter.
I swept, I cleaned up trash, I used a leaf blower for the first time in my life and fell in love ... all with the 'help' of my nieces and nephew.

I couldn't help but smile as I heard myself tell Allie, "Don't push the broom with long pushes..."

After filling up a trailer with things for the garbage and the compost pile, we all piled on to the 6-wheeler and went for a ride around the nursery.

I let the three oldest kids take a turn driving.
Nick nearly drove us into a tree.
Allie nearly drove us into a ditch.
Kate nearly drove into me (I was standing to the side of the 6-wheeler while it idled and Kate pushed the gas button.)
And poor Ruthie just wanted to get off and walk because of the trauma of it all.

Allie spent the rest of the day telling anyone who would listen that she nearly drove us into the ditch.
She could not stop laughing about it.

Owning a family business makes you equal parts crazy and grateful - on Saturday I was just grateful.
It's hard to believe that we now have our own kids learning the ropes.

As I was leaving on Saturday afternoon I stopped in the store to say goodbye to my dad.
He's ridiculously busy and is rarely at the nursery, but Saturday he spent his free time helping out.

"See you tomorrow Dad," I said.

"Did you clean up your piles of dirt?" my dad asked.

"Of course I cleaned up the piles of dirt.  What?  Did you forget that you're the man who raised me?"

He smiled as he said, "Just checking."

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