But we've had so much rain. So much tracked-in mud. The dogs can't help but get it on their feet when they go outside. On warmer days I've hosed them off on the back patio, and on colder days I've put them on leashes as they've come inside and marched them directly to the bathtub. It was important to tend to the dogs before dealing with their muddy footprints, and some of that mud dried and drifted into the air before I could mop it up. Drifted onto walls and floors and tabletops and books and blinds, not missing any damn thing.
No box of Swiffers is up to this job. It must be picked up, wet-wiped, vacuumed, from ceilings to floors. I wonder for the thousandth time, should I dust first or vacuum first? And I can't tell that one way is better than the other, so I dust an area, then vacuum it, and I wipe and rewipe, wash and wash again, put silk plants in the shower and hang them out to dry. Levi and Gimpy keep trying to get me to play ball with them. I block them off behind the indoor gate, pop a Benadryl to combat the dizziness, then move around the room a few feet in a clockwise direction from where I left off, and do it all over again. I think perhaps I'll finish the entire house by March.
But . . .
Before I let the dogs out for the first time this morning, I looked out the window and saw robins. Lots and lots of robins. I made Levi and Gimpy stay inside for an extra minute so I could try to get some close-ups:
The huge flock was scattered over three adjacent yards. Once I let the dogs out, the ones that had been in my yard quickly relocated just beyond the back fence:
Happy to see the robins returning, I took a few moments to watch them, then raised my eyes to this morning's beautiful mackerel sky:
Spring is on its way. I can see it and feel it. The mud in the yard will dry up, the dogs will be able to run outside freely--and cleanly, and all the work that lies ahead of me over the next few days will be behind me.
I feel hopeful now. I can do this.