Wednesday, April 18

Lawn Mowing Monster

Until this spring I think I have mowed for a grand total of 30 minutes in my entire life.

Growing up with so many brothers meant that mowing the lawn was never one of my chores. And until I bought my house I didn't have a lawn to worry about. Then I didn't own a lawn mower so my dad would borrow one and since he was coming out to bring the lawn mower by he would just mow it for me too. After all my yard isn't very big and he claims it doesn't take long.

Then he bought me a brand new lawn mower for Christmas. He showed me how to use it and then it sat in my garage for the rest of the winter. Since my brother moved in soon after that I didn't have to worry about mowing.

To be honest mowing is kind of scary! What if I'm home alone and something happens? How do I figure out what's wrong if the mower breaks? Plus to be honest there are dozens of chores that top mowing on my priority list. As I mentioned in my previous post, "How the Heck Do I Clean Hardwood Floors?", it has been a while since I thoroughly cleaned my floors. Between the dog and me I have trouble keeping the rugs vacuumed! Since I rarely wander through my yard, generally the tall grass just means that Ollie has a jungle to explore.

Now Spencer is gone and I failed miserably at convincing my other brothers to come mow for me. As a result I dragged the mower out a couple of weeks ago. My dad kept telling me how easy mowing is so I got him to tell me again how to start my mower and got started.

In the picture to the left you can see how far I got before my mower quit. So much for it being easy! I called dad and he said I probably had a clog since I had let my grass get so tall.

Now I would just like to point out really quickly that with all the rain we've had my grass went from nothing to almost knee-high in no time, but that's not really the point.

So I turned my mower over and started cleaning the grass out. I decided this job is NOT my favorite. The grass stained my fingers and there were all sorts of bugs that were in the grass clippings. But I got as much out of the mower as I could.

Then I turned it upright again and started the mower again. I got this far when it quit again. Talk about frustrating!

I started messing with everything trying to figure out what was wrong. When I pulled the air filter out this brown greasy fluid gushed out. Lovely right? Now I have grass stained fingers and oil all over my hands. At that point my dad told me not to try to start the mower again until he could fix it. So my mowing attempt for the day was over.

I recently saw an article talking about lawn mower maintenance. I'd never even considered general maintenance on my lawn mower. I've heard that battery or electric mowers don't require as much work, but there are many other things I'd rather spend money on than a new mower. So my dad showed me how to check the oil (which was what had spilled out, apparently I flooded the engine, but the oil really needed to be changed anyway). He also told me that I should buy premium gas for the mower rather than the cheaper stuff you put in the car.

After Dad fixed the mower I managed to finish my lawn, with the exception of areas the mower won't fit. For my birthday I've asked for a weed whacker so I can get those areas too.

I actually didn't mind mowing once I got going. The irritating parts are when the mower quits and that two days after mowing all the dandelions look like the mower never came through.

What is your least favorite spring/summer chore? Ever had any mowing disasters?

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