It's a self-propelled mower, so I still have no idea how much harder it would be with a non-self-propelled mower. But my house is on more than a quarter-acre lot, so it was still a fair amount of work. Midway through the task, I figured out that wearing gloves is extremely helpful for reducing hand fatigue. I also took a five-minute break between the front yard and the back yard, which seemed to really help. And I'm extremely glad that I dug out as much lawn as I did over the past year to install garden beds. The lawn is still huge, but it's a little bit less huge than it started out being.
Immediately after I finished the mowing, I also edged both yards with the weedeater. I've used a weedeater before, but it's been a while, and I found that it was a lot easier than I remembered. The weedeating really required practically no effort at all.
Yesterday I achieved another major first by using my new crock-pot for the first time. I followed a recipe that came with the crock-pot, for barbecue pulled pork. Except I didn't actually bother with much pulling of the pork, and I decided not to make a sandwich out of it as the recipe suggested. Also, the warnings in the crock-pot directions to make sure to always include enough liquid caused me to question whether even the recipes that came with the crock-pot included enough liquid, so I added some apple juice just to be on the safe side.
And then, just to make myself feel like I'd prepared more of a fully developed meal, even though there was already so much food that it's going to take me all weekend to finish the leftovers, I also put together a side dish. A spontaneous side dish without any particular recipe: a red potato and a sweet potato, baked and mashed together with butter and the now-pork-flavored apple juice/barbecue sauce on it. I was pleased with the results. I was also pleased with the way the crock-pot made the entire house food-scented.
I also weeded the garden a bit yesterday, harvested some more pecans, and raked the back lawn in preparation for today's mowing. It's been nearly two months since my fingers were last their normal color; they get permanently stained dark brown or black by pecan juices, and I keep re-staining them every few days, so the stain isn't going to get a chance to wear off until the pecans stop falling.
The pecan curing and storage process doesn't seem to be going as well this year as last year, though. The pecans are supposed to cure for several weeks and then go into storage in the freezer, but some of them seem to rot before I get them into the freezer. I'm not sure why. Last year I didn't have this problem.
I also did one load of dishes and two loads of laundry today, and changed the bedsheets. All this when I also worked half a day of overtime today and another half a day of overtime yesterday.
Jessica is coming over tomorrow afternoon, and I'm hoping to get her help in figuring out where to hang my various pictures on the walls. If I get up early enough, I may also go hiking in the morning before she arrives, probably at Daugherty Hill State Wildlife Area again, just taking a different path than last time. I'm not sure whether I'll end up actually having time for that, but if I do, it would be nice to get a chance to use my new hiking backback with hydration reservoir for the first time.
Stardust seems to be really enjoying being the only cat of the household now. Wherever I go, she's constantly within a few inches of me and usually purring very loudly. Right now I'm on the couch, so she's sitting behind my head. She's made it very clear that she does not believe in sitting on the actual seat of the couch, ever. She always sits behind my head. Then if I don't pay enough attention to her, she squeaks plaintively directly into my ear until I pet her. Then she starts purring again.