So I didn't spend Earth Day planting a tree. It's been an interesting combination of dark, gloomy clouds (with rain) and patches of sunshine, so I decided to "celebrate" during one of the periods of sun by fixing the geyser our sprinkler system created, and dig up a few dandelions with my fancy new weeder.
Awesome tool, you can get right under the root and the curved part gives you great leverage to pull it up, and very little dirt comes too. Our next-door-neighbor introduced me to this tool just a few days ago. Kmart didn't have them, but we found one at Sears.
I led my son into the backyard laden with my new tool and some Mighty Putty to fix the sprinkler hole. My son decided to explore the deck a little and I went down to the big hole the geyser had blown in our dirt. I was reaching into the hole, trying to get the sprinkler pipe clean, when I looked back and saw that my son was starting to come down the steps off the deck. Now, there's only a railing on one side of the steps--something we've recognized as a hazard but not done anything about. It's not a big staircase--only seven steps--and he's handled it fine before, but today he was coming down close to the unrailed side. I called out to be careful, but even as I was leaping to my feet he slipped off the edge of the stairs. He was going feet first and actually managed to land on his feet, but only for a brief moment. You see, right next to the stairs from the deck is a small fountain/pond. He had very little space to get his footing, so his momentum carried him in, backwards, with a splash.
It hasn't looked this nice in years. It loses so much water while running, and it's annoying to keep the plants out of it, that we don't often set it up to run. We've been talking about the fact that it's a hazard since before I ever got pregnant, and debating the merits of making some sort of cover for it--but that's one more thing that just hasn't gotten done.
I was already running to him as I saw this happen, using words I typically try not to utter in his presence. His face was above water, and he was crying. I hauled the soggy boy out of the pond and carried him straight to the bathtub. (Ironically, on our way out the door I'd been thinking of how much rain we'd gotten and how he would probably get soaked from the grass.) I stripped us both down, and it was bathtime. Two spur-of-the-moment baths in one week! There really was no option not to bathe him at that point--the fountain was not full because we'd filled and groomed it, it was full from a season's worth of snowmelt (plus a little rain) and the smell reminded me forcibly of the zoo.
I let him play with his bath crayons for a long time and even gave him a written apology on the side of the tub: "I love you. I'm sorry I didn't supervise properly. I'm sorry you fell." He giggled, smiled, and splashed. I can only hope he'll be this quick to forgive later in life.
After his bath, we went back outside. I was both relieved and chagrined that he showed no fear of the stairs after his fall. We'd lost the sun, but I still managed to get the pipe epoxied and most of the dandelions pulled before it started sprinkling on us. My son climbed in my lap and pointed at the sky when he heard thunder.
This Earth Day, I learned the importance of supervision in protecting my most important thing on Earth.