Sunday, November 4, 2007

Extreme Husband: Landscape Edition

I read a magazine survey, recently, that said 95% of women wish their man would do more around the house. Apparently, the stereotypical male relies on his wife for the majority of things.

My hubby, on the other hand, takes self sufficiency to the extreme. Being waited on and catered to makes him nervous and uncomfortable. His motto tends to be, "Why would I want anyone else to do for me what I can do myself?"

And truthfully, there is not a lot he can't do. Cooking? Smack your lips kind of good. Cleaning? Not a nook or cranny left untouched. Organizing? To the point of arranging the canned goods in alphabetical order.

Honestly, he is so thorough and efficient at any and everything that it sometimes just gets on my nerves.

Upon arriving home from the honeymoon, I was determined to do everything I felt a "good wife" would do. And I am domestically challenged, so it was a true labor of love. I made beds, I cooked, I did dishes, and so on and so forth.

But, each day I would notice more strange happenings. For example, one morning, I noticed that the bedspread seemed straighter and smoother than when I first had made it. The next day, it seemed like the leftovers were seasoned better than my original creation. I began to fear I was losing it, imagining things to be different than they really were.

Until I discovered the truth.

Everything changed on day 20 of our marriage when I caught him in the act. He was secretly reloading the dishes I had put in the dishwasher an hour before.

The confrontation went down.

"Chris, if I didn't know better, I would think you are going behind me and re-doing all the housework I'm doing. If you are going to come behind me and re-do things, darling, I would just assume to not even do them in the first place."

"Britt, that would be so great. I really would love for you to just let me do this stuff, baby, and sneaking around behind you just takes too much energy and makes me feel dishonest."

My feelings were actually hurt for about .05 seconds before the reality of it all sunk in.

And then it was as if the pearly gates had just opened up and the angels were singing me a private concert. What a beautifully glorious day that was, when I realized I had just married my father, the kind of man who gets up early to make sure your car is warm and gas tank is full. And scrubs toilets better than June Cleaver. Could it really be possible that I could be both born into and married to the last two men on earth that thrive on housework?

Thank you, Mom, for giving me the gene of good taste.

And so, the marital roles were established and agreed upon. He did everything, and I fully appreciated and adored him.

Now fast forward, 5 years later.

I am a stay at home mom, so obviously things have shifted a tad. He still helps tremendously, but I have tried to step it up in the inside our house department. Although he still handles all bills, loves to cook, is the sole vacuum user, and does his share of deep cleaning, I try to limit his role to only taking full responsibility for the outdoor endeavors of home ownership.

And that's probably a good thing since I'm not even sure what those endeavors would be.

But needless to say, Chris is not the stereotypical man when it comes to the domestic skills side. So, imagine my shock when I arrived home from a week at Resort De Grandparents to find this:

Where was my husband and who was this impostor that had greeted me and Park in the driveway?

As it turned out, there was no time for dishes and laundry because the landscaping had received an unexpected Extreme Home Makeover. And when hubby tackles a task, he means BUSINESS. Entire flowerbeds were overhauled, dug out so deeply that we now have the option to someday bury ourselves in our own front yard.

No, sir, there is nothing halfway about my Chris.

Apparently, he took my tree post very seriously, considering our backyard has now been transformed into a full-fledged forest. He planted a total of 12 twigs trees or at least green leafy things that seem to aspire to be trees someday.

But my biggest bewilderment at this point are the cone-like items that are occupying our yard. Upon examining them closely, I have discovered that I indeed have no clue as to what they are, but they bear a terrifying resemblance to this:

Except they are around the neck of the smallest saplings I have ever seen, which hubby meticulously transported from the yards of his sweet parents. Do you see the striking similarity?

Apparently, in a moment of pure gardening selflessness, Chris decided to forgo things such as eating, sleeping and clean underwear to ensure that the people who live in our house in 2107 will not suffer the same treeless existence that we are.

What that magazine survey did not reveal was that the five percent of woman who don't need their man to do more around the house, actually need him to do less in the yard.

Hopefully, project "Landscape Overhaul" may distract him from reloading the dishwasher behind my back, but I'm not holding my breath.


Kelly said...

1. I didn't know men like your Chris existed. Really. Truly. I've never heard of anything like that.

2. Are you sure he hasn't cloned himself? Maybe you should rent "Multiplicity."

Amy said...

You are so very, very, very lucky. Really. Lucky.
My husband is pretty good with helping out, but nothing like what you have described. We have a Dyson too and I do the vacuuming but when I need to use the attachments I have to call on the husband - he whips those attachments out and takes care of all the nooks and crannies because I can never figure them all out!

Shelly said...

My Dad was a lot like that...bless the Lord! Hehe :)

I was cracking up at your heavenly thankfulness on day 20 of your marriage :) Love it!

Anonymous said...

So you think you know me...

Love you,

Danette said...

I am jealous! I wouldn't trade mine for the world--but a backyard overhaul would be heavenly--at least some trees!

Christy said...

I love this post!

Clay is like that too...when we first got married we would fight because he wanted to do everything and I was in that same "I am a wife, hear me vaccuum" mode.

Now he cleans the kitchen at night and puts the kids to bed.

Yard work...I need to get him to read this post. LOL

Anonymous said...

i haven't laughed this hard in MONTHS!!! really, really funny stuff