PASS THE TORCH (old site -- visit new site at

Tuesday, May 09, 2006


My seven-year-old son constantly bugs me to let him ride the lawn mower, so this past weekend I asked if he’d like to help. I’m a safety nut, so I gave him the regular lecture, then we both donned protective ear muffs and he wriggled onto my lap behind the steering wheel. I pulled on the speed lever until we were set at the frantic pace of one mile-per-hour, then turned over the navigation to a broad-grinned boy.

During the half-hour or so that we puttered around the yard, he dodged trees and criss-crossed in a random fashion that was sure to miss patches of grass. But I just let him go and didn’t worry about the quality of the lawn’s manicure. I advised him mostly for safety issues, pointed him away from the ditch and talked him through my use of the brake and gears.

When we’d finished, he said that was the best thing he did all weekend, and has since asked every day if we can mow again. But even in May, our grass doesn’t grow quite that fast.

Something I offered just for fun, turned in to a confidence-builder and series of teachable moments. I now have a regular date with the lawn-boy.

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  • :) Beautiful!

    By Blogger September, At 10:46 AM  

  • Ha. Unfortunately my 8-year-old seems to have a nose for anything that can be mildly associated with "work" and avoids it. He has gotten very good at the art of staying unseen at just the right time.

    By Blogger Matt D., At 6:01 PM  

  • Thank you both for posting your comments about my Lawn-boy. Matt - I bet your 8-year-old would change his ways if he could ride a John Deere;)

    By Blogger Pass The Torch, At 10:31 PM  

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