So I was edging the veggie patch this week with some help from my almost-twelve-year-old daughter. I was cutting, she was pulling away the hunks of sod, and the hunks were raining soil down around our feet, as hunks of sod will sometimes do. And these words came out of my flip-flop sporting offspring:
“Oh, man, there go my summer feet.”
Three things went through my mind in quick succession:
1. This girl has finally turned girly if she’s worrying about her pedicure
2. That’s what you get, child, for your lousy choice of footwear for the occasion
3. My definition of summer feet and yours are very, very, different.
Indeed, I looked down at her fancy polished nails, and even flecked with bits of crumbly black they did look rather lovely and fun. I glanced to my own feet, booted for the occasion, and imagined what I would find there at the end of the day. I don’t need to describe it, do I?
As the summer goes on, I know the dirt will keep sneaking in under the nails, the calouses will thicken, and I will so not be ready for my close up without some serious intervention. And my hands? Ditto. Dried up, beat up.
There are lots of good products out there for cleaning and moisturizing geared specifically to gardeners, but I’ll share my favourite homemade trick with you, guaranteed to trade in “gardener’s” summer feet for “fancy” summer feet: mix a little olive oil with a couple of tablespoons of regular white sugar until you have a nice paste. Massage your feet and/or hands for a few minutes with the mixture. It will moisturize and exfoliate at the same time. (You can add a little essential oil if you like; lavender is nice for relaxation, peppermint for refreshing tired toes.) Rinse with warm water. Enjoy.
Side note: to all the ladies out there who have borne children, adopted children, loved, taught, scolded, or spoiled children, or intend to do so someday: Happy Mother’s Day! I’ve already gotten one of my gifts: a new compost rake (aka dandelion or thatching rake) I’ve been wanting. But my favourite Mother’s Day gift is when we all go for a little hike behind our town and hunt for wildflowers. That’s what I’ll be doing Sunday afternoon. Do I have it good? Oh yes I do.