Fire Ants and Inflamation


Last season, I ripped out an unsightly shrub from our front yard, a succulent with puffy green and orange leaves that leaked sticky milk every time I clipped a branch. Then I headed off to pick up Lauren from school. My eyes started stinging halfway there, but I shrugged and kept going.

By the time we were at the grocery store for a quick loaf of bread on the way home, my eyes were swollen, dripping with tears. My vision blurred. “Pick something healthy,” I mumbled to Lauren while I squinted at rows of wobbly plastic bread bags. My eyes were on fire.

Back in the car, I didn’t think I could see well enough to drive.

“Maybe we should take you to the ER,” Gary said later. My face looked like a cross between the Campbell Soup Kid and the Hunchback of Notre Dame.

I tossed the bread onto our plywood kitchen, the spot where our countertop would be if our remodel ever made it that far. Gary gave me Benedryl, and I went to bed, knocked out cold til the next day.

So when Gary came in from the back yard yesterday with clown hands, I knew he’d brushed up against something nasty. His hands were puffed up like last season's dress after an all-you-can-eat buffet.

But can you see the green grass in the background? If you get that paw out of the photo, our yard is really starting to look good.

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