Azaleas began blooming weeks ago while I was in the habit of driving into Atlanta to see Mrs. McG during her time in the poky.

She called it that, by the way, for three reasons, the first having to do with all the needles she had to become acquainted with. The others were less literal: the sense of confinement, and the slow pace of things (including delays in getting transferred to the hospital in Atlanta where the surgery would be performed, and in the actual date of the surgery). Fortunately there were no significant delays in her getting sprung once the procedure was completed.

Anyway, next to bloom were the Bradford pear trees, many of which have since moved on to sprouting leaves.

Springtime means the resumption of certain regular outdoor chores, starting with — as established in recent years — replacing the battery in the lawn mower. However, a recent battery hiccup in my car finally inspired me to buy a new battery charger that I hope will prove reliable, and while I didn’t need to use it that day, thanks to Autozone, I hope it will revive the mower battery.

We’ve had this mower for several years and previous battery hiccups were addressed using jumper cables attached to the battery on whatever motor vehicle I had handy. I have since learned that whatever alternator/generator/doohickey trouble the mower may have had that was causing the battery troubles, apparently jump-starting from a car battery makes hugely worse.

I’d been wanting to haul the mower to the usual repair place for an estimate on fixing the alternator/generator/doohickey, and see if it’s more cost-effective just to replace the mower, but it’s too late for that now until much later in the year. Mower repair shops tend to get backlogged as soon as the grass starts growing again, and once they had this mower for a month and a half.

Other things I’ll want to try to do include clearing out pine seedlings that have been sprouting up too close to the house in the last couple of years, and cutting down the non-pine seedlings that have been growing up out of a big hole in the back yard too big to ride the mower over. I can let trees grow out of holes in the field out front, but this backyard hole is both too close to the house and — I believe — right over the septic tank.

There are other, much bigger jobs that need doing but I need to bring in a service to make sure it’s done properly.

It’s nice to once again have the luxury of thinking about home chores…