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Ah, springtime. When the dreaded honey-do list starts growing. The good news is, you don’t have to don an apron and rubber dish gloves to be helpful. There are lots of “manly” things to help with! Most of these will get you out of the house and out of your wife’s hair- and hopefully score you some “points” in the process…

  1. Put on some shorts, get outside and into that shining sun… to clean up the dog poop. Sure, it’s a crappy job, but you can’t attend to the lawn (your pride and joy) until it’s done. While you’re out there, pick up any fallen branches. FYI: everything else from here on out is way funner.
  2. Inspect sprinkler heads for damage & replace as necessary.
  3. Now you’re ready to aerate and fertilize the lawn. You should do this at the beginning of spring just before a good rain. You’ll need to make a trip to the local hardware store and wander around for an hour or so to check out all the cool stuff. You might as well pick up a 12-pack or case of “sustenance” on your way home. Yard work is hard work. And hard work makes you thirsty.
  4. If you really want to make your yard purrty, now would be a good time to place that order for mulch. Waiting until summer to spread mulch in 90 degree heat and humidity is just dumb. And you’re definitely not. Be sure to rake or blow out all the dead leaves before mulching.
  5. Wash out trash & recycling cans. These can get pretty rancid and no one, especially girls, likes stink.
  6. That barbeque grill of yours probably didn’t get much love over the winter. If you didn’t give it a thorough cleaning before its winter hibernation, do so now. She’ll appreciate that the barbeque tastes better.
  7. Now, on to your second “office”- aka the garage. This job can waste several hours. You’ll want to take everything out of it. Sweep it out (see honey, no spider webs!) and bust out your pressure washer (woo hoo!) to give your garage floor a good cleaning. You’ll then organize it to allow “better access to the kid’s bikes, lawn equipment, garden tools, etc.” And because you love the environment, you’ll properly dispose of old paint, used oil and old gas. <– Chicks dig that sort of stuff.
  8. Since you’ve already got the cars out of the garage, it’s a good time to do some light auto maintenance. This includes checking fluids under the hood and changing cabin air filters, the oil, wiper blades, and any light bulbs that have burned out. But first, you’ll need to take a trip to the local auto parts store. Perhaps you notice that your cars need a good waxing. This is much easier if you have an orbital waxer. If not, Mr. Miyagi’s wax on, right hand –  wax off, left hand is a good place to start. If it’s been awhile since you’ve Rain-X-ed the windshields, go ahead and apply this while you’re at it.
  9. If you have a shed, you’re in luck! You get to repeat all that sweeping and organizing you did in the garage.
  10. Remember how much fun that pressure washer was? Well, there’s plenty of other stuff to deep clean: the concrete driveway, deck, porch, patio furniture and siding. The list can go on and on (depending on how long you want to be outside in your shorts). If she asks, you’re “enhancing our home’s curb appeal.”
  11. Since you’re already wet, another good time waster is to take out the hose and spray down the window screens. To deep clean your screens, you should first remove them. Since you’ve got the screens off, you could elect to wash the exterior windows. Warm water with a couple drops of Dawn dishwashing soap, a sponge, a squeegee and a ladder is all it takes to make those windows sparkle.
  12. You’ll want to clean the air conditioning radiator before you run your AC for the first time. If questioned, let her know it will help the AC “run cooler, use less energy, and make her feel more comfortable.”
  13. At this point, you may need to go back to the hardware store (oh, snap). You forgot to buy spray foam/caulk for all those areas around your home’s exterior where air and “yucky bugs” may be entering the house. Explain that this will reduce the heating/cooling bill.
  14. Because you know she hates those “yucky bugs,” you’ll go ahead and spray insecticide.
  15. Though you’ll eventually have to venture back indoors due to spring showers, there’s still plenty of good time wasters solitary, manly jobs to attend to. Retreat to the basement. It probably needs a good sweeping. While you’re down there, change the air conditioner filter or clean it by soaking it in a vinegar-and-water solution for several hours. Depending on your ambition level after completing this list, you may decide that the concrete floor would be less dusty if it were stained. Back to the hardware store you go…
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