Saturday, November 04, 2006

Beautiful Day

It was sunny today.

We had a front and back yard full of leaves, so I had dutifully warned Chris and Max that their lives were MINE for the morning and that we would be raking.

In different parts of the nation, leaves are dealt with in different ways. I remember bagging leaves as a kid. Here we rake them all to the edge of the property against the road and then a BIG TRUCK comes around once a week with an ENORMOUS leaf sucker and they suck the leaves through a mulcher and into the truck and the truck goes and dumps the stuff at the compost center.

Our street is comprised mostly of retirees who have nothing better to do than mow their lawns in the summer and rake their leaves in the fall, so we constantly look like slackers since I just can't keep up with that. But we're doing better than last year. Last year we basically waited until every single leaf had fallen off the trees and then had one long, miserable leaf-raking session. I think it took like five hours or something. I decided this year to skip that kind of misery and go for shorter, more frequent sessions. But not every week. No. So this was our second session.

I didn't take a lot of pictures, even though it was rather photogenic since the tree with the yellow leaves had done the most dropping and the colors were great this year. But mostly I was, you know, raking. Here is the yellow tree. It's clearly not done dropping leaves.

When Chris got up on the roof though to blow off the leaves, I had to take a picture. He is not smiling because he has a true fear of heights and he HATES being on the roof.

But I was smiling, because the gutters are free of leaves!!! Yay!!!

And Ben was smiling, because it was COOL.

Anyway, we finished up the leaves around 1pm, so I skeddadled inside and made everyone a quick lunch (chicken patty sandwiches with cheese) and then Max and I headed to Target since he's grown again.

You know, he's been such an inexpensive kid to clothe for the last few years in comparison to the twins because his growth spurts were fairly reasonably spaced and because we had this friend in California who had a closet ful of clothes he was outgrowing and hadn't had a chance to hardly wear, much less wear out, and he was, for a little while, just a little bigger than Max. But he is also a year and a half older and so then he turned ten or eleven or something and then next thing we knew he could practically have handed his clothing down to Chris.

So Max has literally been living in Chase's clothing for the last three years or so. This summer was the first time I had to buy him anything other than shoes and swim trunks in a long time. Well, Max broke the news to me this morning that he couldn't get into any of his jeans anymore and he had like three long-sleeve shirts that still fit.

Suddenly, I understood the wisdom of the Clothing sinking fund. This isn't one we've normally had as usually I have enough warning that a kid is growing out of clothes and I can send subtlely worded hints to the grandparents (Like, "Dear Mom and Dad, the twins are cold and have no pajamas. Can you buy them pjs? Love, Alaska") Last year this worked so well that they don't even NEED any pjs this year because last year's still fit and there are plenty of them (although since I'm being Stingy McThemostatNazi this year, I should probably put out a request for more size 6/7 thermal underwear). But Max--Max is growing this year and everything else he does (like go to school or play football) is just a side business. I was in denial, so there was no money set aside for his clothes.

Well, we came up with a solution (that did not involve selling either of his brothers on eBay) and so we went to Target where you can still get decent blue jeans for $8.99. I got a lot of knitting done while my pre-teen tried on clothing. Holy Canoli. Anyway, we left with four new shirts, three new pairs of jeans, some new underwear, one new pair of snowpants (ski season starts in two months), one new winter hat (yah, I could knit him one, but when?), and a new pair of boots, mens size 7.

When we got home, I took a nap. Then it was juevos rancheros for dinner, who knows WHAT happened to the hours between 7 and 9, I spent the last 45 minutes helping Max reorganize his closet and then putting all the kids to bed, and now this post and . . . it's time for me to get some paying work done (which is why I took that nap).

Good day :)


Becca said...

Your trees are so beautiful. My pathetic little 6 foot high trees in our new subdivision hardly produce enough leaves to make it worthwhile. I envy you your raking!!

Writing and Living said...

I was just telling my best friend my strategy for leaves: If you ignore them for long enough, they'll eventually blow away.

How's that for a slacker?

We have huge oak and hickory trees in our yard, so we really do have to deal with them. I wish our town had a giant leaf sucker. Around here everyone burns them. I actually don't mind the smell (from a distance), but it's just a pain.