Friday, November 8, 2013

About a billion more ...

Marlene Terry
I try and keep "In a Nutshell" a few days ahead. So by the time you read this, I'm sure the grounds around my house will be clear and completely cleaned up for winter.
... Well maybe not 100 percent cleaned up. Because we love sitting out and enjoying the fall. So it always takes us awhile, to cover up and store away the lounges and chairs from the deck and patio.

A few days ago we hosted a pumpkin carving party. But before we began, we enlisted the help of our kids and grandkids. And with rakes, blowers and a whole lot of enthusiasm, we attacked the thousands of leaves piled up under our large maple trees in the backyard.
... The best part was when we were done, that feeling that this would be for sure, the last of our 10-12 bag days.

... You know. Those large paper bags that you purchase at a store for fall cleanup. You get them in packages — usually five in each one. And believe me when I say those bags can hold more leaves and lawn refuge than you ever dreamed possible!
... It's hard to believe that dried leaves, no matter how many, would weigh anything. But when we finished jamming them full that day, some were so heavy they had to be dragged to their place, lined up by our tool shed!

We did allow a little time for our grandkids sake (and a few of our kids as well) to jump in the piles and throw leaves everywhere. But after that we joined together to jam those bags full. ... A dozen or so added to the five we already had filled to the brim.

"Brother," I exclaimed, " wiping the perspiration from my brow. "When the truck comes around to pick up the leaf sacks this year, those men are going to be surprised!
"I think we should place them side by side down the street, a block long or so, for a better effect."

My triumphal speech was good but not nearly as profound as what one of my daughters prophesied.

"Mom," she said laughing. "That's just the beginning!"
"I've never understood why you have to get out and rake leaves day after day anyway. You should wait. Tomorrow there's going to be a billion more!"
... And for emphasis, she gestured upward into the tree above with her rake!

... Both comments were soon forgotten as we proceeded inside for a chili dinner and some really fun pumpkin carving. And all of us worn out, but happy, retired to our beds to rest and revel in what we'd accomplished.

The shocker came the next morning.
While we slept, gentle breezes turned for awhile at least, into brisk winds. ... The sight was unbelievable!

I awoke, opened my bedroom curtains and looked out into another gorgeous fall day.
But those bags, thankfully still upright and secure along the shed, weren't what caught my eye. ... It was all those leaves that had fallen during the night that covered the lawn, flower gardens, roof tops, etc., etc.

... She was right. ... There was about a billion more!

♦ Hope you'll let me share YOUR stories and photos here at my residence "In a Nutshell." Email me at