Autumn Leaves

Dear Marshall,

It is March of 2011 now. I wrote the following post during the fall, which is why I’m setting the publication date to this day (chosen randomly) in October.

I looked out the window at the tree limbs dancing in the sky today and saw that some of the leaves have started to turn. Fall is on its way.

We went out in the yard. I showed you different colored leaves: red, yellow, brown, and green. I made such a big deal over hunting for yellow ones that you started to laugh at me. I made a little pile in front of you. I wish I could freeze that moment—you standing there with all the yellow birch leaves and laughing.

The grass was long and lush and damp. How happy you were picking up wet acorns and muddy pine cones.

I remember the first time I saw this house, looking up at the swing set on the hill and thinking what a great place this would be to raise a child. That was before we had decided for sure to have children, and before we had decided for sure to buy a house. So strongly did that feeling persist that we felt sad about not buying this house, but it was just too expensive. The asking price dropped again, though. We snatched up the house and now the image is reality. There is a child to play in the yard.

Other people might say, “There’s no neighborhood. Children should be raised in a neighborhood.” But who needs a neighborhood when you have frogs and blackberries and dragonflies and salamanders, and lots and lots of leaves. I hope you will learn to love the outdoors as much as I do.



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