I just received my credit card statement with another year's payment for Typepad. I tried to remember when I last posted something to my blog and realized that it has been way too long. In trying to reconcile what at first felt like utter laziness, I remembered that I have been putting pen to paper almost everyday...privately, quietly, peacefully...until this morning when I wanted to have coffee with my morning journal and discovered that one of my very helpful furry friends had decided to "mark" it as their own.
So timing is everything I suppose.
Yesterday we had two dead oak trees taken down. Good Fellers Tree Service came to our aid...as they have several times in the past. They had to contract with Americrane to assist. At 7 a m the crew arrived to set the trees. At 8 the crane arrived and the anxiety reached full tilt.
There is something surreal about watching a fifty foot oak being lifted over your house. It had apparently been the victim of "Sudden Oak Death" and within months every leaf had turned brown and the branches dry and brittle started to fall piece by piece. The second tree, equal in size but heavier and more cumbersome because it was still clinging to life, cleared the peak of the roof and was placed gently onto the street.
I was not allowed to be in the house, or in the yard, or in the car in the street in front of the house. I was to stay as far from harms way as possible but not one step further. It was suggested that I leave... shop or something, but that was NOT going to happen.
I want to make it abundantly clear that my first concern was for the safety of the people working on the trees, but my heart, my memories, my toothbrush and my cats were in the house and I was more than a little anxious that one of the oak trees might also be IN THE HOUSE before the work was complete.
By noon, it was all done. Except for the wonderful stumps, soon to become fairy houses, you could not tell that they had been there. Hints of sawdust found their way into the liriope lining the driveway, but no one was hurt, no property was damaged, and we can breathe easier knowing that our dear old oaks won't be coming through the roof.
This morning I was thinking that my life seems to have revolved over the last month around trees, bees and fleas. The squirrels have left us with a bumper crop of fleas in the back yard and our indoor kitties, out for their morning stroll are picking up every last stray. The Frontline that our kitties get every month, is apparently no match for the sheer numbers of fleas dancing in our back yard. Nematodes, Diatomaceous Earth, Vet's Best Peppermint and Eugenol Spray, raking, mowing, blowing and burning, ( to the consternation of the Spotsylvania Volunteer Fire Department ) have offered no relief. Flea combing the guys morning and night has turned me into the cat's least favorite human and although I have not seen one in the house or on me... I know it is just a matter of time, if I relax even for a moment.
I just ordered more Yard Spray from Drs. Foster and Smith and this time I am going for the big guns, Permethrin, and although I will have to spray after dark to protect the bees... my hope is that in a day or two, I can once again concentrate on the third in my trifecta...Bees. Also just discovered that by ordering from Drs Foster and Smith instead of Amazon...what was I thinking... I paid twice as much. Oh well.
So... after all of that whining, the truth is that despite my wet journal, the dead oaks, the swarming bees and the flea bitten cats... I am incredibly grateful that my worries are so small.
I lost an old friend last week. He was younger than I am, had family, children, grandchildren and I'm certain, plans and dreams of the many years to come. We are not guaranteed one breath, one hour, one day... so every one is a gift, and I will think of him and remember my blessings as I dive into my ordinary day with my ordinary cats and their ordinary fleas, and somehow, thinking of my friend, makes it all feel lighter, easier, less burdensome.
It's easy to get lost in the inconveniences. Think of what we would rather be doing, or not doing, or not worrying or fretting about...but that's life. It's the man in the parking lot asking for gas money, the clean smell of the laundramat on bedspread day, the extra kind lady working the weekday window at Chick Fil A, the man at the Post Office who always has a smile and a wink, the videos of our families' little boys and girls as they grow and stretch into each new adventure, the memories of summer afternoons on the porch with iced tea and Shannon and the whispers of sadness that are carried on a passing breeze.
We grow into life and if we allow it, life grows into us.