Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Steam, Dirt, Leaves and Other Fall-Like Things

   Autumn is sort of sacred around these parts. These parts being my household... or perhaps just in my own mind. And in my heart. I have written about the magic feeling of Fall several times before, but I just can't help but revisit it. There are some things that seem to be an endless wellspring of inspiration and to me that is what this season is. However short and fleeting it can be here in the Midwest. I have been doing my best this year to indoctrinate Bastian into my Autumn loving ways. To step out of my normal lazy, indoor prone ways and say "Yes" to as many "Outside" requests as possible, despite the added work of finding socks and coats and a hat... which never all wind up in the same place from the day before.

   On one such day last week I did a better than normal job of documenting our adventure. In fact I took 197 photos before nap time that day... The leaves haven't done a lot of changing yet and a lot of green remains but there was the telltale nip in the air, so we bundled up and headed out. First to the backyard where toddler boy would be fenced in and Mommy could do some reading while he played... but he soon noticed that just on the other side of the gate to the front yard there was some oddly thick and smoky looking air flowing out of a tube-like thing off the side of the house... this was too fascinating to ignore and so we ventured out past the gate "Close a door" and learned a bit about "SEAM" (meaning steam, obviously). The wide eyes of a little boy playing in the mist and fog that seemed to appear like magic, despite my knowledge of its roots in the laundry room on the opposite of the exterior wall we stood beside, was enough to make me feel the wonder of "how does it work?" a bit myself. One of the saddest things about growing up is in losing that sense of amazement over the littlest of things. Things that don't seem so very little, when you are. Little yourself. Having kids of your own brings this back, at least temporarily, and of course vicariously by nature... but still, magic nonetheless.

   Eventually the steam ceased and our adventure moved onward and outward into the front yard, then to the driveway and finally to a patch of dirt where the grass has refused to grow all summer directly next to the fence to the backyard... as close as you could be to the backyard without being fenced in. Just enough rebellion to make it fun. New and different. But still home. Still ours. We collected the few fallen leaves and threw them into the air with wild abandon. We ran back and forth so fast that we toppled over upon stopping to change directions. And then we sifted through dirt. First with sticks then with fingers. We poured it down the front of our jeans to see how it would land or fall. Then we tried to stow some away in our pockets for more fun at a future time... but by then our noses were cold and red. Almost as icy as our fingers. And so went inside for orange Oreos and a bath. All of which were met with the same level of excitement as the dirt, leaves and steam. Oh to be a two year old boy.

   See for yourself:

From our house to yours we wish you much magic steam and other fall-like things!

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