As we prepare for the annual Vanech Family Leaf Removal Operation, I automatically reach for this photo:
It was taken the first autumn after we moved in — back when all those chores were exciting because they were new and OURS. (It was also back when Catherine would happily grab a rake or shovel and head into the yard to help, no threats of bodily harm required.)
I remember the day vividly — it was sunny, the temperature crisp, the leaves falling in a never-ending cascade. We spent the day raking them into a huge pile, all the better for jumping, naturally. We raked and jumped again and again.
As you can tell by the expression on her face, our efforts were greatly appreciated.
Yesterday, Basil went out with the lawn vac and handled the first few stragglers of the season himself while Catherine was at school and I toiled away at the computer keyboard.
It wasn’t the same.