Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Afternoon Wood

Pulling up the hill, I stopped short of my house and parked my little car in front of the neighbors' perfectly kept home and yard. My ragged yard was especially tatty with the pile of branches and leaves growing taller and wider at the curb as Paul and Michael took down our teetering honey locust tree limb by limb. They'd gotten pretty far in only a few hours, down to only a few large bare, branches.

Michael scampered around the tree, cutting, and Paul kept his feet on the ground, holding hard on the ropes tied to the branches Michael had trimmed bit by bit, guiding the wood to the ground, away from our house, away from the maple tree, the ash tree, the ginkgo tree, away from the power lines.

Kayleigh and I glanced up at Michael as we walked up the driveway. He stood on a solid branch, surveying his next move, his next cut.

"You're crazy!" Paul hollered up to him. "You're not walking out on that."

"I'll have to straddle it," he shouted back.

Paul looked at me and smiled. I handed him two water bottles and 65 cents, his change. The water in my house is perfectly fine, as is my bathroom. They prefer to stay outside.

"Straddle it?" I peered up at Michael. "I've never had that much wood between my legs."

I smiled and headed inside.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Odds and ends

New siding and windows tomorrow. We've moved everything away from the windows so they are accessible. My, I like my rooms with less stuff. Not that I didn't already know that.

I am in the throes of a deadline. Two stories, due the same day. I've had ample opportunity to write. I try. I just really suck at focus. I've tried caffeine, but it hasn't helped. I've tried allowing myself to be distracted in order to get the distractions out of my system. That hasn't helped, either. I think I just need a lot of pressure. Too much pressure.

Kelsey contracted her back-to-school illness already. She is a living, almost-breathing snot factory. She jammed her index finger up her nose and stretched her left nostril to the point where silver dollars could surely have had spare room. I said, "Could you please use a tissue to do that?" She continued her sinus diving and said, "I can't find the boogers when I use a Kleenex. ... Oh, there's one."

So, the siding. When the guy tore the yellow aluminum off, underneath was dark green cedar. It's one of those old colors that seems to be coming back in style. The kids love it. I must say, I don't mind it. It's better than the yellow aluminum. But tomorrow I will have light yellow vinyl instead. And it will match my garage. Cool. I wanted a light color rather than a dark one, and I didn't want to re-side the garage, which was already light yellow. So, light yellow it was. They call it cream. I tell you, if anyone ever presented me with cream that color, I would have to mention being on a diet or something, because that is not a healthy color for cream.

The windows are triple pane, also vinyl, with a wood grain interior. I'm happy about those. They are better looking than white, much cheaper than wood, and will hopefully make the house a lot warmer. Kelsey's room is in the northeast corner, and it is about 10 degrees cooler than the rest of the house in winter. Poor kid. You can feel the breeze in there. Kayleigh would like that, actually. What Kayleigh is not liking at the moment is having to clear a path to her windows. She has been a pack rat since she could grasp objects. I try not to object too much anymore because it's pretty pointless. I'd have to turn on the bitch-wolf mama me in order for anything to change, and I really don't have the energy, nor do I think it's very important. She'll clean her crap up someday in the next few years. That'll do. In the meantime, she just closes the door.

So, back to my deadlines. Oh, I found a T-shirt that says, "Not now. I'm on deadline." Perfect.

What are your odds and ends these days?