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small wonders

October 20, 2010

On Sunday Jack spent four hours in town with Don, happy in a home improvement store and then in the grocery. Don brought home dinner, gutters, paint and a new chainsaw, and Jack had his first chocolate milk. “It was a really good trip,” said Don. “It was a really good milk,” said Jack.

(On the way home, Jack asked for the milk repeatedly. Don thought he’d drunk it all, but when they stopped the car in the driveway, he found it had tipped over in the back floorboard, spilled perfectly into a bowl recently emptied of grapes or Goldfish, and stayed there – no sploshing! – even up our steep, bumpy driveway. The day before, that car had been detailed for the first time in this millenium. I don’t know whether to credit God or gravity – which sometimes feel like one and the same.)

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This fall is the first time he’s paid attention to pumpkins or Halloween, which “sometimes is scary,” he says. For two weeks he’s said he’ll be a giraffe. I kept asking, how about a cowboy (or anything else that mostly involves an easy-to-find hat)? And he would say, “Nope. I’m going to be a giraffe for Halloweeeen. With a really cool neck!” With 13 days to go, I found – who knew? – a 2T giraffe costume at Old Navy, $9.99.

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Two weeks ago, Don spent a day spreading rye grass seed and wheat straw around all sides of the house, where everything that was dry red clay and rock is now a fuzzy green.

It’s an annual grass we’re using to add life to the soil – we’ll plant something lasting in the spring. But this fall, as the trees get bare and brown, we’ll get to see our yard get a little greener. Don, who was sure the seeds would never germinate, is thrilled. Jack, who loved helping sow them, is marveling at every blade (“Look! Annnnother one! Wow!”).

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Last week I survived three days of college-related reunion events with no horror stories. We made friends and conversation, and even my last-minute outfits – thank you, Target – did not backfire. At the Chancellor’s house, we left before we were kicked out. At another dinner, we were seated at a table with the Dean and his wife, who as it turns out graduated from high school with my mother. At every gathering, there was lots to drink and talk about. It was a multi-class, generation reunion, which may explain it. No crazy shuttle-van stories, but several new Facebook friends. (Don still says we aren’t showing at his upcoming high school reunion.)

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I spent the first two days of this week on the road again, and planned to roll in just before midnight last night. But we finished early, and I came home at 9:30, to find Jack waiting up for me and Don making mulled wine. Now I’ll spend the next two days with Jack, off the road and out of the office – which feels like no small wonder.



11 Comments leave one →
  1. October 20, 2010 9:46 pm

    Sounds super. I am glad you found a giraffe costume. That is fabulous! Woop woop. You made me want some chocolate milk. Weird.

  2. October 20, 2010 11:10 pm

    It didn’t spill?!! That is amazing. My parents once had to sell a car because too much milk spilled in it. It was revolting.

  3. October 20, 2010 11:43 pm

    I love giraffes – I think that will be a wonderful Halloween costume. I think all the experiences of helping you make your house a home are wonderful for Jack, planting grass seed and seeing it grow. Enjoy your couple of days with Jack.

  4. October 21, 2010 12:07 am

    I bet he will be the cutest giraffe! 🙂
    (both kids are saying sometimes they’re a “little scared” of the halloween decorations too, but sometimes they’re “kind of silly”… kids!)

  5. October 21, 2010 12:16 am

    It sounds like this is the week to buy a lottery ticket, lady. So glad things are going your way. (I’m most impressed by the spilled milk dropping into the abandoned snack cup. What are the odds? Our car still bears the faint odor of some spilled milk a year later. Shudder.)

  6. October 21, 2010 4:59 am

    So nice things are falling into place. Love when an outfit works. It is the best feeling.

  7. sister permalink
    October 21, 2010 4:50 pm

    Yay for grass! I can’t wait to see Halloween pictures.

  8. October 21, 2010 7:20 pm

    We bought Little Miss a giraffe costume too! She got to pet one, so we thought it would be cute, except she’s more obsessed with another character so we’ll be returning ours. $9.99 is a steal though!

  9. October 22, 2010 3:13 am

    Hey a good giraffe costume is worth a lot.

  10. October 22, 2010 8:26 pm

    Any man who brings home dinner and a chainsaw is a keeper, for sure! And Halloween sometimes is scary, isn’t it? Can’t wait to see pictures of your little Jack Giraffe. =>

  11. October 23, 2010 6:03 pm

    You have been busy, lady. A last minute giraffe from Gap and an awesome outfit from Target?? Awesome.

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