Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Paging Mr. Newton

When you become the Mama, you start to see danger lurking around every corner. I don't know if it's some gene that is only activated when that little body is placed in your arms or what, but I know that I never thought about these things before. For instance, growing up in a rural community in the mountains, I'm sure that I bore witness to tons of fallen trees and broken branches without ever giving them a passing thought. Now, when I see a fallen tree, I say a quick prayer of thanks for it having fallen without hurting anyone. But at the same time, I look around at all the surrounding trees mentally judging their distance from the house and key play areas trying to determine their potential risk factor. It's a bit of a sickness, I realize this.

Anyway, sometime in late July, we had a pretty bad storm blow through the hood. It did this to the neighbor's tree:
Closer view:

I have no idea the physics involved with how this massive branch is able to remain hanging on up there, but since it's been over a month, I guess it's pretty secure--relatively speaking, right? Despite knowing this, I get sick to my stomach when I see kids playing in their yard because I keep picturing that trunk falling down. This tree is right on the fence line, so I refuse to let my kids play in that part of our yard. Andy, of course, is growing weary of me reminding him of this, but I can't help myself. It keeps me up at night sometimes just thinking about it. It's probably some kind of doomy, gloomy OCD or something. But at least I recognize my crazy, right?

Now just imagine how I felt when arriving at the lake to find this:

That sucker fell right down by where we make our smores.  The thing is, Gma doesn't even remember any major storms with high wind warnings. So maybe it was a random lightening strike? Who knows. Once again, a quick word of thanks that it fell when no one was outside at the time trying to eat a graham cracker covered in chocolate and marshmallow. And this was one massive tree.

Its carcass stretched almost down to the water's edge. Had it not been so dry, it might have even reached the water. See this is the lake now:

See where Chase is standing. Keep that in mind as you look at this picture from July 4th.

Clearly, we are experiencing a drought. And trees are more likely to snap when they're dry. So you can imagine how my little brain was twisting with worry. There's only one solution when I find myself fraught with anxiety: Go shopping.

So, my Mama and I hit up the Oakland Goodwill. I got lots of great treasures for the lake that I forgot to photograph, so I'll share with you two of the things that I brought home.

A couple of old, glass medicine bottles. I plan to put all of the flowers my children pick for me in them. I may be counting my chickens before they hatch though, as it's been quite some time since one of them brought me a freshly pruned stem. No matter, I know where to buy my own flowers.

The other treasure I purchased I had planned to give to Drew. You see, ever since he moved into his big fancy office, he's whined about wanting to have a Don Draper Couch. Anyone who's watched Mad Men will probably understand why I might have objections to that.  So I thought I would substitute five Don Draper Glasses instead. You know for all of that bourbon Drew drinks at work. Or iced tea. Either or.
I was pretty proud of myself for finding such a great compromise. But Drew didn't seem quite as excited about them as I thought he should be. Guess he's still pining over that couch. Too bad.

No worries though, I'll just use them to drink my diet coke on the rocks while I pace the yard trying to guess in which direction that big oak will fall. It's times like this that I really wish I would have paid more attention in those physics classes.

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