Tree Gazing

My favorite tree in the fall is the sweetgum. 
It's in the side yard, right outside the window.
When I'm in my workroom, it beckons to me.
 When my boys were little, we used to go out and just lay in the grass 
and marvel at its wide and thick strong arms. It's a huge, ginormous tree, stories high. 
That being one of the beauties of home education! I must confess that as a former teacher  in
an inner city school system, I was never afraid to send my sons into the public schools.
While many portray the public schools as bastions of evil, I know that there are many, many 
caring people there who shepherd their students along in the most positive ways. 
No, I didn't begin home educating because of fear. 
I just wanted more tree time! 
Shared moments of laughter, tree gazing, grass rolling - as many moments as we wanted. 
 It makes a person a little dizzy to think about climbing all the 
way up and getting a view from the tippy top. 
The squirrels and birds peered down at us from their heights - worlds in reversal. 
Now that I'm on my own this fall, I haven't been out there to tree gaze.
It seems like something that begs for a companion, doesn't it?

I brought in all of the plants I'd like to save from the frost to begin overwintering in the greenhouse.
Their stems must be pruned down pretty severely - it's a little bit sad to break back all
of the splendor of summer, but necessary for the plant to survive, if it will survive
I thought it was particularly sad to see the long vines of this gorgeous mandevilla in the weed heap.
All in hopes of enjoying it again next spring! 

Gardening produces so much HOPE, don't you agree?

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