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Because I Can

Joined: 5/28/2009
Posts: 332
Home ownership is not necessarily new to me. My wife and I have owned 2 homes in the past 9 years, and have loved it! The stories of satisfaction, memories and such could fill a small book. Like most things, it seems, sometimes we get caught up in our daily grind and responsibilities and we tend to let the gratification take a back seat and, at least in my eyes, makes this short story all the more meaningful.

Fall has come and gone here as it usually does each year and has made way to the chill of the encroaching long and dark winter months. Now, before the snow flies and the ice encases the ground until May, we scatter to get the grounds and the house winterized and buttoned up. One thing that I do each year if nature allows me the chance within her tight and frigid time table, is to clear all of the leaves off of the ground, lawns, decks and drive, simply because it just makes spring clean-up a whole lot less of a chore. It also allows for easier and early fertilization of the lawns during the soggy, icey, post apocalyptic thaw period, otherwise known as ‘break up‘.

When our son lived at home, one of his chores was to man handle the fallen leaves. Typically, by choice, he’d use the old school method; a rake and can. He was never real happy about raking, and I can’t blame him, however, nobody ever told him he had to rake! Afterall, we always encouraged him to be creative and resourceful as a rule of life. After he moved out on his own, he came back over to the house one day that fall to find me with the backpack blower mounted on my back, blowing leaves off all of the lawns. Hmmm…. Now, he would use the blower to clear off the decks when he lived here and this was all his chore….but that was as far as it went before he would grab the rake to continue the fall ritual….manually! So, imagine the utter shock when he pulled up that day seeing that I had been hauling leaves, thinking in his mind that ‘ol dad is gonna finally see what I have had to endure every year in the form of sweat labor’ Instead, as he jumped out of his rig, he found dad working with his mind, not his body! Good lesson in ingenuity for the boy!

So, the other day I was out blowing leaves off into the forest that surrounds the house where it will compact with winter snow, break down and compost itself to give the surrounding vegetation nutrition. I got carried away and soon found myself strolling down the drive, blower on back, continuing to blow the leaves into the forest either side of the drive. Typically I don’t ever really go this far. I mean, it is not like it’s a paved driveway in the middle of a suburban neighborhood, but rather a narrow very long dirt drive that leads out to a rural dirt road. It just usually is not that important to me. My son, being years wiser than I….hee hee…would have thought I was just nuts doing this had he seen it happening. I could here him in my mind as plain as day saying, “why are you even bothering. It’s just a dirt road”! All of the time more than likely thinking to himself, ‘you crazy old fool’!

So there I was, mindlessly blowing off the dirt drive that in just a couple of weeks will be full of snow with my plow pulling leaves up with the snow being pushed out to the end of the drive…anyway. For a moment, I found myself in my head, asking myself in unison with my sons invisible comments, “why are you doing this?!” Very simply and in an answer filled with that fallen gratitude I mentioned earlier in this story, I answered his invisible voice and that of my own in my head…”because I can!” “It’s my drive and I ‘can’ do it, that’s why!” Re-affirmation to the simple fact that this is the beauty of ‘my home’, and that I can do anything I want, even if it means I may possibly seem like a ‘crazy old fool’! And the ultimate satisfaction to it all is that it really doesn’t matter….because I can.

It is silly comical little things like this, even if it was all in my head, that make a person sometimes feel that overwhelming sense of pride, accomplishment and satisfaction. Life is a series of choices and decisions, and one of the best ones my wife and I ever made was to buy our own home. Moments like this affirm it, and being able to sit back at the end of the day to enjoy what you have accomplished, makes it all worth doing.

For an honest no bars held look into reality in my world, stop in to my personal log of life,
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Comment by mcoly618

Joined: 5/2/2009
Posts: 472
I just wanted to let you know that we featured your essay on the Stage of Life Facebook page today. If you would like to check it, out go to

Feel free to share the news with your friends and family. You're famous! :)
Posted: Thursday, October 20, 2011 2:17:30 PM
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Comment by Guest

Joined: 10/30/2008
Posts: 2,760
I'm imprsseed! You've managed the almost impossible.
Posted: Saturday, December 31, 2011 9:36:12 AM
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Homeowners blog on StageofLife.comAbout Us is a blogging community for homeowners.  It allows people who own their home to share stories about the adventure of home ownership in an online life journal via their free Stage of Life account.  Read the blogs and stories about home ownership, or check out the writing contest for homeowners, quotes about owning a home, home etiquette, videos about owning a home, discounts for homeowners, and other resources for having a baby on  Register to start your free profile, share an essay about your home, and pass along your wisdom to help us change the world, one story at a time.  If you are a college professor, teacher or educator - review our literacy, blogging and writing resources

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