"Put this on the doorknob."
"You don't have door knobs," was Mr. 11's accurate if somewhat snarky response.
And so it went, for minimum wage plus a tip, last Wednesday.
They've been helping me for years; they know the drill.
Carrying the ladder and the tall box of large, unbreakable, out-door ornament balls, they required no supervision to get started. As I sorted and repacked and organized Halloween and Thanksgiving on the garage floor, my young assistants took to their task with all the importance it required. My neighbors slowed down to wave and smile as my trees grew more festive. Their work did not exist in a vacuum. As their satisfied smiles proved, it really was important work.
The inside was less prickly, at least as far as the flora was concerned.
11 and 13 are, by nature, testing the waters to see how far they can go, and Decorating Day was no exception. "Why should I put Santa on the roof?" wondered Mr. 11, allowing me to make a fool of myself by explaining how Santa came down the chimney and the chimney was on the roof and even though the orange house has no chimney.... and by this point Santa was happy and I was humming Fiddler on the Roof
and Mr. 11 went outside to put Santa up on a pedestal.
The reindeer usually guard the front door, nestled in between the container garden.
The boys found a much more active role for them to play in whatever narrative they were constructing.
Grazing reindeer..... it's new this year and I kinda like it.
From my front porch I see them feeding, as I look over my peace wreath out to the mountains.
I'm a very happy camper these days.
And, did I mention that I have antlers on my car?