Monday, March 25, 2013

This is the story of a tree..

Remember how when you were little and as you walked home from kindergarten (because the world was a different place then, and you could walk two blocks without fear of being kidnapped/offered drugs/shot at) and you picked flowers from people's yards to give to your mom?

No? Just me then... ahem... ok.

To be fair, they were mostly dandelions. I Looooove dandelions! Yes, yes, I know they are a noxious weed- but the flowers are so happy! (plus I hear they make good salad- but I don't eat weeds. Nor do I eat salad.)

And then when they get fluffy, you get to blow the seeds away (which, by the way, your parents think is super cute and you should do it in the backyard all the time- because they totally don't mind having their backyard turn into a dandelion field).

Well, my sisters and I have come a long way since dandelions.

Today, we were walking down the street and saw a tree and thought, "Hey, mom would like that!" so we put it in the back seat of my car and drove away.

This wasn't a sapling folks. This was... well... ok, I sense you're wanting back story. [pulls up a chair and adjusts crocheted shawl]

Many, many years ago, before I... uh.. Bakeshow... was born, her family lived in a little village called Salt Lake City. They lived somewhere in the middle of the valley, so they called the place Midvale. While they lived there, four children ran happily about, playing with the neighbors, roller-skating up and down the streets and frolicking merrily as children should. There was some rough housing amongst the young Bakeletts, for one day, the Noanie Bakelett pushed the Kimmee Bakelett off the roof of the car and broke the Kimmee Bakelett's arm (at least, that's how I've always heard the story. It's infamous in our family) which resulted in a rotten summer for the Kimmee Bakelett. Whenever they went swimming, she had to just hang out at the edge of the pool with one arm sticking out because she couldn't get her cast wet.

On one of the slightly less dramatic days, the Bakelett's mother carried a gallon bucket home in her arms. It contained a small pine tree. She dug a hole and planted the tree in the front yard. Truth be told, she planted many trees, a cherry tree and some other trees that I can't remember- but the cherry tree was in the back yard with the hill that was useless for sledding in the winter, but that did not stop the Bakeletts from trying...

I'm losing track...

This tree. The one in the front yard. The Bakelett's mother planted it. Ok. There we go. She planted it and over the years it grew and grew. Eventually the family had to move to Idaho. There were two Bakelett's missing and they had to go to Idaho to find them (also for the Bakelett Dad's job, but what's important here? come on.) because they refused to be born in Utah.

Several times over the years, as the Bakelett children grew up, they would return to the land of their birth and drive by their old dwelling. For several years it seemed to be falling into ruin. The new owners either didn't care about it, or just plain didn't know how to take care of a house. The young family was sad to see things changing, fences changed, windows changed, all kinds of changes took place on the Bakelett's former home.

Then one day, nearly 40 years after they had vacated the home, the Noanie Bakelett and the Kimmee Bakelett made their little sister drive past the house, just so they could reminisce. Though Bakeshow had driven past this house several times, she'd never lived there, so she didn't feel the emotional attachment to it that her siblings did. On this day, they saw a sign in the yard that said "FREE WOOD." The tree in the front yard. The very same pine tree that the Bakelett's mother had planted, was cut down and lying in pieces on the front lawn, pine covered branches hanging out of the trash bin on the side of the road.

The regular log sized logs were neatly stacked in the current owner's backyard- not available to the general passerby. What was available were the few stumps that were the big parts of the tree trunk. Noanie and Kimmee Bakelett thought it would be a smashing idea to take some wood home to their mother- just as a memento. So Bakeshow cleaned out the back of her car, spread out a blanket and helped Kimmee heft the 300 pound (at least) stump into the car. While Noanie watched, she decided that she also would like a memento of her childhood home. So there was some rearranging, and a lot of grunting and swearing and a few smashed fingers, as the three sisters hefted another section of the tree's trunk into the car's trunk (all we're missing is a moving trunk and an elephant trunk-which seriously, we could have used). This second piece, probably in the neighborhood of 350-400 pounds (that is seriously my guess... I may be way off and really we're just wimps) was not as easy to get in, but after some trunk tetris, the car doors were shut, silent prayers were said for Dory's shocks and breaks, and the Bakeletts were off.

Once they got home, they had to take the stumps out of Dory and put them into Kimmee's car- which is a lot smaller. Luckily the burly, macho neighbor was home and his wife sent him over to help (this is where I start to doubt my estimation of the weight- because where it took two or three of us to heft the wood even a little bit off the ground, he did it alone).

So now the two eldest Bakeletts are on their way home with a gift for the Bakelett mommy (and a little extra for their own yard) that is literally something from their childhood. As many grumblings and naughty words were said- and still will be said when they get to Idaho and have to figure out how to unload them- it was worth it. As Noanie said, "This was a once in a lifetime chance. If we didn't do it today, we might regret it later. Might as well do it while we can."

That kids, is a story about Carpe-ing the Diem.
It also reminds me a little of The Giving Tree

The End.

PS. did you know that toothpaste is very helpful in washing pine sap off of skin? Well, now you do.