I picked up my six year old from school and we drove to Trader Joe’s for a few supplies. The fifteen minute drive took us past trees with fiery leaves, blood-red leaves, golden leaves and leaves the color of the stripe running down the middle of the road. Leaves were literally falling as we drove past, touching my windshield before swirling in a happy little dance by the side of the road.
The weather has been uncharacteristically dry and so piles of leaves flutter under the trees. They cling to branches like flashy Hawaiian shirts. The lack of rain means they haven’t yet formed a soggy, slimy pile. A furious wind hasn’t flown into town and swept the trees clean. Yet.
But as I drove along today, I thought this might be the best day, the last day so many orange, yellow, red, and wine colored leaves will decorate the trees. I’m trying to notice and I pointed out the trees along the way. I want my daughter to notice the fleeting beauty, too. “Look at those yellow leaves, Grace!” I say, and point out a particularly vibrant tree. “Look over there! It’s orange!” “Isn’t our red bush beautiful today?”
Of course, my kids are like those road-stripe colored leaves, clinging to the branch before drifting away on a gust of wind. I hardly want to blink because I know that while my eyes are closed, even for a second, everything might change. Everything will change. It’s just a matter of time. So I try to notice. I try to see. I try to remember.
Tomorrow, the branches may be bare.