Wednesday, January 13, 2010

I Made Myself Go Through With It

Did you guess that I really didn't want to take down my Christmas tree?

It was December 2, 2009 when I brought the tree indoors.
It had been growing on the south side of the house
(very near a bedroom window),
and it was getting way too large for its location.
So I cut the top 90% down and we used it.

It's very sweet... and I'd grown accustomed to it.

I have no idea what type of tree it is.
(Is there a tree expert in the audience??)
Very short needles - not too prickly.

All the crocheted bells were made by my Aunt MEA,
my gardening heroine, last year.

You might notice some of the paper book-ornaments we made this year.

Isn't it just so pretty?

Well, I did it. Last week. I forced myself to remove all the ornaments.
I put them away and carried the tree outdoors.
Here it is in the front yard.

I set it in the snow and tied it to a shepherd's hook.

Then I went indoors and took enough time to thread a short
popcorn and cranberry string.
(Do the birds really eat these? I've seen many birds sitting on the tree,
but the string remains.)

Now I must tell you something perplexing.
I'd gone to the grocery store today... nothing unusual about that.
We do eat (with the allowance left after purchasing bird food!). Ha!

Back to the story: I carried the groceries indoors and looked out the kitchen window. (Do I need to stop doing that?)
Look at what I saw!


Who in the world??
How in the world?
What in the world?

Is it safe to go outdoors?

Well, I did.

Looks like he's been very busy...

I haven't figured out who he is, or what he's been doing.
But he does look a friendly sort.

"My name's Shady Gardener," I ventured.

"Pleased to meet you," he responded. "Just call me 'friendly'."
(He does look that, doesn't he?)

"Well, Mr. Friendly," I began. "Can you tell me what you're doing out here?"

"Of course," he smiled. "I noticed the birds that you care for, and I noticed this lovely tree. I'm partial to caring for these small creatures. But I've been traveling quite awhile and have encountered a good deal of snow. You have a yardful, yourself."

"Yes," I said, smiling in return. "But what are you doing with your shovel?"

"Ah! I've decided to move the snow away from your tree... it's for the little critters, you know."

"Oh. Thank you very much," I said. "You must be tired and hungry. Wouldn't you like to come indoors for awhile?"

"No, no. I'm very happy outdoors," he said. "However, I did hear just a bit ago (a little birdie, don't you know?) that it may rain in the next day or so. Would you happen to have an umbrella? I'd just as soon stay for awhile, in case it snows again. But, should it rain, I'd rather not get wet!"

I told him, "I understand completely. I have a small umbrella in my car. I'd be glad to let you use it... especially after all you've done in my yard!"

So, now you know as much as I do.

He looked very happy when I departed.

And he's still standing there!

I don't think there's anything shady going on here... do you?


Gail said...

Isn't he wonderful! Styling with his brollie! gail

Anonymous said...

Hi SG~~ Looks to me like a little detective work is in order. The culprit did a great job. And the umbrella adds a very festive touch.

The red cardinals on your shepherd's hook are delightful creatures. They are not indigenous to my neck of the woods so viewing them on your blog is extra nice.

I can't tell you the genus and species of your tree but it sure is a beaut. Until they became price prohibitive, hubby and I would buy Noble or similar types with an open structure. I favor it to the ubiquitous cone-shaped Douglas firs.

Noelle said...

Well, all I can say is that my kids would be over the moon if a snowman showed up in our front yard like that ;-)

Tumblewords: said...

How fun!

Shady Gardener said...

Hi Gail! :-) Now... don't you think Iowa has a great Wintertime??

Hi Grace, I looked up Noble fir and it does look somewhat similar. I suppose this is a fir tree? (See how uninformed I am??) ha. Cardinals are really beautiful - esp. in contrast to the white snow!

Hi Noelle - You could always head up north for a bit! :-)

Tumblewords, Thanks for stopping, and for leaving a comment!

Rebecca @ In The Garden said...

Very shady indeed, but a fantastic addition, lucky you! :)

Garden Lily said...

How sweet. Nice that you took care of him, too, with the umbrella.

We haven't had enough snow for any snowmen to show up this year. But I'm not complaining, our driveway is clear also.

joey said...

There are so many reasons why I would just love to give you a *Big hug*, Shady, and this post is one :)

Anonymous said...

Hi Shady, a fine friendly fellow just showed up. Your well loved tree looks wonderful there, a place for the birds to perch and take shelter, even if they don't care for those cranberries, yet. So glad you had an extra umbrella for him, now he's ready for anything, almost. Lovely and delightful tale. :-)

Karen - An Artist's Garden said...

What a lovely story, a delightful read Shady

Rosemary said...

Shady lovely funny story... love mysteries..... the red umbrella adds a perfect touch of whimsy.......

Rose said...

LOL, I hope he stays awhile!

I'm like you--I just hate to take the tree down after Christmas. Not because of the work of putting everything away again, but because I love the Christmas atmosphere. I love all your ornaments--your bells remind me of the angels my mother crocheted for me quite a few years ago. Ornaments like these are treasured keepsakes.

Ralph said...

That whole story sounds a little shady to me but it sure was fun to read.

Paul Wynn said...

LOL, that's hilarious. You see a random snowman outside. Its looks perfectly proportioned to so he must have put in serious work

Cameron (Defining Your Home) said...

Wonderful snowman! That red umbrella is just a perfect accessory! LOL


Monica the Garden Faerie said...

I always hate undecorating the tree, too. I usually leave Piney decorated until late February, since she's a living plant, but the ornaments kept falling off when I opened and closed the blinds, so... but it's nice still having her in the living room!

Liza said...

That's very cute. And I really like your tree - it's beautiful, er, was beautiful.

Catherine@AGardenerinProgress said...

What a cute snowman and the umbrella in his hand is great! I hope he stays around for awhile.

Kathleen said...

I hear you on not wanting to take the tree down. I miss mine too. Yours was very pretty and nice you can make it serve a purpose outside too. Maybe I should "roll up" some snow? Would that help me get rid of the winter blues? Cute, cute snowman and so thoughtful of you to provide him with an umbrella! He'll last longer that way! So tell us, are any birds eating the popcorn and cranberry string??

troutbirder said...

I'm going with the Balsam fir Shady. It was my favorite Christmas as a boy. I still remember that wonderful smell. We dont do the tree thing anymore as the holidays are spent in Colorado. I miss that part of it.

Shady Gardener said...

Hello all, could you tell I was the creator of the snowman? Just the story-teller in me! ;-)

Hi Rebecca, Thanks! :-)

Garden Lily, We have more snow than YOU? I'm thunderstruck! (well, at least quite surprised!) ha.

Joey - SQUEEZE! Hugs back at you! lol.

Hi Frances, Glad you enjoyed the post! :-) I have to tell you "Mr. Friendly" has taken to squatting... it's the warm weather, I think! ha.

Thanks, Karen. :-)

Hi Rose, Keepsakes for sure. :-) The hopes of Mr. Friendly's long stay are rather slim. The weather forecast is for much more warm weather... and rain! Oops.

Hi Ralph. Thanks for the compliment. YOU are a top story-teller.

Hi Paul, I think it's the fact that he's such a hard worker... scooping all that snow kept him "in shape!" ha.

Hi Cameron... You don't think it was a bit over the top? lol.

Monica, So you're saying that even Piney is devoid of ornaments. How sad. You did such a job of decorating, too! :-)

Thanks Liza. It's still beautiful!

Catherine, I'm afraid Mr. Friendly may need some assistance soon. It's getting fairly warm outdoors... and you know what happens when that happens (and you're dressed so snugly). Yep - "perspiration." (Another word for melting?? :-(

Nutty Gnome said...

Haha, I love this - the mysterious Mr. Friendly with a brolly is great!

It's raining like mad here today so all our snow is going. Our first snowman turned into a gargoyle and our second snowman is slowly sinking and now has a bum worthy of Beyonce!

I hope Mr. Friendly stays a round for a little while longer :)

Shady Gardener said...

Hi Liz! I took a chance when I made this snowman. The forecast was to be much warmer by this weekend - and perhaps some rain, also. I'll have to see what he looks like tomorrow (we were gone all day today and didn't get home until about an hour ago). I'd like having Mr. Friendly stay longer, but there's plenty of Winter left - with, hopefully, time for more snow creations. :-) (Where are those grandchildren of mine?) ha.