The Cycle of Life

The leaves aren’t just dropping gracefully from the trees—it seems they’re dive bombing with a vengeance! We get one batch up, high-five each other for a job well done, then turn around and both yards—front and back—are covered again. 

Leaf removal at our home is an all-family sport.

Once we rake the leaves from the yard to the driveway, Len uses the mower to mulch them.

 From there, the pulverized leaves get transferred to the yard cart.

Where they get a ride to the compost bin.

Part of an ongoing cycle, they’ll be used again in next year’s planting process.

Where are you in the cycle of life? 

Listen with your heart,

Laurie Buchanan

Whatever you are not changing, you are choosing.”
                — Laurie Buchanan and our Facebook page

© 2011 Laurie Buchanan – All Rights Reserved

37 thoughts on “The Cycle of Life

  1. Looks like a good outside activity! Sunshine and recycle !

    I always wonder why people put their leave out on the curb for pick up and then in the spring go out and buy mulch for their gardens when the mulch is free…

  2. We’re half-way there – still have the lovely bright red leaves on the maple trees. While I love the color at this time of year, I’m not fond of what is to come. Starting to sift thru recipes for a mroe pleasant transition. As soon as hubs retires we are seeking a place south where we can enjoy the outdoors – golf, kayaking, hiking, gardening – all year long. When time grows short in life I don’t want to spend months on end cooped up. (Sorry, winter) 🙂

    • Susan – Great minds think alike. Len and I are in the conception stages of thinking about where we’re going to relocate within the next 2-3 years. I’ve lived in the Pacific Northwest before (Washington state) and loved it. Not too long ago the AARP magazine ran an article about the top 10 places to retire in the continental United States. Bend, Oregon was number one. I actually requested (and received) a package from their Chamber of Commerce. And there’s a WRITING RANCH! It doesn’t get much better than that. Nope, there’s simply no way I’m going to shovel snow in my little-old-ladyhood 🙂

  3. Our world has turned from blazing oranges and reds to beautiful yellows. The oddest leaf year ever. Probably because we haven’t had a killing frost yet. Where am I in the cycle of life? I change daily. Sometimes hourly. Sometimes by the minute. Right now, someone is raking of the leaves of the tree of one of my creations. (LOL! Just made that up.)

  4. Our “Orange Brains” embrace the cycle of life because we create and thrive on change. Looks like your puppies are embracing the gifts of change!

  5. I am exactly where I am supposed to be whether I know where that is or not……..usually not. It appears when I think too much about WHERE I am, I stall or slow down the cycle (like opening the washer to see where it is). But when I trust (leave the lid down) and move forward with things that FEEL good (rinse), the cycle moves quickly and purposefully. I guess that would put me in the SPIN cycle now, ready to get out, be hung on the line and blow in the warm BAHAMIAN breeze of life. 🙂

    • Lisa – Your comment — the wonderful washer maching analogy — just goes to PROVE that you need to get back to blogging! The rest of us would do even better to be on the receiving end of that type of inspiration! See ya Sunday at 10am 🙂

    • Magsx2 – At this point they sure do seem never-ending, however, mid-winter when it’s feet deep in snow, I’m pretty sure I’ll wish there was a leaf or two around 🙂

  6. I’m somewhere between Len’s cart and the compost pile Laurie. It feels good to be recycling some of the past material out of both my writing practice and art studio into a new form of communication via a whole new channel (you tube) and finally getting on with the phase 2 aspects of projects begun (through a very different me) way back in 94 and 99 in regard to both art and writing.

    • Alison – Good for you that you’re doing YouTube. My friend, Sheila Glazov (author of “What Color is Your Brain”) does presentations on YouTube as well. In fact, I think she has her own “channel.” Moving along to phase 2 of projects means you’re moving forward. Fantastic!

  7. Oh a whole family sport – love that image and then the picture of the doggies enjoying.
    Our leaves are not really falling yet and we are having warm sunshine again today…but the wind and rain are due. I can just go out and sweep the driveway.
    And then I think of your post about the eggs in the compost bin.

    I let go of a big project today and it came down like a bomb…the release was important…I am still letting go of my attachment but feeling lighter and better for the decision. Just laying on the ground, not ready to sweep it up 🙂 It is sunny

    One of our whole family events was raking the neighbor’s huge yard of leaves each year…it was a whole weekend project, but all 5 of the huge maples are gone and the replacement trees take about 45 minutes to remedy. Then again the kids are not home any more…and I have my little rake to take on my daily walk and clean out the storm drains on my route. The cycle…

    • Patricia – “The release was important” — that’s fantastic! I’m glad your feeling lighter and better after laying the burden down. And I love your idea of taking a walk in the yard with a little rake. It makes the task sound like a lot more fun!

  8. those dogs look mighty comfy in that pile of leaves

    I think with our 24/7 lives we tend to forget that life is full of cycles, necessary cycles. Only those people on the equator get to escape the changes of seasons, but I think, in their own way, they, too, have cycles and seasons. The living need to rest and renew. Some of life dies off to make room for new life. Like your leaves, so much of life is recycled into something else, something new, and sometimes, something grander. You might be eating the nutrients of those dead leaves a year from now as you spread your compost for your vegetable garden, and, now you are leaf, too.

  9. Snow fell here in Denver last night although the trees were still covered with beautiful leaves. Reminds me of the life cycle when body parts start failing before you are ready 🙂

  10. Laurie I like the idea of being one of those leaves and “dive bombing with a vengeance” but in the cycle of life I think I am just starting to turn my brightest colours and have awhile to go before I am ready for mulching.

  11. I read Laurie where you say that you and Len are deciding where you might want to re-locate. I’d love to see you on the East Coast, but that’s not your thing, and the way things are going you’d be shoveling snow as much as you are in Crystal Lake! Heck tomorrow is October 29, and we have some snow heading into the NYC area! I love Terrill’s response! We’re roughly at the same point that our sun is in the vast scheme. Middle age to take things in their best interpretation. But the leaves are changing now, finally, the temperatures have plummeted, and winter is a real proposition!

    • Sam – Don’t say that four-letter “s” word just yet…They got “it” it Colorado already, and now you’re expecting “it” this weekend. We’re sandwiched in the middle which means “it” will be here soon enough. Not wanting to spend my silver and then golden years shoveling snow, we are, indeed, at the due diligence stage of looking at a different location for retirement. The Pacific Northwest has a pretty strong pull right now…but we’ve got some time before we have to make a firm decision.

  12. We have never had to shovel snow here in Kaikoura 😉

    Grass is getting over knee high though, need to mow it soon (front lawn is lower, back has gotten away – problem with an acre of ground).

    • TedOhhhhhhh, I’m jealous. You’ve never shoveled snow and your grass is currently knee high. I intend to live vicariously through you throughout our winter as it will be your summer. While I’m posting about woodburning fires, you’ll be posting about long walks and flowers in bloom 🙂

      • Speaking of walks – yesterday started with Ailsa and I taking the dogs for a two mile walk. Then I went out and played 18 holes of golf (a 5 mile walk), then in the evening I delivered some vitamin C to a friend with a chest infection, and took the dogs with me, for another mile walk – actually I jogged about half of it. It was a glorious still evening here, warm (about 70F), just a thin sickle moon, a couple of planet downs near the western horizon, cloudless sky filled with millions of stars, gentle shusshh of the waves on the beach.

      • Ted – Sheesh! I got pooped out just reading about your tramping adventures! And I loved how you ended with the “tentle shusshh of the waves on the beach.” 🙂

  13. Love the top picture with your two cute helpers 🙂 There is a big Bing Cherry tree out front my house and it is still dropping leaves. I live in a townhouse community and the landscapers come around once a week and blow, but couple hours after they are gone, with all the trees in the community there are lots of leaves on the ground again.

      • At the moment it is still dropping its leaves, but even naked it is lovely. In the spring its blossoms fill the tree and it is gorgeous. The downside is I have to start parking my car elsewhere because when the blossoms fall, and then the berries, and then the seeds…they do damage to the paint if I don’t wash the car off everyday. This goes on for 2-3 months, even though the leaves have come out. The falling leaves are lovely in the Fall 🙂

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