Thursday, October 02, 2008

Kittens in Cut Outs

It's after 3PM on an Autumn weekday.
I get off the school bus and began the short walk past the Wynn's house and Grandma King's to home. The air is cool but the warm sun and my light jacket are more than enough to keep me comfortable. The wind blows quickly, scattering the fallen leaves from both our maple tree and the one in front of Grandma King's front yard. The wind kicks up some loose sand from our dead end dirt road and I close my eyes against the flying grit.
As I approach our house I see Suki sitting on the front steps. Her tail begins to wag and she watches me closely. At 11 years old she no longer meets me at the end of the street but she's always somewhere in the front yard waiting for me to return home safely. As I call out to her I look at our house. Taped inside the picture window is a cardboard decoration of a kitten in a pumpkin. Inside myself I jump for joy. Because of this display I know that Mom has been decorating the house with our Halloween decorations all day. When I opened the door there would be the ceramic pumpkins on the chest in the living room, Halloween figurines on the mantle along with holiday candles and candy bowls. Halloween is here!
This happened every year and for every major holiday, which arrived on Antilla Court via these cardboard decorations. Mom used to get them at Pembroke Drug or Fernandes Supermarket and taped them up in the window with a few weeks to go before the big day. Thanksgiving saw either a turkey or a cornucopia, Easter had the bunny or a chick, Valentine's Day had a big red heart (with or without an arrow through it) or a Cupid with a bow. Christmas was the only holiday that didn't merit a cardboard cutout, but only because all of the lights and tinsel would have overshadowed it anyway. I loved seeing these decorations because I knew that a fun day lay ahead in the not too distant future. This was a great family tradition.
We have many family traditions that continue to this day but this was one that didn't continue into my adulthood.
Unfortunately the many places that I lived in before my home today did not allow for big picture windows and cardboard decorations. Also, it was no fun to put the decorations in the window for myself because it spoiled the surprise of seeing them for the first time when I returned home on any given day. Finally, without Jenna to come home from school each day (to my home, anyway) I didn't see the need to put decorations in the window. Upon reflection, I regret that I didn't do it anyway.
Still, when the weather changes, and a major holiday approaches, I remember the young boy walking up the dead-end dirt road, looking for his dog and a window decoration to announce the season, lovingly installed by a Mom who knew that sometimes it was the simple things that meant so much.


Blogger Fox In Detox said...

My condo doesn't allow for Halloween decorations either...thus, the bane of my existence. Sigh....

Your house, however....hmmmmm.

8:44 AM, October 02, 2008  
Blogger gawland said...

Wow .. just seeing the name Fernandes sets the memory wheel in motion ..

12:43 PM, October 03, 2008  

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