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Nov 12, 2009

Beginners.

It's my favorite time of year, Autumn. I love this season so much that I could burst into song about all the colors, the smells, the angle of the sun, the pumpkins etc etc, but I don't want to bore you, plus, I don't sing very well. I will tell you about two great things that you can do with leaves. You can rake together a big pile of leaves and jump into them, with or without friends. Or you can do something a bit more artistic. I did this a few years ago with my kids, and it turned out very well. You find some freshly fallen leaves, some that are quite wide, not skinny. You take them home and lightly wash them. Dry them carefully with a paper towel and leave them on the countertop in the kitchen. In a saucepan, on a very low heat, grate your favorite chocolate. Let it melt a little, then take it off the heat and stir until it is all soft. With your finger, rub a tiny amount of oil on the underside of the leaf, then spread the chocolate. Put the leaves on a plate and pop them into the fridge. After about 20 minutes or half an hour they will be ready. Simply peel off the leaves, and you have a perfect chocolatey replica, great for decorating a cake.

Grammar notes.

Vocabulary: a pile, to grate, a replica, to rub, to peel.

Exs:

At work today, I had a huge pile of papers to read. It was so depressing!

Just before you serve the spaghetti, grate the parmesan cheese on top.

My grandma has a replica of the Sphinx in her lounge.

The boy fell out of the tree, and ran home crying and rubbing his elbow.

The mandarin oranges you can buy now are so easy to peel.

Advanced.

The other day I was pulling into the parking lot outside of the local library, when I looked over to the nearby park and saw a lot of activity. There were all sorts of people there, some of them working. It is the middle of Autumn, and you can be sure that anywhere that there are trees, there will be lots of leaves to clean up. The park is one of the oldest in Wenatchee, so the trees are some of the biggest. I got out of the car and walked past a huge pile of leaves.Ooo, it was so tempting to jump in them, but I didn't. There was a loud, whooshing noise in the air; it was the sound of the leaf-blowers. Three men, dressed in brown, were moving slowly through the park, blowing the leaves into piles which were then going to be bagged up and taken away. What would happen if the leaves weren't removed? They would eventually rot, forming a slimey layer on top of the grass. This wouldn't be a problem if they could dry out, crumble, and feed the ground. Soon, you see, we will get snow, and if a thick layer of snow sits on a layer of slimey leaves, the grass underneath will die. So, as part of the local council's cleaning machine, paid for by wonderful tax dollars, the group of happy men, spent the day blowing leaves all over the place.

Grammar notes.

Vocabulary: tax, council, layer, whoosh, to crumble.

Exs:

Income tax is going up again. It is getting harder every year for the middle class.

The council has decided to spend more money on local parks.

She made a ten layer chocolate cake. There was cream in between each layer. It was magnificent.

Whoosh! went the rain and wind against the window. It was quite a storm.

Add some blue cheese to the salad. It crumbles easily and so is evenly distributed.

More verbs as adjectives:

The criminal was thrown into the van and taken away.

All the food is ready to be cooked: the potatoes and carrots have been peeled, the turkey has been stuffed, and the gravy has been seasoned.

The lamp post was smashed by the hooligans.

I was blown away by his comments!

The baby was fed, bathed, and dressed by her new nanny.

My neighbor was operated on yesterday.