My daughter lives in Oregon, about ten miles (as I write this) from the Holiday Farm Fire, which has consumed 170,000 acres and is only ten percent contained. A wild fire can cover ten miles in a night, easily. A good writin’ buddy lives in southern Louisiana, where hurricane season is pouring misery down by the bucketful. I also have family in coastal California, and their reasons to wear a mask even indoors are just piling up.
Between hoping for rain in Oregon, and hoping it will stop raining in Louisiana, I know this is not, for many people, anything approaching a wonderful time of year. September has been just one more month in a grueling progression of months, and October isn’t looking too cheery either.
And yet, I still find things to love about the transition from summer to fall. I love, in fact, that nature where I am, despite tantrums and tragedy elsewhere, is just rolling placidly along as she has all year. Nights are dipping into the forties, days are coolish and getting shorter. I find so much to delight in this time of year, including…
Fuzzy beasts. The horses and cats especially, are growing winter finery. They look more cuddly and are lovely to pet.
Hot soup. Pepper pot, French onion (servi avec gruyère, bien sûr!), broccoli cheddar… I could rhapsodize for pages about the the pleasure of a hot bowl of soup, warm homemade bread, and a house smelling of fresh baked wonderfulness.
Hot drinks. I always love a hot cuppa tea first thing in the day, but when temperatures drop, hot tea is even better. Also hot chocolate, hot mulled cider. Toddies. Irish coffee…
Fall flowers. Zinnias, asters, the last blast of the roses, pansies ready to hunker down for winter, chrysanthemums in a zillion colors… The flowers make a brilliant last stand this month.
Oatmeal, with cinnamon, nuts, blueberries, a dash of cream, butter, or–blame my dad–a scoop of ice cream and a sprinkle of brown sugar. Yes, he went there. For BREAKFAST.
Fuzzy socks! They deserve a blog post of their own.
Long sleeves, fleece, and all the soft, comfy, cozy cold weather clothes. (Especially the ones that mean with enough layers, I don’t have to wear a danged bra when I go off the property.)
Extra blankies. I’m probably one of those people who could benefit from a weighted blanket. Instead I leave the heat off in my bedroom and burrow under flannel sheets (thanks, sister Maire), and lots of quilts. Of course it takes the thought of a mug of hot tea to get me out of my nest in the morning.
Dramatic sunsets. Those brilliant red, orange, and magenta sunsets are already starting where I am (probably due to wild fire smoke plumes), and they are impressive.
Shorter days, meaning longer evenings to wind down, read, read, and read. And that reminds me…
My Heart’s True Delight, an autumn HEA, goes on sale at the retail outlets on Tuesday. I’ll put a signed copy in the mail to each of three commenters. Just tell us what, if anything, you are enjoying about this time of year. (Or what you are NOT enjoying!)