As Fall Slips Into Winter.....
Tuesday, December 13, 2016
In my youth, I was extremely opinionated, and I still am, but I have actually mellowed out a lot over the years as my pace has become slower and my girth has expanded. I used to hate Winter as it kept me from doing all the things I liked to do, which were almost always outside. Back then, I liked Spring but Spring in my area is still too chilly to do anything with water and I love water. I loved Summer with all the outdoor activities like sports, swimming, water-skiing, and camping. I disliked Fall as it just seemed like a prelude to Winter, which I always dreaded. At some point my views softened. For one thing, I tolerate Winter much better now that I am older. Spring is now my favorite season. I still enjoy summer but I have a new appreciation of Fall too.
There are still some things I don't like about Fall. The warm weather birds migrate south. The amphibians, reptiles, and even some of favorite mammals go into hibernation. The trees, shrubs, and perennials go dormant. Everything turns mostly brown. We have less sun. It gets progressively colder. It snows. I have to wear more clothes. Plus there are the elections with weeks of robocalls. It seemed like a time of loss. I must admit that I still don't like to see these things occur but I also see the advantages of this season now.
There are so many really nice things about Fall in my area so I am going to celebrate the cornucopia of Fall with you and thank this Fall for being a good one as it comes to a close. What is so good about Autumn?
1. With Fall there are less bugs, especially biting and stinking insects, like ticks, wasps, hornets, and mosquitoes. They get knocked back some until they are eventually gone.
2. The oppressive heat and humidity ebb and are eventually gone too. Some days are perfect, sunny and warm.
3. I can save on utilities. I'm able to turn off the A/C. Open the windows. Breath in the fresh air. Light a fire in the fireplace or woodstove if it gets a little nippy.
4. The summer tourists are gone. The lakes are less crowded. It's often the best time of the year to camp out or have a picnic.
5. The neighborhood is quieter due to the the start of school. Fall sports return and keep the kids happy and occupied. Routines return.
6. We have beautiful harvest moons and clear night skies for star gazing.
7. There are less people in the stores shopping during the day.
8. It's a great time to walk and bike.
9. It's a good time to read, inside or outside.
10. It's ideal for doing outdoor projects - gardening, house maintenance. Less sweating. More productive.
11. For those who mourn the lost of an hour of sleep in spring with the end of DST you get your hour back. LOL. The days are shorter, the nights are longer, it's cooler. It's conducive to better sleep.
12. T.V. programming is improving. There are new Fall shows plus Halloween movies, Thanksgiving movies, and Christmas movies.
13. It's the perfect time to go to or have a rummage sale
14. It's a good time to observe nature - watch the fall migrations of birds and the warblers and geese fly South for the winter. Squirrels building nests and storing nuts.
15. I enjoy raising a Fall garden, harvesting Fall veggies, canning or freezing food for winter. Fertilizing, cutting back the gardens and putting them to bed for the winter.
16. I love Fall flowers - like mums - the last burst of colors before winter.
17. I like the colors of fall, the changing leaves and road trips to see the burgundies, oranges, yellows, reds. The maple trees, sumac, sassafras, dogwoods, ginkos, witch hazel, blueberry bushes, smokebush, redbuds, burning bush, sweetgum, crepe myrtles, hickories, oaks.
18. I like decorating with Fall things like acorns, nuts, seeds, cornstalks, gourds, fall scented candles.
19. There are fun Fall activities, like tail-gating, Fall festivals, Harvest festivals, hay rides, bobbing for apples, corn mazes, carving pumpkins, going to orchards and pumpkin patches, raking leaves and jumping into them, walking in crunchy leaves, sitting by a blazing bonfire roasting marshmallows and hot dogs.
20. I like voting at our township polling place - I will see some of my neighbors the only time I will see them in a year.
21. I love the peaceful feeling I have when returning home to my cabin in the woods at dusk where the warm glow of lights in windows melts my stress and soothes my soul.
22. I love Halloween - decorating inside and outside, trick or treating, parties, visiting haunted woods and houses. Black, orange, and purple. Witches, pumpkins, skeletons. Halloween foods like chili, hot dogs, popcorn, pumpkin seeds, smores, roasted marshmallows, caramel apples, candy corn, brownies, hot cocoa, apple cider.
23. Thanksgiving is my favorite eating holiday with things like turkey, gravy, stuffing, mashed potatoes, candied sweet potatoes, green beans, cranberry sauce, hot rolls, apple pie, pumpkin pie.
23. I enjoy the food of the Fall season - returning to baking, casseroles and slow cooking. Comfort foods like chicken and dumplings, pot pies, mac and cheese, soups, stews, cobblers, and pies. Plus Squash, turnips, rutabagas, kohlrabi, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, beets, carrots, fennel, parsnips, greens like Swiss chard kale/turnip/spinach/collards, leeks, yams, potatoes, corn on the cob, mushrooms, pears, tangerines, pomegranates, grapefruit, quinces, elderberries, persimmons, kiwi, grapes, figs, dates, chestnuts, and all assortments of nuts in my area like walnuts, pecans, hickory nuts. Spices and flavorings like cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, cloves, ginger, vanilla, sage, bay, garlic, maple syrup. Hot herbal teas and the smell of hot coffee. Yum!
24. I like the build up to holidays like Christmas and Hanukkah - the sights and sounds, decorations, music, parties, events, the smell of cookies and candy.
25. Finally, the end of Fall arrives with the return of the vernal equinox, which is my anniversary. The days start getting longer again which really floats my boat.
I hope you have enjoyed this Fall as much as I have and that you will find some good reasons to enjoy winter too.