Autumn Preparations

laughing witchBack in September when I ordered my daughter’s Halloween costume, the end of October seemed an eternity away, but it’s here now. Crop dust fills the air now, creating orange, pinks, and purple-greys at twilight against which the newly naked trees find themselves silhouetted. No longer do colorful songbirds hide among leafy branches, instead giant ravens perch on spindly branches cawing their “Nevermore” warning. The wind blows in change.

October that time of frozen mornings, deliciously warm afternoons, and chilly eves. Continue reading “Autumn Preparations”

A Special Kind of Canvas

We were blessed with positively beautiful weather in Southern Wisconsin, the beginning of an “Indian Summer” of sorts—with bright sunshine, crisp, clean air, brilliant blue skies. Although the fall color change is past its peak, bright gold and deep red leaves still adorned enough of the canopy to lend a sparkle of color to the landscape.

Our family wasted not a minute of this beautiful day. Continue reading “A Special Kind of Canvas”

Apple Picking

Sometimes the best time is the one you have close to home, and on a luscious fall day like last Saturday, apple picking is the perfect activity. Our daughter had spent the week immersed in a unit centered on the theme of “apples” at school, so she was primed and ready to go when I mentioned the possibility of visiting an apple orchard for a day of fresh air and apple cider.

After our daughter’s swimming lesson, we donned our jeans, sweatshirts and sunglasses and headed for Edwards Apple Orchard in Poplar Grove, IL, just across the state line. Continue reading “Apple Picking”

Prairie Calm on an Autumn Walk

There is something magical about a walk on an Indian Summer day, when sunshine warms the soul, but Fall lurks in the shadows. The prairie has passed its crimson and gold peak, and now the trees begin to take over the palette. The remainders of flowers past their prime, aged and brown, adorn the landscape with the beauty of having lived fully and given all. Continue reading “Prairie Calm on an Autumn Walk”

I’m So Happy about the Moon and the Stars

I awoke to a dark sky and frost covered landscape, confirming, in spite of delightful fall we had this year, that the winter is, indeed, on its way. Sigh.

After getting the day’s things together and emptying the contents of the preschool’s sandbox from the inside of my daughter’s mittens, I helped her into the car seat, and we left in the predawn light. I pointed out to her the setting harvest moon just above the west horizon.

“Ohhh.” She put her mitten-covered hands to her face. “It’s beautiful. The Moon is saying ‘Hi’ to me.”

“And, look!” she went on, “There’s Little Star and all her friends.”

Indeed, Orion was bright chasing his prey across the brilliant blue-black sky.

She laughed, “Mama, the moon is tickling the car!”

“I think he is wishing you a very nice day.” I said.

“Yes. And look, mama, the moon and the stars are following us to school.”

She was quiet as she twisted and turned in her car seat to get a better look at the setting nighttime sky.

“Mama, I am SOOO happy about the Moon and the Stars. They are beautiful.”

“So am I. So am I.” I smiled.

Perhaps the shorter days and early mornings without the sun aren’t such a bad thing after all.