The weather in California might act otherwise (but then again it’s California, land of 63 degree winters, so we’ll nod at the sun and keep going), and the Autumn Equinox is still about 2 weeks away, but Fall is here, or more technically, Fall is near – but that nearness is very very very close. There’s a crispness in the air, there’s occasion to use the word ‘brisk’ when describing the weather, and things are all aswirl and changing. It’s Autumn!
Fall means harvest time. Sometimes this means literal harvest time, like having to deal with the bumper crop of pumpkins your backyard garden has generated (ideas: pie, pie, pumpkin risotto, more pie, pumpkin bread, jack-o-lanterns in October, cheerful porch tableaux until then…and, pie!), or taking a drive to the country and picking apples (for those of you in the Midwest and the Northeast, please please get on a hay ride, drink some fresh hot cider, and get an extra bag or two of crisp apples and think of your friends on the West Coast who will certainly get to enjoy Autumnal things and even possibly apple-pick…but it’s not the same, though we’re not complaining). Sometimes this means relationship-type harvests, where you take stock of who you’ve seen and who you wish you had (and make plans to remedy and augment the latter), where you bask in your recent time with friends and family over the summer, revel in the golden glow of your lake and beach memories, then get to planning inside activities with them in the coming cooler months. Sometimes this means emotional harvesting – where you realize how much certain people mean to you, and how much you’ve grown both with and because of them. Sometimes this means helping others, particularly our children, harvest their summer experiences and turn them into transformative fuel for the upcoming school year -- we’re helping our kids go back to school, or start kindergarten (they grow up quickly!) or for some of us, sending our now-technically-legal-adults off to college. Fall is a time of wrapping up, both literally and figuratively. We wrap ourselves in soft scarves, lightweight coats, and sturdy boots so that we might embrace adventures outside and feel crisp and collected. We tuck notes in our children’s pockets, or sometimes our darlings, or sometimes ourselves (and sometimes, all of the former). We might wrap up our summertime, hang our last round of outdoor laundry (as if to catch the last bit of a certain kind of summer sunshine on a certain set of sheets), set off for one or several more weekend getaways (maybe to Big Sur, maybe to a cabin in Yosemite, maybe to our parents’ place at the lake, or a tiny house in the Pocanos…), but just before or after we do any or all of that, we’ll pause for an unintended but deeply felt second and be grateful.
Whatever you do this Autumn, do it with your whole heart and an open spirit – and welcome the changes, however they occur. You are brighter and braver and more knowing and hopeful and capable of love and wonderment than you ever let yourself acknowledge, but we do. We believe in you. xoxoxo
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