Gratitude and gourds

Pumpkins

We know I’m a crazy fall nut.

It’s one of my defining characteristics, I’d say — this obsession with changing leaves, apple cider and my beloved pumpkin spice lattes. When this love affair with autumn began, I really couldn’t say . . . but it only seems to intensify from year to year.

But this year? For as excited as I am about the months to come (read: very excited), this is the first time bidding adieu to summer feels bittersweet. I’ll miss my flip-flops and ice cream, gardening and running out in tank tops, but most of all? I’ll miss the farmers’ markets.

We have quite a few nearby, and our favorite is filled with Amish produce and goods that takes over a library parking lot on Saturday mornings. Spencer and I have driven out for tomatoes, zucchini, onions and breads (delicious, delicious breads) many times since late spring, and I felt the changing tide last weekend.

Gone were the colorful hanging baskets filled with flowers, the watermelon, the cantaloupe . . . in their place were gourds and Indian corn, fat pots of mums and sunflowers. It was a cool, misty morning, and I saw summer slipping away like sand between tanned fingers.

It makes me happy — and it makes me sad. It feels traitorous to autumn to admit that, but here we are.


Corn


This morning it was cool enough to need a jacket — bringing to mind all those early school days when I could finally dig out the sweaters and boots I’d lovingly selected back in the summer. Given it often stays hot here through the end of September, all the back-to-school duds my sister and I would pick out in August couldn’t be worn until October.

We waited and waited, gazing longingly at our cute cardigans and corduroys with their tags in the closet — hoping the temperatures would dip enough to unveil our fall wardrobe. There was nothing as disappointing as wearing old summer tops in a fresh new year — back when each September was a chance to reinvent yourself, begin anew.

September still feels that way for many of us, I think. Though my budget doesn’t allow for a reinvention of the ol’ wardrobe these days, I am looking forward to reorganizing my closet to find beloved pieces packed away since last year.

I want to focus more on what I have instead of seeking more — a feeling I’ve toyed with often since January, when I resolved to use up and make do instead of investing in additional stuff.

Gratitude and gourds . . . that’s what I want fall to be about.

Well, that and corn mazes. And cider. And ghost stories . . .

Who says we can’t have it all?


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11 thoughts on “Gratitude and gourds

  1. I love fall. It’s like the earth is preparing to sleep. I’m with you on “gratitude and gourds . . . that’s what I want fall to be about.”

  2. Such beautiful words! If you’re missing summer, you should move to California, it is still blazing hot here! You wouldn’t even know it is September. Having to wait it out is making me long for fall even more. Can’t wait for it to be cool enough to need a jacket.

  3. Yes! I love the notion of seeing what you have instead of adding up more stuff in your life. We become sometimes surprise of finding things we thought was lost. September truly invites retrospection in various ways.

    Like a speaker at my college once said,” September marks the true new year”.

  4. My favorite season! We drove out to Half Moon Bay on Friday and saw all the farms getting ready for the Halloween season. Pumpkins everywhere already cut off the vines! I can’t wait to go and pick out some for our porch. We can go a little crazy. I believe last year we went to 4 different patches.

    So much fun!

  5. You make me nostalgic! We have nothing close to fall down here, but it is (was) my favorite season when I lived in Indiana. I absolutely never was sad to see summer go. (BTW I love your new profile picture…adorable.)

  6. I live in California and we need a serious Fall and a very Nasty Winter–lots of rain and show.

    We don’t notice seasons very much like we did when living in the Mid-Wes for 20 years.

  7. Beautiful words! I love fall. It’s my favorite season. We recently got a cold snap and I dug out all my sweaters. They aren’t new to me…but I haven’t seen them in quite some time…and so I fell in love with many of them again 🙂

  8. I got fresh-pressed Honeycrisp apple cider yesterday after an impromptu orchard trip with family. Is it bad that I want to drive 2 hours for more today? Don’t judge me.

    I’m gonna miss the abundance of fresh fruit and veggies this winter. It’s a lot harder to eat healthier with fewer options!

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