I will admit that fall in New England is beautiful.

I will concede that fact. However.

However, the arrival of the autumnal equinox never thrills me. Instead, I grow nostalgic over the waning summer, the loss of long, hazy days and oceanside memories. I feel anxious over summer’s hasty decline. I want more time to feel the warm breeze on my face, the scent of salt air on the wind at Cape Cod. I want more time to see the light of evening creep over the hills, to hear the soft sound of summer leaves limping in the humid air. I want to walk with Paul out to the garden and grab some tomatoes and basil for supper. And I long for more time to watch our children playing in the surf, laughing and running in its spray.

This past summer was long. And hard. But beautiful. It was the beginning of my thirtieth year, and in its slow months I learned painful, scary and wonderful lessons. We felt fear and disappointment. And we felt the incredible love and support of those around us, both known and unknown. I learned what it is like to be on the other side of medicine. What it’s like to be a patient. To hear bad news. To feel short bursts of concern and then relief. And as much as I love summer, this past one is not one I really want to repeat. And in that admission, I realize something. I may not want to repeat it, but I don’t want to forget it, either. I don’t want to forget the love, the painful lessons, the fears we faced. Because I want to learn from it, to grow, to feel the effects of experience in our future. To learn to look at the day I have today as so important. To not long for yesterday, or yearn too aggressively for the future. Instead, to calmly live in the here and now.

So this fall, I am going to try not to wish for the summer, or grow anxious over the approaching winter. I will learn to soak in the delights of fall. To notice the smell of crispy leaves underfoot. To enjoy the taste of warm apple cider. Okay, that’s about it. My list of autumnal joys are not nearly as long as summer’s. But I’m trying here…

I love New England. I do. Especially in summertime.  (oops.)

Happy Autumnal Equinox.

(And if you want to help a girl out, be sure to comment on your favorite fall enjoyments, whether in New England or some other clime. I could really use some help here…)

September 22, 2010 - 11:54 am

Colleen - How can you not see the beauty in the first fresh snow of the winter? And really even though winter seems long sometimes, I love every time we have a fresh fall of snow. It makes everything feel white, clean, fresh, and quiet.

How about ice skating with the kids? Ice fishing and the excitement of pulling that bass through the layers of ice. Warm cozy fires in the fire place on cold evenings. Nights playing Uno with the boys. Singing Christmas Carols which seem all too short that they are sung. How almost every time I can’t hold back the tears to Silent Night. Rejoicing in the birth of a Saviour.
Sledding time in the back yard. Snowmen in the front yard.

The list goes on and on.. Because winter has always been a favorite season of mine.

September 22, 2010 - 1:46 pm

Katie - Autumn is a beautiful time of year to enjoy a warm campfire munching on smores while knitting a sweater. (I still think you should learn.)

September 22, 2010 - 1:50 pm

Betsy - I know, Katie– I think I should learn, too. But… I keep putting it off. Maybe it has something to do with having 4 sisters who are expert knitters themselves? :)

September 22, 2010 - 2:04 pm

Dee - I just love being back where the leaves are so beautiful!! :)

September 22, 2010 - 3:04 pm

Betsy - And we love having you back, D!

September 22, 2010 - 6:49 pm

Jess - knitting is overrated..learn to crochet :)
Fall..the crispness of the cool air. Chilly nights, warm afternoons. The cozy of the sweatshirt that you remembered to bring along, the feel of someone’s warm hand in yours. Apples, pie, applesauce, crunchy leaves, brightly colored trees, the dark blue sky that is opposite from the sunrise.

September 22, 2010 - 7:40 pm

Sheila - The beauty of the warms tones of the autumn leaves as the sun passes through them in the afternoon… along a certain stretch of Route 140 as I head home. Try to check it out in the next couple of weeks.

September 22, 2010 - 8:28 pm

Julie - My favorite fall activity is apple picking with my children. We take the wagon and LOAD it up with bright red crisp apples. I love watching my children pick the bounty that God has given. I love watching my children bite into a crisp apple and the juice run down their chin. And they smile.
We pick at an orchard that was started by an ancestor and it was where my Grandpa grew up. I talk history with them..talk family relations with them…I want them to know their heritage. This is such a wonderful time to talk to them about my dad..about the Grandpa Dale they will never know. Apple picking with my kids is such a precious time for me…one I will always treasure.

September 23, 2010 - 4:45 am

Betsy - Your comments are helping :) — and Sheila, I’m going to have to check out that stretch of road, b/c you know how I feel about pretty light!

September 23, 2010 - 5:34 am

M. - Imagine living where you didn’t have a change of a season. Where the air temp would always be pretty much the same, and the weather… pretty much the same. I love the newness of a change in seasons. Although winter I enjoy the newness and then would prefer to have it be gone…But we can’t pick and choose and that’s the beauty of it all. This fall enjoy each and every moment, the crisp air, smell of cinnamon cider candles, pumpkin decorations and treats, deep dark fall colors, the leaves falling…Carve a few pumpkins and put them on your porch, then sit there and enjoy a nice cup of hot apple cider, or a caramel apple latte as you watch the candles flicker inside. One year I carved my pumpkin with the BIGest smile possible… it made me happy, even though you could see right inside! ;)

September 23, 2010 - 7:31 am

Ellen - Autumn is Fest and Fair season! Craft Fairs, Agricultural Fairs, Apple Fests, and all sorts of once a year (only in autumn) activities. Oh, and this year Dover, VT is turning 200 so they are holding a party/parade the first weekend in October.

While I’m not particularly fond of the cold that is coming, the cold does bring pretty leaves. And those leaves look awfully pretty in the sun. :-)

September 27, 2010 - 6:57 am

Jayme - Apple picking, HOT apple cider (my favorite part of fall!), hay rides, driving anywhere in New England and having the bright lights of evening shine thru the multi-colored leaves, campfires, fall decorating, pumpkin carving (and baking the seeds to eat!), cool evenings spent on the porch or in the house, curled up with a warm blanket (and cup of cider!), pies, baking (for some reason, i’m in the mood to bake most in the fall), Thanksgiving. Need more? :)

Your email is never published or shared. Required fields are marked *