The weekend rainfall was all the permission I needed to stay in, drink tea, and start making preparations for fall. We tried on hand-me-down shoes, jackets and hats for size, consigned too smalls and extras, put away sleeveless rompers, canned tomatoes, cooked warm comfort foods, meal planned, read by the fire, organized the play room, and donated a whole whack of loved but finished toys. There was very little summer about our days. Swimming is on hiatus until the warmer temperatures subside from the forecast for good. We all put socks on this morning, because the hardwood floors were cold.
I feel like planning. I made fall travel plans, by myself and away with Rich. I purged a bunch of stuff to make our house flow more efficiently when the cold weather comes and we spend more time indoors. I gave the fireplace a test run and thoroughly enjoyed the smell of burning firewood that permeated the main floor, drifting up the stairs to our bedrooms. It felt cozy, and it felt right.
I take comfort in embracing the transitory nature of autumn. It feels a lot like nesting in preparation for a baby. I laundered and filed seasonally appropriate clothes, moving girls up a size and storing away special baby clothes to save for ... for whom? Nieces or nephews, grand babies, friends' babies to come. I took out quilts to play with and stored away sunscreen and swim goggles. I gathered root vegetables and the last of the tomatoes to turn into something warm and nourishing in our bellies.
It feels very primal. My biology can sense the impending cold months, and experience has taught me how best to prepare for what's ahead. Fall is something to celebrate, and that reminds me to keep one foot in the present while the other is in a Sorel snow boot, somewhere in December. I am enjoying walks outside, putting knitted hats and woollen slippers on Summer. I wrap Hailey and Robin in our outdoor blanket in the stroller while we walk Abby to school. We crunch leaves, gather fallen acorns, and avoid the bees making frenzied, last-minute rushes for the flowers.
Anyone with an Instagram account knows how accessible autumn's beauty is. The show-off leaves blow about, and scurrying animals add movement to the pictures. In our house, there is baking to be smelled and then enjoyed once it cools, slow acoustic guitar music in the background, dark spices added to our breakfast oatmeal to warm us from the inside. I mourn the loss of summertime, my quickly-fading suntan and afternoons reading in my floatie chair. Sweaters, chai tea and walks in the woods make for a pretty good consolation prize.