Every Little Celebration

By Anita Garner

This year all our seasons got misplaced.  Smooshed together. The weather hasn’t matched any of them exactly and we’ve spent so much time inside, we’ve taken to decorating and celebrating whatever we want whenever the mood strikes.

In our part of Northern California, after record-breaking heatwaves this summer, a few leaves just now got together and decided to fall.  Out in the yard, if you know where to step, you can hear autumn underfoot.  On the tree outside my office window a few leaves are about to be in motion.  I’ll need to dedicate time to follow the progress of one particular leaf floating.  It’s a beautiful thing.

October is usually the start of my favorite time of year. Everything’s in place. Plaid shirts move to the front of the closet.  Flannel sheets go on the bed. The winter comforter comes out of storage and takes  a few turns in the dryer.

I’m not a big Halloween person, but the people I live with are and they started in September.  A rather large skeleton belonging to the Grand appeared and now sits on top of the hutch.  Orange twinkle lights are on a bookcase. A vintage centerpiece brought in by my daughter, the Thrifting Queen, is on the dining table.  It puts me in mind of the 60s and 70s when we used to decorate for every dinner party.

Some say spring is renewal time, but for me autumn has always been the season of promise. This year, especially, it’s not just the fragrance of pumpkin and cinnamon and nutmeg, though I’ll never underestimate their impact. It’s not just the anticipation of fireplaces and rainstorms and Hallmark movies.  This year, this season, in this house, there’s hope for better times ahead.

“Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.”
…George Eliot

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Flannel Season

By Anita Garner

“Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.”

-George Eliot

Hello, October!

I hear October arriving without checking the calendar. There are just enough leaves collecting in small drifts to make an autumn sound and just enough leaves moving around so I can look out the window and follow the progress of one leaf floating down. When leaves leave, it’s an occasion for celebration around here.

October is the start of flannel season in Northern California.  Everything’s in place. Plaid shirts are in the closet.  Flannel sheets are on the bed. The down comforter came out of storage and took a few turns in the dryer, fluffing up for  the next few months.

Some say Spring is renewal time, but for me autumn promises everything good.

It’s not just the fragrance of pumpkin and cinnamon and nutmeg, though I will never underestimate their impact. There’s also the anticipation of fireplaces and rainstorms. I wouldn’t mind if autumn stayed around forever.

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Half full or half empty?

Either “The sky is falling” or “Every cloud has a silver lining.”

Both points of view are evenly represented among my nearest and dearest.  Most days I fall into the silver lining category, which means of course I’m destined to spend much of my time with people who are always dodging chunks of the sky.

I like grey skies.  I live in Northern California in a fog belt and I am (perversely, some say) not a fan of summer.  I count the days until the season changes to autumn, which brings the chance of showers. 

My only grandchild lives in sunny Southern California, so I spend a lot of time there.  A few weeks ago, the four-year-old and I stepped outside her house and walked right into an unexpected June rain shower.   She stopped and turned her face up, and as  her new sundress got good and soaked she said,

“I love the rain.  Free water coming down.”

That’s my girl. 

Ó Anita Garner 2009