Autumn is my favourite time of year. With just a few days until the autumnal equinox, I’m truly looking forward to the next few months.
I’m looking forward to chilly evenings that once again allow for the use of our oven. I’m looking forward to the changing larch and crisp fall hikes. I’m looking forward to our annual camping trip that always takes place around Halloween.
I’m looking forward to spending time gathering, chopping and stacking firewood for the wood stove. As much as I’m not looking forward to less daylight, I am looking forward to the weather that fall brings. I live for cooler days and fall mornings.
Mornings where the farm is foggy, the dew returns to the grass, and the dappled sun shines onto the ground peaking through the trees. Mornings where a jacket and socks are required. Mornings that turn into warm afternoons and delightful sunsets.
For one reason or another, I tend to slow down in the fall. I focus more on the little things; the warm and fuzzies. The small opportunities to be grateful, to feel inspired, and to just be. Taking note of the leaves crunching under my feet, or when it’s cold enough to see my breath. The smell of petrichor when it rains. The way the animals sleep in longer and move around the yard chasing the sun.
Autumn is a time of transition. The leaves change and the weather changes. We prepare for the end of daylight savings time. With everything that has taken place this year, I am ready for this transition.
Now more than ever it’s important to take care of one’s self and one another, whatever that looks like. For me, it’s reading a book under a cozy blanket with a cup of tea. Carving pumpkins for no one but myself (pandemic or not, we do not see trick-or-treaters). Buying a new journal to write down what I’m grateful for. Treating myself to a hot chocolate after hiking to the top of a mountain, or as I browse local shops. Talking to my loved ones on the phone. Sending them cards for no reason other than the fact that I am thinking of them. Spending time with my dogs. The list goes on.
Sadly, the garden must soon be dug up and prepared for hibernation. I’m looking forward to our final harvest and all of the delicious things we will prepare for the winter months, but I am not looking forward to the day we have to pull our lifeless crops from the ground and transfer them to the compost.
That being said, fall offers time to get things in order for next year’s garden. We will appoint the chickens to do a final sweep, allowing them to eat whatever they please from the remains of the garden. We will plant rows of garlic to harvest next year and tuck them under a bed of straw. The same goes for tulips. We will test our soil and till in any nutrients it might need. We will spend days canning and pickling and baking and sauce-making for winter.
The weather forecast for the next few weeks looks promising for our garden, so I will not be hasty to pull everything from the ground just yet. I will continue to enjoy our seemingly endless supply of tomatoes, zucchini, carrots, beans etc. Hopefully the smoke dissipates soon and we can revel in the final few days of summer.
“Is not this a true autumn day? Just the still melancholy that I love – that makes life and nature harmonize.” – George Eliot