It’s Fall Y’all!

d121597845c054dd0477090ba394fbec

I love autumn – and it does light a fire in me every year. It rekindles my spirit and energizes me. The whole season is a ablaze, with its oranges and reds and yellows and I think that spark is contagious, at least to me.

First let me say that my cousin had her second child on Saturday, the fall equinox! He is adorable! I think I spotted a bit of redness to his hair too from the photo that they sent…we have lots of redheads in our family so it is possible!

On Saturday, we said goodbye to summer and waved hello to fall. The morning started with apple cider doughnuts and coffee (and milk for the kiddo). After being so nutritiously fortified for our day, Wyatt and I headed to the farm market for a few small gourds and pumpkins to place around the house and outside, to bring in that fall feeling. I put a little tiny pumpkin in his fairy garden, and I am amazed that the squirrels haven’t found it yet! Maybe there is some magic around there….lol. We hung a few suet bird feeders for our bird friends, as the summer season ends for them too.

Next we headed to a tagged monarch release, and watched as these delicate creatures of summer took flight and headed off to parts south. In the spring we will be able to check on our monarch (Lovebug). Hopefully he makes it to Mexico! It is amazing to think they undertake such a journey every year. Sometimes I feel like they can barely flit and fly to the nearest flower much less head across the country. We will be able to check an online database in the spring to see if he was spotted anywhere. Fingers crossed!

monarch

This is Pinkie Pie, Wyatt’s cousin’s butterfly.

Later in the evening, I made my favorite soup, Chickpea Dumpling from Oh My Veggies, and followed it up with some apple pie. We were planning on drinking some Angry Orchard cider to cap off the day, but we just couldn’t manage it after the soup and pie! Herbal tea for me and coffee for the husband, instead. Sunday we spent in one of our favorite places, walking through the woods. Our whole family loves being among the trees, and this time of year is especially beautiful. We even found a little toad on the trail!

 

 

Fall is a time to slow down, for self-reflection. To put some things away for the year. But also, sometimes, it is a time to clear out for the winter, make room, make changes too. I have some plans for this fall. Things I want to change. Things I want to do. I spent some time talking with one of my SIL’s about plans for Halloween and October. My other SIL is pregnant with my third niece and is due around the end of October so that is another wonderful fall happening in our family. I am just filled with shiny happy feelings about the season.

How about you? Are you a fall person? Do you have plans for this autumn? Or if you live in the southern hemisphere, what are your spring plans?

 

 

 

Rainy Day Weekend

Lately, I haven’t written much here. I sit down to write, but first I usually scan Facebook. Then honestly, I get too depressed to say anything. My stuff just seems so trivial, so little in the scope of what is happening around the world and United States – devastating fires, hurricanes, earthquakes. Shootings. Where does my little post about what we all did over the weekend, or what I read, or what we ate fit. And then I thought, it is like everything else. We grieve. We try to make things better where we can. And we live our lives. That’s all we can do. So, I have gotten back to being me, being us. Celebrating life, this world and its wonders. Because amazing things happen amongst the sad – like that woman who biked her way out of the California fires, with her 70 pound dog in her duffel bag. That was some serious grit and determination, and love. All love for that dog. She wasn’t a big woman by any means, but she and her dog got to safety – on a bicycle. Like I said, just dang amazing.

Our family spent the weekend celebrating the Halloween season. It’s my favorite time of the year, and now with a two year old, I am even more excited about it. We started off the weekend festivities Saturday night, when we went to the Detroit Zoo Boo. It was rainy but not too terrible, and it did not stop us from having a good time. My son was all smiles in his adorable skunk costume, loving every minute of the night. I was soaking wet, but I didn’t care. (He wanted to be carried by his father so, dad got the umbrella with the baby. I really need to add another umbrella to my shopping list so we have more than one!) They had some fun entertainers at the end of the trail, people performing with flaming batons and magicians and bands and music – it was a good time. Plus, I got to eat some candy. Lol.

The next day we were off and running again, this time to the apple orchard, a time honored Michigan fall tradition. This is a Midwest thing I found out, or at least it is not a widespread United States thing, which makes sense. Going to the cider mill in the fall is one of my favorite things we do all year – and we had awesome autumn weather. Blustery, gray, windy, rainy – at one point my son and I were sitting on the wide front porch of the shop, eating donuts, when a crazy strong gust of wind practically blew us off of the porch. We just laughed in the face of that wind!

Before we had the boy, we searched for a cider mill without the gimmicks, and found our perfect one – Bennett’s Orchard. Simple, great prices, great products. There are no bounce houses, bands, or booths of vend, which is fine if that is what you like. For us though, it is all about the locally grown and made products. Pumpkins, jam, doughnuts, honey, popcorn, and .. for parents .. hard cider, made on site. By law they can only serve three tastings per person, so my husband and I got different flavors and tried each others, splitting them. We have different palettes apparently – he really liked the crisp apple that had strong cinnamon flavor to it, while I liked the more tart ciders. We both agreed though, that the elderberry shine was so good that we had to buy a howler to come home with us. Perfect for around the bonfire.

We had a great rainy day weekend, spent outdoors. Remembering what is important about life. Family, experiences, making moments and memories.

First day of Fall!

IMG_20170921_184129

 

Happy fall, y’all! It is officially the first day of autumn, although here in Michigan it still feels like summer! I am so ready for these hot days to go away, and for the cooler, crisper weather to start. I want to wear snuggly sweaters, hoodies, scarves, jeans, boots; I want to drink cider around a bonfire in the slightly chilly evenings. I want my pumpkin spice latte to not seem out of season! It looks like I am going to have to wait though, as the next week is supposed to be in the 80s still.

This is my most favorite, most wonderful time of the year! I may not have the weather (yet!) but Halloween is coming, and that means spooky movies, chilling reads, and fun activities! My calendar is literally filling up! We have family trips to the apple orchard, which I learned last year is a regional thing; various Halloween costume activities at the zoo, at our local metropark, and at Haunted Nights at Greenfield Village. I have Wyatt’s costume bought and ready to go, and I feel ahead of that game. We made his Viking costume last year, complete with a Viking ship made from a wagon, which was pretty amazing. This year I went a little easier, and bought his costume from the Land of Nod. It is adorable – I will share it with you when we get closer!

My plans are not just where we can go – but what we can do. Simpler things. Things like a nature walk through the woods, crunching leaves underfoot, collecting chestnuts and acorns. I want to bake bread, and go to a football game, make a few (easy) fall craft crafts. Make soup. I can’t wait to make soup. I know I can make soup at anytime, but it’s not that fun to eat when it is 90 outside. At least to me, someone who lives in the Midwest. Soup with crunch bread sounds amazing. With goat cheese to spread on the bread – yum!

 

I’ve got so much goodness planned – I can’t wait! What about all of you? Any traditions? Anything you look forward to in the fall? What is your favorite holiday?