…to grow things.
…to knit with a kitten on my lap.
…to wear wool socks.
…to sew a dress.
…to draw my own herbal grimoire.
…to drink wine as the moon rises through the trees.
…to sit around a bonfire in the cold of winter with friends and family, roasting s’mores.
…to read a new book with rain pattering against the windows.
…to watch the original Dark Crystal, and hope the new series doesn’t ruin it all.
…to make every ornament for the tree next month.
…to curl up with my love in a cold, dark house under warm, thick blankets.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: fall is my favorite season.
There is just something about the colors and the crispness of the air and the the still warm sun that lifts my spirits.
Even before I found knitting again, I have always lived for fall.
We moved to Miami from Philadelphia when I was in fifth grade, and the loss of the seasons made me hide from the sun and the brutal heat. SoFLo has a never-ending summer that took me years to become used to.
Where we live now is at just enough elevation to feel the change of season slightly love than the valley.
It is glorious.
I love the fall.
Theses days are a necessary evil. Homeschooling means shepherding the kids to classes and activities in town. It also means sitting in traffic in the Bay Area.
Usually it’s not so bad, since we drive try to avoid rush hour, but on days like this….On days like this I just want to be on my mountain.
The heat in the valley is a muggy eighty degrees. The high temperature up at the homestead is sixty-four and has that bite of fall I love so much. It’s also humid, but it’s the kind of humidity that makes me want to pull on thick socks and wrap a hand-knit shawl around my shoulders, tea in hand and kitten in my lap.
Sitting stopped on I-85 really makes me appreciate the quiet of the vineyard, the crowing of Helios and Turkey (our roosters) in the early morning, even our only partially paved road.
We planted a graden. Not a big one.
In fact, it is only three vegetables right now. Given how much work this property needs to just get it cleaned up, that is all I can handle right now. We have Swiss chard, yellow squash, and zucchini seedling starting to push up through the soil.
In getting the small area ready for our modest kitchen garden, we decided to go for a permaculture approach, it calls for far less weeding, but there is still weeding.
I was out there pulling the individual weeds that fought their way through the layer of hay we had laid out, and it struck me that such a small thing is such a big deal. One small weed doesn’t seem like a lot, but the fact that I am nipping them in the bud, one by one as they pop up, means I won’t have to deal with the later. I won’t be overwhelmed as the garden grows. I will be able to enjoy coming out here for a few minutes each day to water and tend to my vegetables, and not dreading the amount of work that needs to be done.
Small steps are a big deal.
I’ll leave you with the sunset the other day when we went to take the trash out.
I grew up in cities and suburbs. My mother’s idea of camping involves a
top-of-the-line fifth wheel with all the conveniences of home a hotel room without room service. I was raised to play inside, keep my dress clean, and blow out the curl of my hair.
My mother has no idea where she went wrong with me.
I live in a tiny cabin in the mountains. My kids only wear shoes to go outside if they have to go into the chicken coop. Yes, we keep chickens. The driveway down from the main roads is steep enough to give FedEx fits. We can see the Milky Way from the deck of our house because we have no light pollution.
I love the warmth of the sun on my skin.
I love the feel of dirt beneath my feet.
The idea of sitting outside beneath a tree, just for the chance to feel the solidness of the trunk behind my back and the wind in my curls is relaxing.
Actually being able to do it is lovely.
The days we do go down to the city are stressful, and I look forward to the weekend when we can all just settle at home.
Doug and I have been on a search for a home of our own. A place where we can steward the land and the wildlife. Having lived in the country for the last two years, I can safely say I have absolutely no desire to live in the city or a suburb ever again.
Of course, I have no crystal ball to tell me what the future will bring, but here’s hoping.
My husband always tells my son, “Always trust a woman’s intuition. They’re always right.”
The first time I heard him say this, I was a bit shocked. I don’t trust my own intuition. I second guess every decision I make. I’ve gotten much better over the years, but I’m a nervous wreck about almost everything I do.
Or, at least I am when I overthink things.
Projecting every bad scenario into every moment is a specialty of mine.
It is one of the things I am trying to break through meditation and mindfulness. This mistrust of my own intuition is what gives rise to the doubts, fears and ultimately the self sabotaging actions.
What if no one likes my writing? What if I get laughter at? What if I fail? What if…? What if…? What if…?
I need to trust that intuition.
After all, it lead me to marry a man who is raising our son to trust female intuition.