For as long as I (Joy) can remember, I've really tried to keep secret the fact that I don't like fall. I've tried to analyze it and determine what I find so distasteful, but I can only piece together some weak theories. Could it be because I never liked the start of school as a child? Maybe it's because I'm very cold-natured and don't like the onset of cooler weather. When listening to others rave about the nip in the air, the changing color of the landscape and then the eventual falling of the leaves, I almost feel unpatriotic to suggest that these are all signs that the warm, wonderful summer is gone - completely gone! I silently wonder what they're so excited about.
That is, until this year. Something strange and unexplainable has happened during this first year of farming and for some unknown reason, when the first thoughts of fall entered my mind around August, I felt some twinge of excitement. As I pondered the onset of Autumn, I found myself looking forward to cooler weather, making a variety of soups, and being inside our warm, wood stove-heated home. What could have possibly reversed my dread of this season?
Only brief analysis was necessary to discover the cause for the change of heart. WORK...it's all about the work! Why, with the last of the garden produce coming in, the farmer's markets ending, the tractor service concluding for the season, and the days getting shorter, we won't have as much work to do each day! Fall - a built in break for the farmers. How clever! I'm excited just thinking about it.
In celebration, we placed small pumpkins from the boys' garden throughout the house and bought big ones, from a favorite NC farm, that we stacked on hay bales borrowed from the cows and promised to be returned at the end of our decorative celebration. Never mind that the free range chickens are pecking holes in our display pumpkins and the cows are breaking into the hay bale deco area, it's fall! Time to celebrate, time to slow down a bit, time to recount God's faithfulness in getting us through the difficult summer. Breathe in that chilly air, look at the incredible change of colors from green sameness to brilliant reds, yellows, and oranges. Browse through the crockpot cookbook and make some hot cocoa as surprise for the kids. Enjoy a cup of hot tea with morning devotions. It's fall, it's finally here! I couldn't be any happier to see its arrival. Fall - the farming family's built-in break. I just love it!