A guest post by Marci Jefferson*
When I was a child in the south I looked forward to autumn’s cooler days and the evening smell of burning leaves. Our landscape burst into kaleidoscope golds and reds, and woodsy roadways we traveled every day became colorful tunnels. I’ll never forget the plump round perfection of a giant pumpkin my grandfather brought home one year. Or looking forward to dressing up as something other than yourself every Halloween.
Now I live in the midwest and, though much of the land is preparing for rest, the farmers markets are still full of the last harvests. I’ve been stocking up on dried herbs for a winter’s-worth of savory stews and indulging in Pumpkin Spice Lattes. I’ve also been working with my kids to get their trick-or-treat costumes together. They seem to love this time of year, too. To see my son’s eyes brighten at his first sip of hot cider this season surprised me. And my daughter’s comfort as she cozied into a big fleece scarf by our bonfire this weekend filled me with a nostalgic joy I didn’t expect.
Why is fall wonderful? Not just because leaf piles are such fun. Maybe it’s the coming together against the chill. Does the brisk air just invigorate us after the heat and rush of summer? I’m not certain, but I’m thankful for the sense of calm and renewal it always seems to bring. I’m especially thankful to see my children enjoy one of nature’s many gifts.
*By way of introduction: Marci Jefferson is my friend, critique partner, and “house sister” – since her debut novel, THE DUCHESS OF RICHMOND, was recently purchased by St. Martin’s Press for publication in 2014. You’re going to be seeing a LOT more of Marci!