November Treasures


It’s been a banner November here, so far. Remarkable skies with fascinating clouds, leading to phenomenal sunsets.

I’ve wanted to stop and soak it all in, but it’s been such a busy month, that I can’t alight for long.

There are pine cones to collect.

There are all sorts of little treasures, above and below. And I want to hold them all in my arms. Or bottle them up.

Now is the time for baking, roasting, simmering spiced drinks, and sharing.

For those of you in America, I wish you a Happy Thanksgiving, filled with nourishing food and good company.

For everyone, I wish you a pleasant time of harvest and cozy peace.

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Cozy Autumn Things

We are full-on Octobering here! Excitement builds between birthday celebrations, fall festivals, pumpkin farms, and a splendid Autumn Potluck!

It’s the season to try new beers, and new breweries, such as the delightful Viewpoint Brewing, situated right on a beautiful lagoon.

At home, we hosted a fabulous Autumn Potluck, to celebrate the season with our friends before the holidays approach.

I made a cheese board, with four cheeses, assorted candied nuts, olives, cornichons, several fruits, and crackers. I also set up a chili bar with two types of chili: my own meat chili, and this delicious, vegan Slow Cooker Quinoa, Sweet Potato, & Black Bean Chili from Kitchen Treaty. Of course, I offered several toppings: homemade guacamole, scallions, cilantro, shredded cheese, sour cream, and corn chips.

I also baked this to-die-for Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese from Kitchen Konfidence!

I’m telling you, this is one of the best dishes I’ve ever tasted. And it should take pride of place on your holiday table!

I made mulled cider with cinnamon sticks for stirring. My husband chose some local craft beers for tasting. The children had sparkling cranberry juice.

And I made two kinds of Bundt cakes: pumpkin bread and a pear/Apple cardamom bread.

Guests brought pies, fall salad, fruit salad, corn muffins, rolls, and a relish tray.

I also made ahead of time some maple cranberry granola for guests to take home in jars!

We all had a wonderful time enjoying this bountiful season.

I’m already looking forward next year’s Autumn Potluck!

Hope you are having the loveliest autumn ever.

The Best Month

Well hello there! It has been a few weeks, but I wanted to drop in and post a few updates.

First off, it finally feels like fall, with a caveat. The mornings are crisp, the afternoons warm-to-hot. We’ll get another bout of this before the inevitable slide to cooler weather, even down here.

Autumn is my favorite season, and the temperature plays a role. But the glorious light, so rich and honeyed, and the turning of leaves and ripening of fall fruits enchant me. And we have so many celebrations in October alone!

Birthdays, pumpkin farm, autumn potluck, day trips, hikes, pursuing emptier beaches, and of course, Halloween. These are all packed into this gorgeous month. We get the last hurrah of warmer weather and the first hints of winter chill. It’s really perfect.

On the writing front, I’ve been busy with scheduling a conference, working on short story drafts, and gearing up for additional ideas to get through the fall and winter months.

Meanwhile, here’s to hot cider, costumed littles, apples and candy and pumpkins galore. Love you, October!

 

 

 

Welcome Autumn

Apples-AutumnWelcome, oh welcome, my most favorite season: Autumn!

Apples plump on the tree, leaves gild on the branches. The sea crashes on emptier shores, the north wind whistles and carries a chill. Glorious times. Hot cider, pumpkin bread, pears in everything, cinnamon and cardamom and nutmeg wafting through the home. Magic captured: amber afternoon light gleaming, purple shadows lengthening, a hint of piñon log fires somewhere in the distance.

The squirrels and birds dash hither and yon, snatching acorns and berries–hiding some, devouring others. Berries-Autumn

The nights will grow longer, the candles will be lit. There are trails to hike, candy to seek, sticky cakes to grab, honey-hued spirits to warm the heart. Sweaters and jeans and festivals and plans.

Welcome to the harvest, and the waning of the year!

The Hurly and the Burly

Hello! It’s been a little while since I’ve posted here. Hope you are all enjoying September!

Life has brimmed with activity here. School started, jolting us out of our heat-induced torpor. The novel’s edits were completed, and it’s getting polished up prior to publishing. I’ve made new connections and the kids have made new friends.

Meanwhile, quite suddenly, the heat wave ended. The shadows grew. Golden hour arrives earlier now, meaning my evening walks will soon be retired until Spring. I grow excited and energetic again, despite the early routines of school, appointments, meetings, and all the unexpected things as well.

Normally I feel a sense of joy as September advances toward my favorite season. But this year, I’ve watched many events and catastrophes unfold that clutch at my spirit. Harvey and Irma have snatched away lives and dreams, homes and memories. Wildfires choke the West. Floods ravage other parts of the world. It’s up to all of us to help each other out.

And it’s only too easy to get caught up in the hurly-burly, and forget how precious everything and everyone is.

So this autumn, I want to be sure I do my part and help where and when I can. I also need to set aside time for self care. We all do. Be good to yourselves!