This is part of an exercise where I use my editorial calendar to make a plan and then schedule out 2- 3 posts. The following is POST THREE. The following link are my previous scheduled post. Enjoy!
The Autumn Girl 🍂
The crisp cool air fell heavily over the damp ground like a long-awaited friend. She’s back, I said from under the thickness of my down blanket. My bones were achy, and my nose was cold. Yes… she’s back. I peeked my head out and felt the stillness in the air, quiet for a moment. I wanted to be sure. Was it her?
The wind began to blow outside. The branches on the trees trapped on my windows as if to let me know she was on her way. Then I heard it, the gentle and comforting rhythm of raindrops on the tin roof, her own welcoming induction. Yes, she is back.
I unwrapped myself from the warmth of my bed only to rewrap myself in a new layer of softness that I found in an oversized sweater and the warmest pair of fuzzy gray slippers. I walked over to my large window to see, indeed the changes were here. The sky was now a blanket of gray and white fluffy smudges across the sky, outlined with bright foliage of yellow, orange, and deep purples, reds, and browns. The whirls and rattling of dried leaves joined the symphony of sounds that filled the air.
The floorboards creaked under my steps as I made my way to the kettle to make my morning tea. But due to the arrival of my guest, I decided on something special to welcome her home. A hot cider instead to warm my bones. The aroma of apples and cinnamon danced around my kitchen as I began to prepare this Autumn drink in honor of her return. The kettle is ready on the stove, my favorite mug waiting with anticipation for a hot pour, while the sound of autumn fills the atmosphere.
Time to start a fire, grab that novel I haven’t made the time to read, and my favorite woolly throw blanket. Yes, almost all the necessities to greet her back. How long has it been? How much I’ve missed her and the way she colors the wind, the way she designs the night with candlelight. My favorite time is here.
The fire now crackling provides evocative scents cascading throughout my small wooden and stone home. I light a few fragrant candles that add not only the smell of spice and pumpkin but also sandalwood and earth. They flicker and sparkle in the background creating the ambiance I have been craving.
The kettle whistles and steam shoots out its spout. It’s time to pour together my autumn mixture. In anticipation, I slowly stir in the steaming hot water and a bit of hot foamy cream on top, with a sprinkle of nutmeg to complete my mug’s delight. This is more than comforting, it’s an aroma that takes me to a place of protection, serenity, and peace in my soul. If only I could live in the moment forever.
Now, I prepare for rest, reverence, and renewal. It’s that time to be blessed by the fruits of our labor, to enjoy and reflect on the lessons we have faced; as we humbly look back with grateful hearts for the blessings of each season we have walked through in faith.
With my warm mug in my hand whiffing the smells of apple and cinnamon behind me, I gather my harvest collections and nestle myself into my most cozy armchair, next to the fireplace. I lay back and take in the scenery surrounding me, the sounds of the wind, the gentle rustling of the leaves, and the occasional pitter-pat of the rain on the roof. I am engulfed by her now.
I grab a crisp new book and crack open the fresh pages, so untouched and pure. I can’t wait to wear down the corners with love and admiration, to make a new book, old like leather in my hands. For a few hours, I get lost in the pages. A story of love and loss, of hope and survival. A story I know all too well myself. It’s getting close now I thought… she’s near.
Up out of my chair and back into the kitchen I go. How inviting it is that the heaviness of those autumn scents still lingers. The crockpot beckons! From my harvest of fresh herbs, butternut squash, chicken, and apples, I began to chop and dice away. It won’t be long now before this home is overwhelmed with the spicy and hearty smells of sage and ginger, along with the delicate and sweet scents of maple and apples. An Apple Butternut Chicken Stew to warm this empty belly this evening I will look forward to savoring. I am sure she will be pleased.
Time to enter her world. I’m awaiting her full arrival. My plaid flannel adds the layer of warmth and comfort that I need as I feel her whirl through my hair and steal my very breath. The air is colder now, there’s an obvious drop in temperature that forces me to pull my layer around me tightly. My pooch and I brace the chill in the air as a gust of her breath rips through trees and makes the vibrant leaves spin wildly all around us putting on a show. Only small traces of sunlight now sparkle and flash through the tree like a welcoming committee all full of excitement knowing what’s to come.
Some trees have gone completely bare now. Their bones were fully exposed showing their full skeleton, their leafy covering dried and broken lining the damp streets. This is such a peaceful time to appreciate life, the afterlife, and what will be. Life and death. At the end of everything, the closing of a time is so very apparent everywhere I look. I acknowledge and treasure the value of life, what was and what will be. It’s a beautiful and amazing cycle I get to witness.
The wind whips behind me biting at my ankles as I make my way through the front door of my home. A trail of leaves follow me and my fleecy friend threw the doorway. We are now warm in the security of these walls, safe and protective from the power of her wind and rain but oh, how it thrills me to be consumed by her in that way, in her presents overtaking me.
The warm and comforting smells of the crockpot are in full motion. The aroma is rich and sweet greeting us back home. As I check on my meal, make another hot apple cider, and find my way back to that faithful armchair the time seems to pass by all too fast but so slow at the same time, day turns to dusk quickly. I find myself living another life in that novel while snuggling closely with my small companion. I somehow get immersed in this bit of time that has flown by all too fast, yet I feel as if time stopped in those pages I absorbed myself in. Twilight has now fallen upon us. Soon I will see her.
I scooped myself a hefty bowl of stew and passed a small bit to my little shadow on four legs. How the flavorful dish, took over my palette. My stomach was now full and warm, and I could feel sleepiness come over me. Still, I have to wait… I needed to see her.
I could already see the lighting of candles in my neighbor’s windows as they bestowal a greeting to her. Carefully, I made my way to each window seal where a single white candle stick waited to be called upon to honor her. A flame to celebrate her, to thank her, and guide her on her way.
The only light in my home was the small glow from my fireplace and the flickering light from 4 candle sticks that kiss the glass of my window. Until there she is.
Until I see her looking back at me.
Some call her Hunter’s Moon, The Lenten Moon, Corn Moon, or even The Child Moon. But I know her as the Harvest Moon, The Red Moon, and the September equinox. We now reap what we’ve sowed. There she is, in all her glory. She is full and bright, lighting up the night, to remind us we are full, and complete when we embrace this life we have been called to live. Living a life of gratefulness, thanksgiving, and humbling living as part of the Earth.
I close my eye and say a prayer for this season that has passed. This sweet phase of life is precious. It’s gone in a blink of an eye. The business, the work, the struggle. It all comes down to this time of gathering, and harvesting. We express gratitude and love. We stop and be still. How I marvel at her presents and all that it represents.
With astonishment, I gaze at her beauty. No street lights or electricity is needed, she is powerful enough and gives us all the light we need. She’s so close I swear I could touch her. A copper coin in the sky, your light pierces through this darkness and transforms the night and my soul. Your all-in-compassing spirit is hovering over us all, covering us with graciousness and moving us to a place and time of contentment.
Oh, the joy. Be still my heart. Harmonious in your great and magnificent splendor! I am so small compared to your greatness. Now, off to bed, you tuck me in, back under those inviting down blankets, my pup curled in the crease of my legs. Peace falls over me.
She hums a twilight autumn lullaby, sending me off to sleep. The now light whispers of the wind and leaves start to fade away into a dream. The sounds of the owl and crickets serenade me as drift into dreamland. Her light shines through my window as my personal nightlight as she watches over me. I know that when I awake she will be gone. But oh, how it all was worth it. What an amazing time we had together. I will anticipate our next visit.
- All images are credited to Pinterest and can be found on my site. I did not take the pictures myself.