Sunday, 22 September 2019

Welcoming in the Autumn

I do so love this time of year, it's not so hot so as to leave you sweaty and puffing and yet there isn't quite the chill in the air to force you to grab for a coat and woolly scarf. But more so than enjoying the pleasure of going out in a cardigan is the beautiful autumn light which, on a sunny day gives you that warm feeling inside as it lights up the cobwebs and brings a glow to rose hips and elderberries.  It makes everything look warm and like a memory, like a photograph that you wish you could hold in your hand and keep forever.

We have been fully embracing the season, soaking in the fading rays of sun with beautiful Autumnal walks, seasonal food and Autumn crafts.  The river and the woods have been calling us and we've been collecting seeds and berries, opening and closing locks, pushing swing bridges, riding canal boats, picking apples and throwing sticks to knock pears from the tree! And we still have conkers and sweet chestnuts, harvest festival and Michaelmas to come.  It's bittersweet though because I know it will all too soon come to an end and we will be plunged into the depths of winter where sleet and wind will make us far more hesitant to leave the house for fresh air and exercise.  I am sure one day I will be able to enjoy cosy afternoons by the fire enjoying a puzzle with one of my sons.  But right now charging about, wrestling and generally causing mayhem with sword sticks and guns is the order of the day, sedate and genteel afternoons with three wild boys are a thing of a fantasy of my own making at the moment!

Today we enjoyed a delicious ploughman's lunch with sourdough bread purchased from Borough Market, some delicious vegan cheddar-onion cheese, Autumn chutney made by my mother-in-law and a crisp apple from our own tree.  We accompanied this with a side salad including lettuce from out garden and we really felt like we were enjoying the fruits of our labour!

So yes, we are enjoying this season of mist and mellow fruitfulness, but life goes on with the challenges of trying to raise 3 boys to become good, kind, Godly men and as I watch the leaves of the trees quickly change from green to yellow and brown before my eyes I am reminded of how quickly this season of life with little children passes. And just as I savour the sharp tang of cheese and chutney, the sweet, crispness of the apple and the delightful pleasure of being able to go out in just a cardigan, I am trying my best to savour the moments of pleasure with the little ones. Their playful imagination, their elaborate fantasy role plays, their den building and their sweet sleeping faces.  I know these things won't last forever (well maybe the sweet sleeping faces) and I can feel the time slipping away, I just want to savour it all.  Bittersweet. Autumn and childhood, just let me inhale, touch, savour and remember it all.  I'll see the Autumn again, but once these little ones are grown and fly the nest I will just have the memories and the photographs left, so I pray, let me remember and let me make the most of it.

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