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Thursday, October 20, 2016

FALL-ing for Fall

Every season has its joy and something lovely to share with us, but I have always been a spring person. Warming temperatures mean I can turn down the heat or stop wearing sweaters inside. Trees and shrubs respond to the warmth with new leaves, coating the branches recently dormant and barren in new green. Soon the budding flowers follow. By April, our home here in northern California is surrounded in beauty, everything budding, blossoming, and burgeoning with new life. The city is a kaleidoscope of color.

Animals get into the act, renewing their species with a new, young generation. The pastures around our city fill with new calves, frolicking lambs, and adorable kids. (In this case, I really mean baby goats.) I love everything about spring.

A friend recently rhapsodized in a similar way about the beauties of autumn: the color in the changing leaves, the cooling of scorching summer days (we get them here), the reopening of schools that get the kids off the streets in the middle of the day. Although I could see her points, I still felt that, for me, the autumn season can never compete with spring.

Still, as the cooling temperatures signal the change of seasons, I am learning to fall for fall. All the many fruit trees and crop fields that blossomed in the spring are now filled with ripening fruits and vegetables and the markets with gorgeous produce. Trees here are not yet turning, but when they do, they become a riot of blazing color. There's also the benefit of cutting off the air conditioner and expecting lower energy bills. And I have to admit it's nice to run an errand without worrying about running down school kids.

Autumn brings anticipation: of the approaching holidays, of snow in the Sierra foothills, of crackling logs and snuggling up with a good book in front of the fire or sharing the same space with my sweetheart or a cuddly grandchild. It heralds the arrival of the rainy season and water our state needs badly.It brings the joy of discovering new, delicious recipes for salsa, jams, and jellies and the first mug of spiced cider this year.

I expect I will always be a fan of spring and consider it my favorite season, but I'm learning to love the autumn. It comes in at a close second.

Susan Aylworth is the author of 14 novels, all available as e-books. She loves her northern California home which she shares with her husband of 46 years and the two spoiled cats they serve. When she can't be with her seven children, seven great kids-in-law, and 25 grandbabies, she loves hanging with her fictional offspring, the children of her mind. She also loves hearing from readers. Visit her website at or find her @SusanAylworth, at, or on Pinterest.


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