Sunday, November 20, 2016

First Little Flurries and Signs of the Season

We're getting our first tastes of winter, as the Old Man sends out some feelers with wind, a splattering of sleet, and some drifting flakes.

It's about time. My mulberry trees still have their leaves, for heaven's sake. They do not lose their deep green cover until we have a killing frost, and that hasn't happened yet, at least on this hill. We've have frosts but they melt off quickly. Even last, when the temperatures dropped pretty low, it did not faze the mulberry trees. This is the first time I've actually seen the mulberries turn color, in the 40 years I've had the oldest tree. They're now turning a lovely orange-gold color.

We spent Friday afternoon outside, finishing up the fall cleanup. We put away planters, lawn chairs and ornaments, cleared up assorted clutter and now all that is left, when it warms up again, is for Larry to do the last weed-eating. It was so warm on Friday that we were sweating as we worked, but by midmorning Saturday that changed dramatically. We had our tea and coffee on the porch as usual, but it was soon blowing cold rain.

Another sign that it's time for colder weather is the arrival of my oldest son and his son for deer season. This is an annual ritual--they arrive, set up stands on their hunting places, sight in the rifles and get everything ready for Monday morning. Larry is also getting ready and I am hoping they are all successful as our freezer is currently almost out of venison, which is one of our main meats for the year.

We've been keeping the fireplace burning the last few days as the wind whistles and flings leaves into the air, as if in play. It's cozy and warm and just right for helping us transition into longer nights and colder days. I've been trying to get some housework caught up--much was neglected in September and October and now that the holidays are looming it's time to get to cleaning. Where does all the dust come from? It must be done, though, before the Christmas decorations come out. As my mother always said, you mustn't decorate dirt. Or alternatively, "You wouldn't want the baby Jesus to come to a dirty house, would you?" Good point.

We're also catching up on hanging stuff up. I had pictures and mirrors sitting invarious corners, waiting to catch Larry long enough to get them put up. He's hard to catch, let me tell you! He always has something better to do, or so he says. But after six months of waiting, I'm getting insistent and impatient so he's on it now. It's nice to do those little things that kinda freshen up the way the houe looks, isnt it?

And of course, another sign of the season is that I am humming and singing carols as I practice for the upcoming programs with my friend Jeff. We're adding some new ones this year: Nova Nova!, Beautiful Star of Bethlehem, Welcome Yule!, and a funny little thing called All Children Are on Christmas Eve. It's a challenge each year to find new songs to add to our repertoire, but I love it, especially delving into the history of each one. Like Jingle Bells, Did you know it was written for aThanksgiving service originally? If you think about the lyrics, there is no mention of Christmas whatsoever!

So, back to work I go. Today will be a combination of dusting and practicing carols. The crackling fire will provide the background music for both.


Copyright Susanna Holstein. All rights reserved. No Republication or Redistribution Allowed without attribution to Susanna Holstein.

1 comment:

Michelle said...

Fall is a busy season, as there is much to do to get ready for winter. We have had our wood stove going to the past few days. I do love its warmth.

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