Summer ebbs, a reality that generally sends me to a vat of candy corn. And caramel apples. And chocolate….
But this autumn, we are ticking away the days until we greet our second grandchild. What a counterpoint to any seasonal regrets. October 6. October 6. Opal. Like my Mom. Libra. Like my Mom.
I have punched my “want to do this summer” list until it looks pretty perforated. I spent a week in Denver with the sisters, ditched reality for two weeks and vegetated in New Buffalo, read a few books (not enough) and exercised 11 year old Mabel until the vet will not tsk tsk when she (if she) sees him next spring. She still looks at her 2 cups of kibble with that “what are you, nuts?” face, then devours it in 30 seconds. I am not kidding. Who knew? Dogs do not chew. We have recovered from our wedding, and hosted a 1 year birthday party for Henry. Those were BIG highlights, as was the shower that started the countdown to Kathryn and Mike’s baby’s arrival.
I have harvested enough basil to Caprese a chain of Olive Gardens and admitted defeat where tomatoes are concerned. Mine blister, rot and die on the vine. My flower gardens recovered from the drought just as I decided I hate my yard. I plan to get a good shovel and extract tons of overgrown, raggedy junk as the season ends. I will resume pruning this spring. It is time to get a little order in my forest.
We put up a new fence this year, and the abuse to my plant life was precipitous. Clematis lost its support system. Hydrangea stems snapped and the flowers were severed. My trumpet vines were sheared at the ground. The flowers I had planted were stomped upon. It was pretty grim.
You know what, though? Everything that was abused fought back. Tendrils of clematis are twining up the arbors, and hydrangea are struggling to rebloom on short sticks. I have done little but absentmindedly weave the vines into trellises. My bush roses look a bit like topiary, but their blooms cheer me from a distance. I am inspired by the determination of this stuff- I was not encouraging in the least. The will to live, to prosper and to grow in spite of me is wondrous. It actually inspires me.
It is time to get some mums, and concede that there will soon be insufficient light to nurture summer’s plant life. I have an attic full of Autumnal decor, and I suppose a motivated homeowner would be embracing a golden palatte. But I am going to linger in summertime until next weekend. Then I will lurch into Baby countdown, with a side order of pumpkin and mum motif. Steve will be traveling to LA to spend a few days with his Dad, and I like to have a “TaDa” moment to present to him when he returns. Wreath on the door? Cornucopia centerpiece? Pumpkin everything? Scarecrows and pumpkins? All of the above. And more. He will greet it with a bemused yawn, but I persist. I celebrate everything.
In the spirit of birth and rebirth, I have an old armoire in the garage- a piece of furniture that represented a luxury to Steve and me back when we first moved to Western Springs. It is rustic pine, and has endured some fitful updates as well as some dents and dings. I will be sanding and repainting it for the father and mother to be- or if they reject its clunky lines- I will find a corner for it. (Janet’s home for wayward furniture lives on…)
Steve shakes his head, because he knows the havoc I will create. That is why he has to go away! I need to locate the belt sander, buy supplies and get going! I have watched tutorials and know what kind of paint and glaze I will use. It will be red, rustic and strong. I will sand away a little of the paint so it looks old. Oh- and I am not going to paint the inside. There are limits to my self hatred.
Our cars will have to give up their spaces until it is finished. Steve will not allow this to extend more than a few days. I need this kind of back pressure to get anything accomplished. Yep- I am that pitiful.
I will add before and after pictures. Pray for me, for the garage, and for decent weather so I can do this. Otherwise, I will have to ban Steve from returning home, and his podcast will take root in LA. Come to think of it, he might like that…..No, he is as excited to be here when our family circle grows as I am. October 6. October 6. October 6.
Onward to Autumn, and Baby Dahl. The sweetest fruit of the season….