I’m living a double life.
Trying to hold on to summer while quietly giving in to early-autumn rituals.
I’m still ‘swimming’ outdoors, but the heat also went on in the house last night.
I dusted off the outdoor furniture as if summer isn’t almost finished, but I also changed the tablecloth in the dining room to something autumnal.
I’m still watering the flower pots containing summer flowers — pansies, petunias, lilies and lobelia — but we also bought 3 large pots of chrysanthemum. (At ten bucks a pot, including tax, that’s a great deal.)
I salute the few late blooms of white hydrangea as if it’s early summer, while around me, most Annabelle hydrangea flowers have already turned green for autumn.
I’m still urging on our beets and zucchini in the garden, but getting ready to roast and preserve some just-picked tomatoes for autumn meals.
I’m also cheering the raised container bed of herbs my husband planted in the spring: rosemary, basil, thyme, parsley.
“Keep growing!” I tell them.
I eye the pots of amaryllis outside, knowing it’s almost time to shake off the soil and bring the bulbs indoors.
I see this patch of maple leaves changing colour, and pretend they’re a charming seasonal anomaly. Meanwhile, I narrow my eyes at a nearby tree whose leaves have already turned an unattractive dull-brown.
Perhaps most ridiculous of all, I am foolishly encouraging this sunflower seedling to keep going, telling it that blooming is not beyond the realm of possibility.
Yesterday, I listened to an old favourite song, “Turn, Turn, Turn”, (Pete Seeger) whose lyrics were excerpted from the biblical book of Ecclesiastes (“To Everything there is a season”).
But there are limits to these accommodations of the change in seasons. For example, I have resolutely not bought any spring bulbs, though I know my husband will likely go out and get some. (I figure he has enough garden work to do at this time, with little help from me.)
Yesterday, I glimpsed a Christmas decoration show on television. For a few moments I stared in bewilderment, then turned off the TV.
To everything there is a season. But even as I creep and lurch my way into fall, it’s way too early for Christmas!
38 thoughts on “To Everything, A Season – or Two”
Good points and pictures! Yes, fall has always felt like such a bittersweet season, to me, ever since I can remember from childhood. Definitely too early to hear about Christmas; I agree!
It is bittersweet, Becky, because it is so colourful, and the smells and sights are gorgeous, yet we know it brings winter in its wake.
Your post brings back memories of living up north. I actually looked forward to Fall with the cooler weather and changing leaves. Sometimes I miss the seasons. The biggest change here is shorter days, but we still have heat and I will have some kind of flowers all winter, which make the lack of seasons easier to take.
I like the idea of having some kind of flowers all winter. I miss my garden in the cold months here. I guess it’s the sense of discovery, and being able to walk around and linger in the sights and sounds of nature.
I agree. Fall is my favorite season. I am not willing to by-pass it to get to Christmas.
Well said, Karen. Autumn is my favourite season too!
You bet it’s too early for Christmas decorations—although I must admit I shop for presents year round. And, yes, let’s enjoy this in between season, lovely in its own right.
In more agile days, I did the same! It’s far saner.
I actually enjoy autumn – and yes, i like the brown /rusted color of the leaves, the empty branches amidst the evergreens. I like the smell too, crisp, somewhat moldy. but i agree, Christmas is way far ahead… or not.
I love the autumn. What could be more glorious? But – perversely — I want to linger in the late summer, and to enjoy some summery things for a bit longer.
haha, you’re reminding me of a cat.
Turn, turn, turn is a great way to describe fall Cynthia. As with you, fall tends to mix me up, I’m grateful for the turning and hesitant to let go of summer. Maybe we can enjoy the diversity! 🙂
That’s the spirit! I’m enjoying it too.
I agree it’s too early for Christmas (!) but you’ve really captured the ambiguity of this part of the year Cynthia, when we never know if it will be warm or cold, never know what to wear for the best, never know whether the laundry should go out on the line (mine is as we speak and I don’t think the rain is going to come!)….
Well said, Andrea. You hit the nail on the proverbial head!
It is that season, that odd time of duality – I’m still watering the summer flowers, but thinking of going out to get mums this weekend. I just switched my home decor and put away silk flowers and such, replaced by fall leaves and catkins. Perhaps we can look at it as having the best of both worlds. 🙂
This time of year kind of catches us between seasons. I composted a couple of containers that weren’t doing well, but couldn’t bring myself to get rid of the rest. I saw a maple tree turning orange today when I was doing errands. With regard to Christmas starting in September, it just totally turns me off.
I’ve already bought my first Christmas present ☺️. How long does your autumn last? I have thought about putting the heating on but will resist for another month. After the unusually high heat we had this summer, it does feel particularly chilly now, though!
I’ve always liked that song too, but it’s too early for turning.
I always think of the year I washed the car wearing a T shirt on my daughter’s birthday, which is January 7th. It could happen again!
Great reflections on the changing seasons Cynthia. I see fall as a time of letting go as we begin the inward journey of winter. ☀️🌺
I love Fall but there are those days between the end of August and the beginning of October when we are betwixt and between. I watch the changes and revel in the colours and see the branches slowly getting naked and sere. Yet, there is also the anticipation of the winter wonderland and looking forward to the budding in Spring. Nature is wonderful and you capture the mood so very well.
Oh gosh, you can say that again! A local store has had their Christmas decorations and trees for sale since the beginning of August. Soon our hummingbirds will be migrating…it will be lonely without them. Beautiful photo, Cynthia!
Very beautifully written Cynthia! I flowed along as If I was there. Going in and out among the pictures of my own home…beautiful and warm…
Lovely post. I’m pleased you are swimming
I’ve seen Roger McGuinn, of The Byrds, perform a couple times and he always does Pete Seeger’s “Turn, Turn, Turn”–I love it and I love this time of year, kind of dipping our toes in two seasons at once. Hot days and shorts, with cool nights and camp fires . . . YES!
I applaud your little sunflower for its determination to explore its potential, despite the diminishing days of summer. I abhor the arrival of Christmas on TV or in stores. I am glad that you are doing your bit to help keep the seasons turning in a timely and graceful order.
Our fall won’t be here for weeks and weeks as summer pushes into September. You enjoy the lovely world you still have and encourage that sunflower! It is way too soon to think about Christmas!
I’m not ready yet, either, but I think that’s what fall is for! to get us in the right place to accept winter. I’ve noticed just a few leaves–harbingers–and have ignored them. Soon I suppose that won’t be possible, but then I’ll be ready to enjoy fall’s beauty. it’s hard to let go of all that burgeoning life, isn’t it? I’m glad yo save your plants year to year!
🦋 This is beautiful.
Great blog too.
You have such a beautiful garden and a green thumb, Cynthia! So true that it’s not time for Christmas, or Halloween either as far as I’m concerned!
Autumn, with all its weather quirks and changes, is still my favorite time of year. 🙂 Our heat is on at times now, too. The transition into the next season came fairly quickly this year.
I am glad to hear you are swimming, Cynthia. Enjoy these beautiful days!
Autumn is my favourite too. I love the early to mid Autumn, but the late part here feels just like winter, especially in snow storms! I don’t love it then. I guess I’m a fair-weather friend to Autumn.
Very little snow here where I am, but I can look up and see snow-capped mountains. That’s how I like my snow. 🙂
Oh it is way too early to be thinking of Christmas 🙂 Lovely post Cynthia. Fall is my favourite season, I just love the colours. Those beetroot and herbs look super happy .. how good is homegrown veg!
The supermarkets have had their Christmas chocolates and biscuits on display since the end of August! Much too early! I love summer and autumn and I quite like winter, though the endless, dreary, cold, damp days do get on my nerves. This year we have had warmth by day for longer than usual. The nights have been chilly and next Monday a frost is forecast though I doubt whether we’ll put our heating on until the beginning of November. I was out this evening watering the garden by moonlight – it is still very dry here.
I hear you, sister. Way too early. But frost! That’s a bit too early too, no?
Yes! Way too early! I am hoping it will be a short-lived grass frost and nothing too serious. The forecasters may change their minds before Monday!