California

I know it is expected of me to write about the arrival of the California Dream.  I don’t think I can do that here.  I will break down in tears like I did the day she arrived.  She was taking her sweet time and it pushed me over the edge to a spell in the hospital chapel crying and praying.  Except now the tears would be bittersweet.  Not knowing when I will touch her again is something I refuse to think about.

Our son’s grandmothers had the same dilemma.  Our son was four weeks old when we left for California.  And we definitely didn’t know when we would see each other again.  Contact was a 15 minute long-distance phone call on Sunday afternoon and “snail mail”.  I still have the piles of letters my mother and I exchanged.

Things are different for our situation now.  Nevertheless, the need to catch a plane to get to her causes my heart to ache.

I am still fatigued from the trip. The all-day travel to then from California. The comfortable yet strange bed.  The time difference.  The anticipation. The anxiety. The excitement. The anguish.

I take photos of the foothills behind her house. In between my turn to hold her, I would go out and look at the hills again. The ever changing light makes them look different constantly.  They are like my lake with their continual cycle of lights and shadows playing across them.  I will try to go back to the lake tomorrow.  Time to start walking again. And I need to tell the ghosts who linger there in my memory about the little one I am loving for them and for me.

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Autumn…….Fall

Mama always called it “Fall”. Autumn is for a place that actually has a time of cooler weather with all the trees showing beautiful colored leaves shimmering in the sun before fluttering and dancing to the lawn.

Fall is for a place that has a time of cooler weather followed by hot weather again, followed by cooler weather followed by hot weather……….usually in the span of a week. This goes on until the rain starts.  Then, we can expect gray, damp, chilly days followed by the most beautiful shade of blue on the planet.  Texas Winter Sky Blue.  After a blue norther comes through signaling Winter’s arrival.

Before that time comes, we have Fall. Some of the trees give up their leaves, dry and brown.  He doesn’t like sweet gum trees because of the balls they dump on the ground.  I forgive them the balls littering the ground because of the blood red color the leaves will soon turn.   Sycamores make the biggest mess of all our trees.  But the yellow leaves shining against the blue sky are lovely.  When they have shed their golden treasure, the stark white of the ancient trunks gleams brightly.  An invasive species of tree I only know of as a tallow tree does have a wide arrange array of colors and a large bank of them makes a fine show.

This is the time of year when my loved ones start asking for a fresh batch of hot chocolate mix. I will blend up a round in a few days.  I keep promising to make marshmallows again.  Perhaps this year I will tackle the sticky challenge.  There is no comparison to store bought with these treats.

S’mores were never part of our camping trips when I was a kid. I first experienced them at the campfire of our best friend and his bride when their boys were tiny.  We have had them a few times through the years.  I have gathered some recipes on Pinterest for variations of the s’mores theme.  I want to practice some different things to see which to do for Hallowe’en weekend.  We have a couple of events that weekend and I want to bring a traditional fall flavor with a new twist.

I love pumpkins and Hallowe’en decorations and candy and costumes. Many childhood memories involve fire department, church or school sponsored Hallowe’en carnivals or Fall Festivals.

Then, of course, Fall means hunting and football. Or football and hunting.  Depending on the day of the week and the weather.   We don’t have a deer camp to go to this year, since changing clubs.  He is making me a fire pit under the trees in the yard.  I will be able to pretend I am off in the woods….and still have a flush toilet available!

Bright fall colors, slightly cooler weather, hunting, football, baking goodies (cool enough to turn on the oven), Hallowe’en events. Fall is here.  By the time it gets to be winter, the California Jewel will be arriving in San Dimas.  This is going to be one of my favorite Falls of all time!

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