As a child, I was fortunate enough to live in an area that saw four definite seasons. In winter, I knew there would be snow, sledding, ice skating, school closings, hot chocolate, s’mores, and fires in the fireplace. Spring brought warmer days, kite flying, trees, once bare, now with beautiful green leaves, flowers blooming, butterflies, and song birds. Summer meant no school, hot days, heat lightning and thunderstorms, vacation travels, swimming, fireflies, and fireworks. And then came FALL…
Yes, all the seasons have something to like, but fall is special. Now living at the coast, I experience summer for more than six months of the year with a trick day or two thrown in to fool you into believing that summer is over. But, more than the weather, autumn holds so many wonderful gifts for adults and children alike.
If you are looking for fun things to include your grandchildren in here are a few suggestions:
Find a pick-your-own apple orchard and go apple picking. Take them home and help the children make apple sauce, pies, caramel apples, or whatever suits your fancy.
Take them to a pumpkin patch. I realize Halloween has passed, so this may be something to keep in mind for next year. However, buying a pumpkin will come in very handy at Thanksgiving – suggestion to follow later in this article.
Apple cider is one of my favorite drinks in the fall. Find recipes for apple cider doughnuts or anything that uses the cider. If your grands are like mine, they love to add, mix, make, and bake any time.
Corn mazes, fall festivals, trips to the mountains or the zoo are wonderful when the weather is cool and the air is crisp.
This month includes one of the best holidays of the year – Thanksgiving. We can all find things to be thankful for. No matter what is going on in our lives, we are blessed with family, a roof over our heads, and food to eat. Whether you are with family or friends, last year, I read about a wonderful use of a pumpkin for the table’s centerpiece. Ask everyone to tell you what they are thankful for. It can be anything other than the obvious family, friends, etc. Those you will already have written on the pumpkin. Using a Sharpie, start at the top of the pumpkin and write around it in a circle. After each one, credit the person whose thought it was. Be prepared for answers like toys, video games, etc., and that is fine. You can do this in advance – just get in touch with everyone you want to include. It will be a wonderful surprise and everyone will love reading all the items that made the list.
Even if you are not hosting the dinner, take the pumpkin with you. Your host will find a place for it. Make sure to take a picture of it to send to those not able to be there.
By the time you read this, the leaves will have changed to their beautiful shades of reds, yellows, and oranges and will begin to turn brown and fall off, leaving the trees bare. I love to take a hike, hear the leaves crunch and twigs snap under my feet, smell the smoke from chimneys, breathe in the cool air, and count my blessings for all I have. I hope this time of year finds you counting yours, too.