Sunday, October 19, 2008

Remnants of an October Afternoon

I have to say the last two weeks of October are probably my favorite time of year. Not just because I get to have a birthday, then, either. I was born on a hot blustery day in southern California where autumn colors were rare. How much I enjoy the gift of these changing seasons!
Today we went to church, had lunch, put the babies down for their naps, and thus begun a blissful afternoon. I walked out to the pasture to see if Steadfast needed a hand with the new fence, or the new "bitty barn" (who's inhabitants will arrive in time for my birthday next weekend), and he said, no, he was just puttering around enjoying his afternoon at home after three weeks of travels.
And so I walked back, with an indignant Toast at my feet. We humans can be such a handful to keep track of, you know. And halfway through the path in the woods I was greeted by Elizabeth toting a phone that had my dear mom on the other end. I sat on the bench on the lawn (which affords the view above) and had a short chat with my mom & dad who were birthday shopping for Fanny.
After I hung up, I sat for a bit and enjoyed the view. Toast and Croissant lazing about in the sun on the front steps. The chickens scratching through the fallen leaves. The scent of smoke wafting from somewhere distant, carrying a whiff of hot dogs with it.
I went into the house to start our daily bread, set a pot of coffee, and grab one of my favorite authors, Gladys Taber, to return to the bench outside. I do love Mrs Taber's work, who penned these words in 1937, in The Book of Stillmeadow:
"The special gift of frosty gold days comes now; time to lay down the household tasks and shut the door on routine. For every October, when I see the trees over the meadow, I think, "I shall not look upon her like again." And every October is different, strange with new beauty."
And these:
"I wonder how much we ever really enjoy anything we have put no personal effort into. If we wove cloth, for instance, we should remember the long bright days of spinning, and the air and sun; and the sound of the wheel would all be in it, the songs we sang, the food we ate that time, what everybody said, how the puppy ran away with the wool. A whole warp and woof of memory would be there forever. But now a piece of cloth means only how tired my feet were and how hard it was to get waited on in the store."
And there's a hysterical story about two grown women chasing a baby pig for 40 minutes flying around a barn like windmills. If you have this book at your library, I highly recommend it. Even better, find a copy for your own to keep. It's written month by month about the adventures in a seventeenth-century Connecticut farmhouse in the 1930s. I love to look up the month I'm in when I'm out on the garden bench with a cup of coffee or glass of iced tea. :)


Anonymous said...

I was telling the girls in my Bible study about you and how cute your blog is! About you having 7 girls and that you use the name Steadfast and Hindsfeet from the book Hinds feet in High Places!! We all love that book and are going to do a study on it again starting this week! Just think you are very clever to use it in your blog! I like it!
It looks very peaceful in this last photo! Nice colors too!

Jen said...

Beautiful post! Thank you!

heartathome said...

Oh, that book sounds marvelous! And so begins the hunt... Thanks for sharing, Hinds! You have such a lovely blog. I always enjoy my visits here:)

Anonymous said...

I have an October birthday. I love this time of year and how beautiful the world is painted in this season.

I love Spring the most, probably because there is such hope in the newness of it all. The greens are splendid AND for those of us that live in cold winter climates, it is so refreshing to feel the warm Spring breezes as we thaw out. Autumn however, is so wonderful after the Summer's heat. It is a close contest within me! ;)