I grew up in Florida. South Florida. Think muggy, humid thoughts, with a side of unrelentingly bright sunshine, and a smattering of red ants: did a vivid picture of my childhood just emerge in your mind? Winters might spill into the mid-fifties occasionally, at which point everyone shivers uncontrollably and pulls out their one, ill-fitted scarf to pair with a Disney themed sweatshirt. By April 17th (my birthday) pool parties (in our unheated pool, I might add) were a thing. The first time I saw snow, I was about ten and visiting my aunt and uncle in Rochester, New York. There’s a home video of us running around in the flurries, shrieking with joy and sliding around on the slippery pavement as our clothes get progressively wetter and you can hear the adults commenting, with Northern-born cynicism, on how they’re glad they’re not outside getting wet, too.
The first fall I truly experienced (for more than a few days, I mean) was after our move to North Carolina when I was fifteen. The autumns there were pretty, but still not legendary. Then I moved to Boston and saw leaf changing season in its true glory. The colors were so vivid, the air so crisp. Chicago, while not quite on par with the epic stuff of New England, still makes me, as Lucy Maud Montgomery so aptly puts it, “…so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.” There’s nothing like waking up with the windows open on that first day where the air feels like a deliciously cold friend you’ve almost forgotten about. The leaves haven’t quite turned here yet, but we managed to finally tackle apple picking season at its peak. Vincas, in true heroic form, even ate all the lightly, pesticide-covered, apple skin exterior for me, “so the baby wouldn’t be poisoned.” 😉 Now that’s fatherhood.
I wore my first maternity shirt and maternity leggings (thanks, Gap!) and felt like my bump was on true display. That same weekend, the baby started nudging me from inside for the first time and now I feel him (or her!) saying hi every few hours. We had out 20 week anatomy scan on Monday and the ultrasound tech expressed frustration with how the baby wouldn’t stop flipping and moving and hiding. Right at the end, though, baby decided to cooperate and gave all of us a big, full-on, friendly wave. So perfect. <3
This is our second time going to Jonamac Apple Orchard and Pumpkin Patch and we really enjoy this particular orchard (although last year there weren’t any apples left by the time we got there!). Hot donuts and steaming Apple Cider is always our first stop, before exploring the orchards and grounds. Afterwards, it’s become a tradition to go eat at Fatties, a Dekalb favorite, then come home and sit around the outdoor fireplace with drinks and cigars (for everyone but me, of course).
I’m not quite ready for winter yet, but oh fall, I love you so!