Sunday, October 7, 2012

Corks and Pinecones

The weather here took a definite turn toward winter today, and I confess to a bit of a thrill as I lifted my fleece jacket from the hook by the door for the first time since April? Or maybe May. The blustery gray outside suggested an opportunity to build the first fire of the season, but it never quite delivered the requisite nip for such an event.

It did make me think back to years past, though. Early October is so variable here. My sister-in-law's birthday is the 2nd and so I considered some of the family dinners we have had for her. She usually prefers an autumn menu, and we have certainly had perfect cerulean blue sky days and cool evenings to compliment her requests, but there have also been years when I couldn't find a single leaf of color to adorn our table, and we've cranked the a/c to provide a little seasonal chill.

Who cares though? I like fall because it fits in perfectly with my homebody instincts. When the days turn short and cool, who isn't tempted to put on a big pot of soup and relax by the fire? Years ago, when our nephews were younger, fall was always a time we spent weekends together. We did fun pumpkin patch things, watched Scooby Doo, and roasted whatever we had on the fire.

And the fire? Well, to keep it burning bright we always made sure that we had plenty of kindling, like pine cones (that sap is amazing!) and wine corks. The boys were always more than happy to scavenge beneath the many Virginia Pines we have around here, stuffing bags with their flammable fruit. And I was equally happy to provide the corks. Believe me, it was never a hardship to open a bottle of wine.

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