Keeping Up With the Jameses

Adventures in Modern Day Motherhood

Fall Break October 16, 2009

Filed under: 406,large familes,life — mommyoffive @ 10:42 pm
I’m not a big fan of autumn.  Oh, I love the smells (How can pumpkin pie smell so delightful and yet taste so…mushy?  It’s a good thing pumpkin chocolate chip cookies were invented.) and I can certainly enjoy the sight of autumn leaves, but those leaves fall all over the green grass that I’ve enjoyed all summer, and my garden freezes before I’ve managed to harvest of the tomatoes, my kids spend long school days away from me, and I can feel the cold winter creeping closer.  And I Do.  Not.  Like.  Cold.
And this October has reminded me of how absolutely horrible last October was.  Todd had just been laid off and I was so, so very sick.  (About that link – every time I read a light-weight description of HG I want to scream and throw something.  Words cannot adequately express how absolutely horrible it really is.)  It was an absolutely joyless time for myself and for my family, and I don’t want to be reminded of it.
So this year I have decided that I will embrace autumn.  We are currently smack dab in the middle of a fabulous fall break.  The children have a few days off of school and the weather is gorgeous!  I tried to find a poem to sum up my feelings and found that apparently most poets find autumn to be a depressing time, too.  Seriously, DO NOT google “autumn poetry” unless you are in a very good mood to begin with. Or you have a big bowl of ice cream nearby.  Preferably cookie dough.  Cookie dough ice cream, of course, although real cookie dough could work, too.
But I did manage to find one rebel author who seemed as determined as I am to find joy in autumn.  So here is that poem, interspersed with pictures of our fall break adventures:
Merry Autumn by Paul Laurence Dunbar
It’s all a farce,—these tales they tell
About the breezes sighing,
And moans astir o’er field and dell,
Because the year is dying.
PA150018(Hayride view of the pumpkin patch)
Such principles are most absurd,—
I care not who first taught ’em;
There’s nothing known to beast or bird
To make a solemn autumn.
PA150013(The Jakester chose a peanut shaped pumpkin.)
In solemn times, when grief holds sway
With countenance distressing,
You’ll note the more of black and gray
Will then be used in dressing.
PA150016(This is a terrible picture, but I would just like to point out the fact that Elisabeth now has enough hair to style.  She also has two very sharp teeth.)
Now purple tints are all around;
The sky is blue and mellow;
And e’en the grasses turn the ground
From modest green to yellow.
The seed burs all with laughter crack
On featherweed and jimson;
And leaves that should be dressed in black
Are all decked out in crimson.
A butterfly goes winging by;
A singing bird comes after;
And Nature, all from earth to sky,
Is bubbling o’er with laughter.
PA160075(It’s hard to tell, but the kids are playing tag in all the trees.)
The ripples wimple on the rills,
Like sparkling little lasses;
The sunlight runs along the hills,
And laughs among the grasses.
The earth is just so full of fun
It really can’t contain it;
And streams of mirth so freely run
The heavens seem to rain it.
PA160076(Jakob is running away after tagging me.)
Don’t talk to me of solemn days
In autumn’s time of splendor,
Because the sun shows fewer rays,
And these grow slant and slender.
PA160104(That’s war paint on his nose, made with charcoal from a camp fire.)
Why, it’s the climax of the year,—
The highest time of living!—
Till naturally its bursting cheer
Just melts into thanksgiving.
See, autumn really is beautiful.  (So is Nebo loop, by the way.  Go drive it – you know you wanna.)
And I’ll end this post with some words of wisdom that I overheard Todd giving to Jakob while I was baking some of the aforementioned cookies:  “Chocolate chips are NOT a weapon!”

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