Sunday, September 17, 2023

Embrace Something New

"Autumn shows us how
beautiful it is to let things go."

I love this time of year—it makes me feel spirited and creative and alive. There really is something in September's atmosphere. Along with the deep blue skies, warm but not croaking hot days, the smell of harvest in the air, long shadows, and leaves dancing on the crisp breezes, something about it all makes me feel hopeful about life. And it comes with a readiness to begin again, which perhaps stems from childhood school days when a new school year created that frisson of new beginnings. New pencils, new notebooks, and days still new with no mistakes in them.

So... let's fling off the remains of the old season. Believe something good is about to happen. Something that will jostle and startle our wonderment at being alive. And give our minds new patterns to play with and get us out of the rut.

Today I'm inviting us—you and me—to engage in the simple pleasure of embracing something new. Putting aside some of the usual routines and choices, and without thinking about it too much, doing something a little different, even if it's just for the day.

Don't study the menu when you go out for lunch. Close your eyes and point to a spot on the page. Order it, even if you've never tried it before. And if it isn't quite to your taste, well, that's okay, isn't it? You've pushed the boundary, explored a little, maybe even created the start of a new blog post.

This morning choose something other than your favourite mug, blouse, or pair of earrings. Select something you haven't used or tried for a while. See with fresh eyes. Do you still like it? Has your soul outgrown it?

Don't take the same route on your walk or trip to the grocery store. Take some other leafy street and crunch through a pile of dried leaves.

Don't listen to the usual radio or streaming service. Choose a listening style not your usual taste. Appreciate it, even if it's for just a few minutes.

Don't call your mom, sister, best friend to chat about the same old things. Introduce something new to chat about. Ask what she's reading, what she remembers about autumn days in her girlhood, what made her feel happy today.

Don't sit in your favorite chair when reading or watching television. Pick a spot elsewhere in the room. Look around from that vantage point. Maybe you'll see something that should be fixed, rearranged, or tossed. Or you'll see something lovely you've not noticed before. A couple of quarters, perhaps?

With it being just days before Autumn's Equinox, will you embrace something new to celebrate the new season? Will you share something with us?

"I can be a light in darkness;
I can be a patch of blue sky;
I can be the pink hydrangea
alive on a cool September day."

Wishing you a beautiful week ahead.

Photo credit:
Top Image by Brigitte Werner from Pixabay

Saturday, September 02, 2023

Friday Five on Saturday: Little Joys

"September is dressing herself in showy dahlias
and splendid marigolds and starry zinnias."

It's the little things giving me joy this week. These heady dahlias were photographed last autumn at the St Albert Botanic Park. Their late summer display still makes my heart go zing.

How can it be September already? I love this gorgeous month of the year so I'm not sorry it's arrived. As I begin to put away the summer things, I want to browse my shelves for books that suit the season and start shifting our meals of summer fare to more hearty and warm dishes. Some folks 'sniff' at all the pumpkin spice items available this time of year. Me, I'm eager for that first autumn latte. Which could even be this afternoon. I have always loved the pumpkin spice of pies, so why not add it to muffins, waffles, and beverages.

I started this post on Friday so please consider it a Friday Five on Saturday. Happy Weekend!

One - Sunsets and long shadows 

September's sunsets and long shadows are usually a favourite delight at this time of year. But some days the sun is hidden in smoky skies—some days there are no shadows. And when the sun shines, it's amber orange. Still, trees are turning, and tiny piles of leaves gather along street curbs, enough to scrape one's toes into and hear a crunch. I've haunted the shops looking at new notebooks and pencils; let me just say I had great restraint from buying more, remembering a small pile of notebooks I bought last autumn still waiting to be pressed into service.

Two - Gently used book finds

Had the urge to pop into the thrift store for a quick look around the book section. In about five minutes, maybe ten, I had five books in hand—buy four and get the fifth free. Then I had a book to drop off at the library, and after a fast glance at their sale rack, the two Dorothy Gilman Mrs. Pollifax mysteries were added to the pile.

Driving home with my treasures, I giggled to myself, thinking I'm like a squirrel, stashing provender for winter. Food for the mind is as necessary as food for the stomach. There's a gleefulness to seeing my shelves bulge with new reading possibilities. I don't think of myself as a book hoarder, though someone else around here might think they should take my temperature. Ha!

Three - Bees in the Joe Pye Weed

The other morning I was standing by this 10-foot king of a plant called a weed—it's a gorgeous weed— watching the bees in the blossoms. I don't hear their hum as well as I used to, but the sight of them continues to give me a thrill. Alas, when I went to take photos this morning, every last hummer had gone elsewhere. So we're imagining their presence today.

Four - A stubby 8B pencil and a greeting card box

Why does this 8B sketching pencil give me joy? I don't know exactly, except I love holding it in my hand when I'm reading. In case I need to gently underline or mark a passage. It needs to be short and stubby, well-used. I've laid the pencil on an old greeting card box, which gives you an idea of its cute short stubbiness. That box once housed a lovely set of greeting cards I ordered years ago from Victoria magazine. They were paired with translucent creamy velum envelopes. I never quite got over how exquisite they were - a real joy to write in and send out.

Five - Repurposing a scented soap box 

I found a beautiful box of scented soap which smells like 'the scent of a garden in bloom'. When I set the bar out in our bathroom, I could smell it on the air for days. I was loathe to discard the box; not only was it pretty, it smelled good even empty. So, I cut it up into tiny bookmarks. They are now tucked inside books I'm reading, and when I open the pages I still get that tiny whiff.

"But the days grow short when
you reach September."

Before I sign off, I wanted to mention that I won't be around for the next week or two. We're doing some home reno projects which means our house will be a little upside down. I probably won't get to a blog post. So I'll take this time to wish you a beautiful month ahead. I hope it's filled with tiny pleasures and a few big ones too. Stay safe, be well.

Wishing you a beautiful day,

Photo credits:
All photos are mine, except the
Trees at Sunset by Mabel Amber from Pixabay