11/11/08

Signs of the season


QQ preparing for a brisk morning walk, with the frost still on the air. We haven't had snow yet, but there were six inches on the plains yesterday. I have to admit, I'm ready. It has been a long, lovely summer and fall, full of more warm weather than one could ask. Now, I'm ready for the season.

Maybe I was feeling a little excited about QQ's first Christmas...about snow and sleighbells and decking the Christmas tree...hence the outfit and the reindeer bell around her neck. Normally, I'm one who believes it's a crime for the merchandisers to start pitching Christmas before Thanksgiving is even a gleam in grandma's eye...but this year...I just can't help myself. I'm getting excited. Who doesn't love their Christmas memories from early childhood? I still drag them out and treasure them like a loveworn teddy every year....the fragrant spruce set in a crockpot full of white river stones, the ornaments my parents had collected from all over the world, my grandmother's glass doves... long, snowbound walks into town, fur around my face, each mittened hand enclosed in one of my parent's gloved hands....the smell of my mother's citrus breads baking, warming the house with fragrant steam, and the lemon icing she would make by hand and drizzle like a light frost over the top of the warm loaves...my father's stiff buckskin work gloves, his quilted red vest with the cross on the back from his days on the ski patrol, and the way he used to muscle the gear shift, keeping the car on the icy, steep Catskill Mountain roads...

QQ's will be different. I wonder how they will go? Different sights, different sounds, different aromas...though the Christmas music on NPR will remain the same...Vivaldi and Strauss, dances from the Nutcracker, and of course Handel's peerless Messiah, which my mother used to sing with the chorus every holiday season in her lovely soprano.

To the classical Christmas music, M. and I have added our tradition of sappy, oldschool holiday tunes from Dean Martin and Bing Crosby. I mean, how can you not? Why wade in the season when you can wallow in it?

Years past, just the two of us in Vail, we would turn down the lights, open a bottle of wine, put on a Brat Pack Christmas album and make a night of decorating the tree, then lie underneath it with all the faerie lights ablaze, watch "How The Grinch Stole Christmas", and fall asleep on the couch. This year will be a bit different, but, dare I say, even more magical. Yup, I'm looking forward to it.

She kind of likes the bell.

Setting out in her fleece bunting...for once, actually happy about a morning walk! It isn't every day I can get her to submit to a stroll in the a.m..

This year, I am particularly in love with berries. How is it that I never noticed them before? Purple and obsidian and every shade of red from deep pink to flame. One beautiful slate-grey Victorian a few blocks down from us has a tree I've particularly admired throughout the fall, as its leaves caught fire, and fell. Now, there is nothing but the round, frosted, festive red fruits clustered on the branches. As we walked by, the owner was working on his lawn. I asked about the tree. He said it's called a Prairie Fire crabapple, and that they were told it would attract songbirds. Well, maybe next year, if I can find one.....



I have been a fan of grasses ever since moving down here from the mountains. They are, after all, particularly suited to the high plains. In autumn, against the grey of the landscape, they take on a particular ephemeral lightness.


How is it that I breezed through so much of my life without appreciating the subtleties of fall and winter? The delicate colors and shifting shades? No matter. I'll spend time appreciating it now.

Back home, inspecting her shadow while mommy unpacks the stroller.

9 comments:

Vivian M said...

Flynn is going to love snow!!!!

I want pictures of her first snowman, snowball, or taste of snow!

So, I'm needy. Indulge me!

Stefanie said...

The pictures of the signs of fall are lovely, but I can't get over how stinkin' cute she looks in that HAT!!

Cavatica said...

She makes that hat perfect! Wonderful, wonderful pics.

Yoli said...

The hat!!! Oh she is a natural for hats, they look adorable on her!!!


I so wish I would be experiencing fall and snow. It is always summer here. The changing of the seasons is brought about the store fronts. I am excited about decorating, it is as close to the season as we will experience. You just wait girl! The holidays take on a special meaning with the little ones around. Everything takes on a glow again.

You Know Where You Are With said...

I am ready for the season, too, although snow is a thing of our past, I'm afraid. But I'm decorating for the holidays WAY more than last year and watching Lulu's eyes go all big at it!

Snowflowers Mum said...

I didn't think another child could look as cute as Piper in that coat, but boy Flynn takes the cake...She wears it well.

I think she is embracing her 'inner elf'...clearly her Mommy is!

Maia said...

Ooooh, I looooved those little boots. It's great to see them being put to good use again - and matched with such an awesome hat. What a little snow bunny!

Yes - the holidays are pretty awesome when you mix in kids - brings a whole new excitement to the season!

Fliss and Mike Adventures said...

As much as I love looking at pictures of little Flynn... I am going to say... I could not stop looking at your Colorado shots... makes me want to head back there again...

Though we did look for a flight to LV via Denver (Frontier) - oh my word... (and I do love Frontier - $700+ return to LV through CO)... ahhh... won't be heading to CO to soon...

My Heart Beats In China said...

Flynn is so stinkin cute! She's all ready for the holidays I see. What a sweetie.

Love,

Ivy