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Five Sure Signs of Fall

Even before the trees change, I can tell it’s almost here.

Summer, I hardly knew you. You with your beautiful beach days and camping fun. Your lazy mornings and warm bright evenings. Cookouts, water parks, sunscreen and bug spray. The best day of the year, by a long shot and especially if you have school-age children, is the first day of summer.

For me, it’s as though I’ve been holding my breath for 10 months and am finally able to exhale. I’ve checked off holidays and events, projects and homework, practices and birthdays. No more reminding the same reminders to the kids in the chance they might hear me. Did you shower? Have you brushed your teeth? Did you put on deodorant? Do you have gym clothes? Is your trumpet at school? Is your agenda ready? Text me when your meeting is done?

Maybe someday, for kicks, I’ll let them stink it up. (But probably not.)

I’m already dreaming about next summer. Crazy right? Trying to plan the best way to squeeze every ounce out of the nine weeks I get with them.

The official first day of fall is Sept. 23 but it’s already here, even if some of you refuse to admit it by leaving your air conditioners in. This is how I know:

1. FOOTBALL is back baby! Thank goodness they worked out a new CBA because fall without football is like a really nice cool day without ... football. . Fall has three distinct smells: leaves, apples and whatever yummy thing I’m cooking on Sunday. I wish all your teams good luck this season and remember, there is NO SHAME losing to the Patriots. Go Pats!

2. I have to dust off my jeans. Ugh. I’m just not a jeans kind of person. I was actually not allowed to wear jeans when I was a kid and at 6’2,” I’m scarred by a lifetime of highwater denim. They only recently began selling women’s jeans with an inseam long enough for me. I buy multiple pairs online, (they don’t sell "talls" in stores) try them on and return what I can’t use. What a hassle. And besides, I need more stretch, or a drawstring waist ... something. I open that little used drawer and see layers of folded denim, Yuck. If you see me in a skirt, don't ask me why I'm dressed up. I'm not, I’m avoiding that drawer.

3. Everything tastes like pumpkin. This is one of my favorite fall harbingers. Coffee, beer, muffins, donuts, pies. Pumpkin everywhere. I make the best pumpkin chocolate chips cookies ever, better than a regular chocolate chip cookie, trust me.  When starts serving Pumpkin Spice and starts selling pumpkin muffins, it’s fall folks. Get them while you can. (Hmmmm...this is a light bulb moment in my jean dilemma.)

4. My bank account starts magically shrinking. We’re a pretty frugal family. I think more money goes out of our account in the fall than any other time of year, including Christmas. My checkbook never sees this much action. School pictures, Girl Scout registration, Community Use swim sign-ups, fundraisers, band jackets, instrument rental, dance lessons. I’m not complaining, I’m happy that Milford offers so many things for my family to participate in. This year I was more prepared than last. But there will be no new jeans for me.

5. Finally, Halloween is around the corner. Yahoo! It is my absolute favorite holiday, unless you consider my birthday a holiday. I’m all about the scary movies, the gorier the better. The kids costumes have been conceived and are ready for construction. And I'm hopeful that this year I will pull off a Halloween party instead of just buying the magazines and imagining such a party. 

Fall is here, hold on to it while you can. You know what’s next.

Algot Runeman September 13, 2011 at 09:08 PM
Pumpkins and their squash cousins are everywhere. Local supermarket stockers were stunned to recently find that they had appropriated a watermelon box. http://runeman.org/photo/watermellons.jpeg
Danielle Horn September 14, 2011 at 12:24 AM
Algot, I might request to our design team that we get a "like" button, just so I could like this comment. :0)
Jennifer September 15, 2011 at 10:38 AM
What a coincidence! I make an amazing pumpkin chocolate muffin. Ah, who am I kidding, they're unfrosted cupcakes :) For me the sure signs of fall are the arrival of the Little Debbie Pumpkin Delights at Target, realizing it's too cold to wear sandals, and like you, the swift depletion of my checking account. Oil budget payment starts up again, along with our car insurance, dance, girl scout dues, school pictures, etc., etc., etc. Looking forward to the cooler weather though!

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