I profess to be a summer-loving kind of girl. I enjoy the sunshine (with sunscreen, trust me young people, it is important!), trips to the river, lounging by the pool, t-ball games, late-night BBQ and grilling with friends, and all the other fun things that summer holds.
As I get a bit older, I find myself loving the first cooler days of fall. I like to wear jeans and not swelter as soon as we step outside. I don’t like pumpkin spice anything (sorry, but gross!) but I love fall decorations. Pumpkins, pine cones, bold colors, are a reminder that seasons are changing.
It’s a tremendously busy time, as my work at the newspaper focuses on all the events that seem to take place in September and October, then gives way to the holidays of Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and the New Year.
I am a photographer as well and fall reminds people it is time to update the family photos that you didn’t have time for in spring, and most definitely before it is time to send out Christmas cards again.
When the sun goes down on Labor Day weekend, I feel like we blink and it is Halloween, we sleep a few hours, and it is time for turkey. Some big-box retailers add to the anxiety of the holidays, as we are already passing aisles of Christmas decorations, but haven’t even had a chance to eat the Reese’s from our kids’ Halloween candy yet.
I believe we are in such a rush to get from one thing to the next that we don’t stop to enjoy the moment we are currently living in.
Another fall favorite is football. I grew up on fields of all kinds, but mostly attended football and baseball games, tagging along with my dad on sports-writing assignments for years as a young child. Later on, I cheered through junior high and high school and attended even more games. My husband, Andrew, is a youth coach now and has been for the past five years. Needless to say, our lives are pretty football-centralized in September and October.
Our girls have already been to their fair share of football games as we regularly attend home games in Salem. There are times my mind wanders back to being a young kid and being so excited to watch the cheerleaders perform at halftime. I see the same look in my girls’ eyes when they sit in the stands and try to follow along.
I see the same look in the young kids’ eyes who hang on every moment of the game as their favorite player’s name is called by the announcer at the Tigers’ field.
On Saturday, I took the day off at the football game. I didn’t take a single photo, I just watched the game. I cheered when we won both, 12-6. I shared a laugh when my daughters couldn’t stop laughing after “Daddy threw his clipboard!” P.S.: He was excited and threw his clipboard in the air as the young Tigers scored a TD in the final moments of the game to end it 12-6. He then proceeded to leap around like a frog on its best day, which the girls happily reenacted a few times that afternoon.
For just a few hours, I forgot about the to-do list that seems to grow a page each day and enjoyed the moment.
I encourage you as the holidays quickly approach and we can’t seem to get one moment, to force yourself to take a step back and just enjoy it.