Changing Seasons

Changing seasons are markers in our lives. With September, we begin to think of the end of summer and the advent of autumn. School starts up in many places. And routines at home change to keep with schedules required for school and work and more. In Oregon, harvesting apples and grapes begin. And the cider and winemaking processes start. Farm stands show off pumpkins along with fall-colored mums.

But the September to October transition has been different this year. In seasons past, October weather gave warm days with cooler nights. The rain began to drizzle and then strengthen as October progressed. But not this year. There are days when it feels like winter.
 
Weather patterns are changing all over our country. In Oregon, we have snow in the mountains. Today Timberline Lodge reports an 11″ base on Mt. Hood. Often the operators of the ski lift at Mt. Hood hold their collective breath into November. The wait for an opening date for the season is long sometimes. History also shows seasons when the snowfall was light enough to close the season early.
 
Record snowfalls hit across the midwest last week while a heatwave struck the east coast. Current conditions here and around our country and the world need us to question why.
 
What is going on in our world to cause these climate changes? I don’t know if anyone has the answer.
 
Yet, Greta Thunberg, a young climate activist, seems to have a message. Thunberg hopes government leaders of the world and we as individuals will listen. Her words may hold something close to the answer, if not the answer.
 
If you’d like to hear Thunberg’s message, you can listen to her speech at the UN Climate Action Summit 2019 here:
 

 
I am not endorsing everything Greta says. But I do admire her courage, intelligence, and willingness to speak up. I do believe we have endangered our earth and its residents, both human and otherwise. We have not been good stewards of this earth. But I also believe our Mother Earth has gone through changes in previous times. Times when neither you nor I were alive to witness it. That doesn’t mean I wish to witness a cataclysmic change in our world.
 
If government and world leaders, including our own, choose to ignore what’s happening, then the words of a 16-year old young woman are important to hear. Personally, I hold my heart and hands up to a Higher Power for direction in my life. Yet, it is also important that I make myself aware of what I can do to preserve this world for generations to come.
 
Let’s all do our part in whatever way we can.

 

Assurance: a Poem by William Stafford

Assurance by William Stafford

You will never be alone, you hear so deep

a sound when autumn comes. Yellow

pulls across the hills and thrums,

or the silence after lightning before it says

its names- and then the clouds’ wide-mouthed

apologies. You were aimed from birth:

you will never be alone. Rain

will come, a gutter filled, an Amazon,

long aisles- you never heard so deep a sound,

moss on rock, and years. You turn your head-

that’s what the silence meant: you’re not alone.

The whole wide world pours down.

– from The Way It Is, Graywolf Press, 1999

 

Featured Image Attribution: Larisa Koshkina from Pixabay

Autumn in Oregon

Autumn in Oregon heralds our rainiest season of the year. Weather prognosticators promised rain for days. Areas nearby and surrounding us received showers. Sometimes only sprinkles. Our neighborhood received nothing.

 
Until…last Saturday night. We awoke on Sunday morning with evidence of overnight rain. And we’ve had several good…let’s say heavy showers since.
 
When it rains in Oregon, we experience fog of varying levels–light, moderate, heavy. Especially when driving through forested areas. The fog dances through the branches of thick and heavy evergreens. It may sound a bit spooky, but it’s a lovely site and cozy too. The white-gray of the fog softens everything around it.
 
Sitting here watching the rainfall, I’m entertained by everchanging colors. The sky goes from blue to gray to almost black and then bursts open with either rain or sun breaks and white clouds.
 
The leaves are changing from green to the bright colors of autumn. With the days shortening, darkness drops its curtain earlier. Then the sky turns a blue-black dotted with sparkling lights if the sky is clear.
 
As I watch the changing of the seasonal colors and weather, I sense the Presence of the One who made it all possible. He calls me to rethink changes in my life and the lives of those around me.
 
I take a few moments and reflect on family and friends. I realize our great-grandchildren are no longer toddlers but are four, seven, and ten. Oh, and a new one on the way in January!
 
I take a look too at those friends who have left us for a better place and give thanks for their presence in our lives. God now has new angels in His heaven looking down on us.
 
Always present God provides our every need. Even a good conversation on a somewhat dark and dreary day.
Featured image attribution: Knopka Ivy on Unsplash

Unexpected Visitor

 

Yesterday was a bit different from other days since my recovery began. I had an unexpected visitor arrive. Despite plenty of books to read, knitting to knit, and writing to ponder, the days are often somewhat boring. And it doesn’t help that I’ve had a minor setback that limits my activity level. 
 
Back to my unexpected visitor. Looking out the large window into our backyard, I noticed the leaves on our vine maple fluttering. If there was a breeze blowing, none of the other trees were joining in. 
 
And then I spied him. A small squirrel bouncing from limb to limb. Stopping here and there to find a nibble of something. Then off he’d go either higher or lower on a branch, all the while bouncing as he went. I found myself giggling with joy. Laughter bubbling up inside me. This little fellow was so entertaining. At one point, he jumped from a branch and it came right back and hit him in the keister. Double laughter!
 
Tell me God doesn’t know when we need a boost, and I’ll tell you why I know otherwise. Here sat a woman wishing for a day brightener. And into her backyard came a squirrel with a routine at the ready. As he munched and danced his way through the tree, he also performed acrobatics. And all for this one woman-audience.
 
I felt lighter as he bounded on his way to his next assignment. His little impromptu performance filled me with gratitude.
 
nature, quote, time, trees, Katrina Mayer
Via Country Living Magazine

 

Featured Image Attribution: By Faith McDonald on Unsplash