October is the best month

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I love October. I truly do.

This is certainly my favorite month of the entire year. It always has been.

I honestly can’t find anything to complain about in the 10th month.

What’s not to love?

This is the month where the temperatures are literally perfect . . . cool in the mornings and evenings, pleasantly warmish in the afternoons.

This is the month when you can crawl into your closet and pull out the beloved boots. I love the first moment when I take a fresh look at what I have . . . it’s as if I’ve forgotten about these old friends and then we are reunited.

This is the month when strange things become interesting decorations. All of a sudden, ugly gourds and dry bunches of cornstalks are heralded as artwork.

This is the month when we start thinking pumpkin is cool again. Retailers have noticed – right now, you can purchase pumpkin spice air fresheners, pumpkin-flavored coffee, pumpkin-flavored quick oatmeal mix, pumpkin-flavored beer (not kidding), pumpkin-flavored potato chips. The scent/taste of pumpkin is in yogurt, cheesecake, candles, English muffins, lattes, ice cream, soups, hand soap, bagels, lotion, breakfast cereal, facial creams, vinaigrette, croutons, ravioli, dog treats and bubble bath. Pumpkin, pumpkin, pumpkin . . .

This is the month when we can actually open the windows and let the fresh air in. October is that rare span of time in which we don’t need air conditioning and we don’t need the furnace to run. Not only is it cheaper to survive for a mere 30 days or so, it is refreshing to let the breeze blow through the curtains . . . especially if you need to dilute the aroma of pumpkin spice.

This is the month when squirrels are actually entertaining. And it seems as if they are everywhere – probably because they are collectively so busy. I actually spent 15 minutes the other day, just watching a bunch of squirrels hurriedly carry food through the yard. I marveled at the fact they had these large nut-type objects in their mouths – where on earth did they find them? And even as fascinating was the question of where in the heck were they going with them? I also marveled that squirrels seem to make everything so much harder for themselves – they could have just carried the nuts across the yard, on the ground. But no, they chose to walk the high-wire that is my neighbor’s fence, taking the more precarious route to the destination. Good luck little guys . . . hope you get everything done before the snow flies.

This is the month in which I can make as much soup as I want. Truth be told, I can eat and make soup all year long. Even if it’s 100 degrees outside, I will still crave a bowl of chili. I know, I’m weird. Give me anything and I’ll make soup out of it. Well, except for that cucumber/mint/avocado concoction I tried to copy from the Food Network – lukewarm green goo is not recommended, even if Bobby Flay says it’s OK.

This is the month when I don’t have to stew about not having a proper, uniform tan. We can finally put on clothes that cover up our imperfections and nobody can care that my skin is not necessarily what one would see on the cover of a magazine.

This is the month of work and reward as the farmers hit the fields and bring in what they’ve grown. I love to watch the combines, trucks, tractors and trailers move down the rows. I love to watch the giant piles of gold grow and grow. I remember as a kid being lulled to sleep by the sound of grain dryers and I smile every time I hear someone ask about another person’s moisture count (it’s as natural in Nebraska as asking how the family is).

This is the month in which I was born. I suppose that’s a good thing, seeing how I wouldn’t exist if I hadn’t been born. The bad part is this is the month when the odometer number switches, indicating I’ve unfortunately gotten yet another year older.

That’s OK. I’ll just put on my favorite boots, fill the crockpot with chicken noodle, watch the squirrels, pile gourds on the table . . . and crack open a pumpkin-flavored beer.


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