October, October, where did you go?
Like a blurry streak across my periphery, you were in and out the door before I even knew what was happening.  Harper Lee’s birthday, Continental Divide Trail Race, Halloween (the whole week of it), and fall festivities like corn mazes and pumpkin patches filled our days, and before I even had time to breathe, you were gone again… until next year.
And, now, it’s November.  Leaves falling.  Clocks changing.  Light growing dim.  
Time to slow down.
We went back to our alma mater for some Appalachian football thanks to Harper Lee’s summer reading award.  We toured the campus, saw the locker rooms, ate at the food court (high adventure for the kids), and waxed nostalgic as we watched the sororities and fraternities set up for tailgate.  Them in their suits and ties, beer in hand; us with our hats and gloves, two kids in tow.  How times change.
This past weekend, we headed down to Greensboro for the Touring Theater of North Carolina’s production of Deployed.  It was such a treat to hear my work read by someone else and an honor to be part of such a wonderful performance.  
If you’re in the Greensboro area (or somewhere within driving distance), there are two more shows this coming weekend. 
I finally met Joseph Bathanti, North Carolina’s Poet Laureate, and several other artists who reminded me, once again, how much I love this– poetry and writing and creative expression.  I always feel right in my element somehow, and I always leave inspired and renewed.
Which is good… because I really needed it.
I thought I was doing really well in the midst of all this activity and hub-bub, and then I sort of crashed.  I found myself tired, sick and feeling plain old crappy this weekend.  I flat-out needed a break, and the extra day off was exactly that.
It was one of those perfectly perfect days.  Like old times.
Raking leaves and playing with goats.
Children– dirty, sweaty, and laughing.
Soil under my fingernails.
A long walk in the woods.
Homemade bread and soup.
Handmade paper lantern luminaries to celebrate the darker months ahead.
A good book in hand.
The smell of fresh laundry, the hum of the dryer.
Peace and quiet.
Most of the action shots of the day seem to involve rough housing of one sort or another. This, I think, is a necessity of childhood.  I’ve never been one to keep kids from roughing one another up.  It builds character.  
A perfect day turned into a peaceful night– a light glow on the porch.  November.