I awoke this morning to the sound of a flock of geese flying by.  As I opened my eyes, I was facing the window, which revealed a bleak, gray, fall day with just a few colorful leaves still hanging on the trees.   The flock was large enough that it was still passing overhead and I watched the last dozen or so birds as they honked noisily, as if to break up an avian traffic jam.

We have enjoyed a long, warm fall that is slowly evolving into winter.  We’ve had a few nights down in the 20’s and there’s been a skim of ice on the pond out back.  My garden is now put to bed and I’ve taken care of the other out-door chores; such as putting the garden hose away, cleaning and storing the BBQ grill, etc.   I’ve also purchased plastic film to be installed over the windows this weekend.  Because my Little-Apartment-on-the-Pond has so many windows, it makes it gloriously sunny on bright days and takes advantage of summer breezes to keep things cool on summer days, but during windy winter weather, the leaky windows cause the curtains and drapes to flutter and the drafts seem to suck the heat right out of the building;  so, the plastic window covers are very important!   I have my electric Christmas window candles out, that I will seal behind the plastic on the window sills.  They’ll just have to stay there until spring…. but I will enjoy their cozy glow when I plug them in for the holidays.  I have a lot of festive decorations and I’ve asked my daughters if they would like some of them.  They have young children who would appreciate the furry animated reindeer and penguins and the many strings of lights and extra ornaments.  I’ve decided that I’ll get a ‘real’ tree this year, just a smallish one… maybe 5 feet tall, and put it on the antique tool chest (used as a toy box) in the living room, so it will sit in front of the double windows.  I’ll put out a few other decorations, but I don’t have a family at home anymore, so there’s no point in going hog-wild with Decking the Halls.

In the mean time, there’s still Thanksgiving on the horizon.  My oldest daughter will be hosting T-Day dinner and I’m going to volunteer to bring some Shoo-fly Pies (a holiday tradition in my family) and whatever else she needs.  I look forward to the festivities not for the meals, but for the family-time.  I thoroughly enjoy spending time with my adult daughters (turning 30 and 28 soon) and their families.  The grandkids are a constant delight and I never tire of them, even if they are a handful all at once!

One thing I do tire of is the constant lack of time.  I always seem to be hurrying to keep up….. keep up with work, with my chores,  my errands, my correspondence and other paperwork; as much as I strive to catch up and even get ahead, it never seems to last long.  Maybe I need to find a way to manage my time better.  I’ve tried setting the alarm earlier so I can get a few hours head start but then I just end up exhausted after a week or so and find myself nodding off in the middle of the afternoon.  (I’ve always been a strong ‘napper’, as I say: “I don’t take naps, naps take me!”)  At any rate, I do have to find some way to invent more time for myself.  I don’t waste time with television shows, so I can’t cut that out of my schedule.  I only take my truck out of the garage to run my errands once a week, so I’m not out gallivanting around, so I can’t cut there, either….. as much as I would like to have some time to ‘gallivant’!   It seems ironic that I should live in such a beautiful area with gorgeous ocean beaches and a quaint down-town area, all worthy of postcards, but I seldom have any time to visit them.  Oh, well, this weekend I will be carving out some time to go run some errands and have the family over for a Sunday pancake breakfast.

Among my weekend errands are my plans to pick up 8 or 10 buckets of broken bricks (a Craig’s List giveaway…. assuming they’re not gone already) which I want to use in my vegetable garden pathways.  Yes, I’m already planning my 2012 garden!  I can’t wait to get out there and get those new beds built, build the extended fencing and get everything ready for another year’s production!   I tend to work in my gardens year-round, or at least putter in them so that they’ll be ready in the spring….. when once again, they geese will be winging their way back to us.

View from the kitchen.