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    Laura Drury

    My life too has been filled with endings and beginnings this fall. I am ending my "time-off" and returning to the work world. I am finishing lots of project at home ... now I look around with great satisfaction at a home that looks good and is much more green environmentally. I have finished lamenting my time away from work and am really enjoying it.

    Fall is my very favorite time of year!

    Traci Maddox

    Always timely, Carol! I was saying just yesterday that I feel that fall is a time of new beginnings! I think our culture of "back-to-school" makes us anticipate new possibilities in the fall--and allows us to get back to that student role. Thanks for the reminder!

    JC Morgan

    Wonderful reflection ... you reminded me of another perspective on autumn, as well. A few years ago, I was studying Shiatsu massage. I learned that, in Traditional Chinese Medicine, autumn is the time to decide what to you no longer need and can throw away, versus what is essential and worth storing for the winter. I imagine busy squirrels getting ready to hibernate/slow down. The easy days of summer are behind them!
    Prior to learning this, I'd always thought spring was the time of renewal -- think "spring cleaning."
    Instead, I now think of back-to-school time/autumn as a season to refocus on the simple, vital skills/tools/items that will really serve me on the journey through winter.

    Carol Ross

    I'm enjoying hearing your impressions of fall and the memories this post has triggered for you. I was literally taken "back-to-school" when I received an email from one of my middle school teachers who had read (and enjoyed) this post! Please keep adding your memories of back-to-school. It's fascinating to hear!

    www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1135104531

    Great post, Carol! Autumn has always been my favorite time of year -- seeing the pretty foliage, feeling the cooler breezes. Fall is really quite a respite from the hot summer, but it's always brought memories too. I'm often surprised to recall images that feel so recent: wearing a crisp new dress the first day in elementary school, feeling the nervous anticipation of high school, and the excitement and boldness of going away to university.

    You hit on so many touchpoints for me, plus you gave me something else to think about -- that looking at this time of year is a chance to begin again. That's why I love reading your posts, Carol, you have wonderful insights. Thank you!

    Carol Ross

    Thanks for the kind words, Carol. Speaking of a chance to begin again, one of my readers just emailed me today that Rosh Hashanah, which is occurring this weekend, is commonly known as the Jewish New Year. One website describes this holiday as, "a time to begin introspection, looking back at the mistakes of the past year and planning the changes to make in the new year."

    I love the idea of beginning again. Even in the bleakest of circumstances or saddled by a history riddled with mistakes, we can start anew. Not just in the fall, but in every moment.

    Dawn

    Dear Carol,
    I've always loved fall, not sure if it's the back to school or back to "something-ness" ...or the end of summer and all that it implies. It's just such a colorful time of change and a time of preparing for the next season - what's next? It's putting on sweaters, it's filled with the crispness of the fall morning air; and that air is filled with expectation; small children racing for their first bus ride to first grade. I can't even remember the first anything recently; and so I yearn for that same feeling of blissfully unaware expectation as I go about my day and my routine. (notice i didn't say unconscious - unaware as in wonderment) Here's to first grade, to big fat #2 pencils, to big chief tablets, to jack and janet and buster brown shoes. Now that should take ya' back; I'm a bit older, oh but what a memory you jogged for me with your featured article. The imagery is physically tangible.
    Thanks Carol you're a gem.
    Jai ho!
    Blessings,
    Dawn

    Carol Ross

    Thanks, Dawn, for the visceral memories that come with your colorful icons of back to school time. I also love your term, "the first anything" as a delightful moment that we don't get to experience much as an adult. Here's to creating more "firsts" as part of our everyday experience.

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