The Road Not Taken

The Road Not Taken

The Road Not Taken

The Road Not Taken is one of my favorite poems (granted, it is one of America’s favorite poems). As I look forward to fall (I am over the heat and humidity), this poem always comes to mind.


The Road Not Taken
by Robert Frost

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth; Read more

God’s World

God’s World

sunrise
The sunrise over the Nansemond River on my commute this morning.

God’s World
BY EDNA ST. VINCENT MILLAY

O world, I cannot hold thee close enough!
     Thy winds, thy wide grey skies!
     Thy mists, that roll and rise!
Thy woods, this autumn day, that ache and sag
And all but cry with colour! That gaunt crag
To crush! To lift the lean of that black bluff!
World, World, I cannot get thee close enough!

Long have I known a glory in it all,
     But never knew I this;
     Here such a passion is
As stretcheth me apart,—Lord, I do fear
Thou’st made the world too beautiful this year;
My soul is all but out of me,—let fall
No burning leaf; prithee, let no bird call.

Source: Renascence and Other Poems (Harper & Brothers, 1917)


Learn more about Edna St. Vincent Millay.

Hope found in apples

Hope found in apples

I look forward to the day when Husband and I are able to do a little homesteading of our own. But searching for an affordable place with a few acres in a good location is an exercise in patience. (And we have been searching, for over a year and a half…) I want a wood stove or fireplace in the worst way, especially as fall descends and hints at the winter to come. I want to be chopping and stacking firewood, loading and stacking bales of hay (lots of stacking going on in my dreams).

I want to be gleaning the last of our homegrown goods from the garden, but our recent move meant that we had to give up the garden. For now.

We don’t have chickens of our own for fresh eggs, and we no longer live next to someone who does. But a coworker can bring us fresh eggs. And that will do. For now.

It isn’t time for all of that yet. And I want to live in the time and place where we are right now.

So I’m thankful for the rental home we are in that has plenty of room for our dozens and dozens of potted plants and trees (awaiting a permanent home), and a fenced yard for the puppy to play, and a large garage where we can store all the things we will need someday.

And even though the night sounds we listen to are of sirens instead of crickets, we can start the life we dream of in some small ways.

I have some lovely wool on my knitting needles and I’m learning, little by little, how to make a sweater.

Windows are open and blankets and quilts abound in our home right now.

And when we went camping for our anniversary, Husband and I picked up several bushels of apples, Empires and Gold Rush, that we will make into delicious applesauce. We’ll can everything and enjoy it for weeks and months to come–through the cold winter and all the way until next fall (we hope).

It will be quite the chore, but one I will relish with the promise it holds for the future. Hope abounds in the fall.

Apples

The way we celebrate

The way we celebrate

Husband and I celebrated three years of marriage last week. Certainly, it’s not long compared to my parents’ 36 years or my grandparents’ 60 years, but each and every year is something to celebrate.

I love that we are still new to this. It’s an adventure unlike any other and we are navigating it and enjoying it to the best of our abilities.

So to mark the completion of our third year, we chose to do one of the things we love best: camping.

We packed up the truck, the pup and a weekend’s worth of food and took off for the Blue Ridge Mountains. This is one of our favorite places in the whole world. Given the choice, we would move to the mountains in a heartbeat. (But there are little things to consider that keep us where we are, like employment.)

It was three days and two nights of bliss, just Husband, the pup and me. We hiked, we photographed, we made campfires and cooked delicious meals. The things I love to do, like reading and knitting are oh-so-much better done by lamplight in the great outdoors.

We even saw a black bear (I’m sorry to say I didn’t get a photo because it was only for a moment…then again, I’m glad he didn’t stick around).

Happy Anniversary, Husband. I hope and pray each year is even better than the last.

Sherando Lake

Camping

Collecting firewood

Hiking

Trickling waterfall

River rocks

Ginger

Tree bark

Cooking Thai curry

Campfire

Shhhh…

Shhhh…

BootCan I share a secret?

I broke out my boots.

Yep. It’s September and I’m not keeping them hidden in the closet any longer. The sweaters may have to wait a few more weeks (I do live in in Virginia Beach after all, it’s a little warm for this northern girl). And while I do drink tea all summer long (at least one cup in the morning and another when I get to work), fall brings on a whole other realm of tea-drinking for me. It becomes my constant companion. And I daydream about the lovely flavors of tea I can indulge in this fall.

And, I’m even contemplating a haircut.

I haven’t really gotten my hair cut since my 19th birthday when I chopped off somewhere around 10 inches and donated it to Wigs for Kids. In the 8 years since then I’ve had 3 or 4 trims. A big part of me is just saying “It’s time.” Time for the cut, time for the change, time for the relief from the tangled mess of curls that falls to my waist.

Do I like having long hair? Yes. Do I like the daily upkeep and time required to maintain it? Not at all.

Even Husband is in favor of a cut. He didn’t used to be, but he tires of me wearing it up all the time–pony tails, buns, braids–it’s rarely ever down. And what’s the point if I don’t wear it down? Plus, it takes so long to wash. So. Long.

Another part of me is a little afraid to get it cut. A part of me tells me that my long hair is a statement. A part of my identity. It sets me apart as unique. If I cut it short, I’ll be just like everyone else.

That’s when it really hit me. Identity. Is my identity really in my hair? Because hair is just hair and there are far more crucial aspects of my identity. For instance, I am a child of the King. And that is really all the identity I need.

I think shorter hair will free up my time and decrease my level of frustration every morning. It will likely even cut down on the number of headaches that I get so often. And honestly, all of that will help me be a less stressed wife, friend, employee etc. Is that worth giving up the (false) identity of long hair? Methinks so.

Boots, tea and a new look for fall? Sounds fun =).

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I love collecting quotes, especially from authors I admire and enjoy. A lovely turn of phrase can change the most dreary day into one of beauty. On Saturday we move, and I’m trying not to think about it. So instead I’m thinking about fall. Autumn. The beauty and enchanting quality of the season soon to come. We’ll be settled, or at least landed. Back to living life, rather than watching it race by while we pack, and pack, and pack.

I can feel autumn coming, in the light breeze, the refreshing rain, the gentle mornings. Sure, it’s almost 90*. But that won’t last. August never does. Soon it will be September and I will begin pulling out sweaters and boots just because I can.

George Eliot, aka Mary Anne Evans, was a like-minded soul, apparently.

Autumn quote by George Eliot