Monday, October 18, 2010

Carolina In My Mind

I love Fall.  It is my favorite time of year.  And for many years, during the fall of the year I would get so homesick that whenever I would hear the song Carolina In My Mind I would weep. 

I have lived all over this wonderful country from the east coast to the west coast, from the north and to the south.  And in some of those states, most noteably, Florida and  California, where I lived for a good number of years, there was not a real noticeable change of seasons.  Of course, these states offer  their own captivating beauty but they weren't my home.

I missed the smell of wood burning stoves early in the morning ~ smoke that permeated the fragrant heralding of cool nights.  I missed the beauty of first frost and how good a cup of hot cocoa tastes in front of a bonfire. I missed how the stars looked from my Carolina backyard.  But most of all I missed my family.  I missed my Granny telling me to count the foggy mornings in August to find out how many snow days we would have that winter.  Or how to tell by the wooly worms if winter would be short or long depending on the width of the rings on their body.  I missed having a real reason to snuggle under a soft quilt and I missed picking my own apples to carve a doll face from.

One time, while living in Orlando, I was particularly homesick.  The kids were wee little ones.  Our house had a fireplace.  (Who in Orlando uses them, much less needs them? I reckon it's for the ambience?)  I had the kids go gather all the leaves and twigs that they could find.  We placed them in paper bags, opened the flu, cranked the AC to maximum and created our own autumn festival.  My neighbors knew I was the odd one on the street.  You know, the Mom who would throw un-birthday parties, take the neighborhood kids in the backyard on a search for shelf fungi, you know, the odd one.  And one time, when I lived in Southern California, while  pregnant with my middle child and so very homesick for anyone with a southern accent, that my ex drove me up to Big Bear area.  Now that is a mountain range!  I did get to see beautiful fall foliage and gathered the LARGEST pinecones ever. 

The first year I moved the kids back home, 17 years ago, will always be fresh in my mind.  The children had never seen leaves changing their color.  I introduced them to the sheer joy of raking up mountains of leaves and jumping in them.  We foraged for acorns and pinecones to make a wreath.  And we carved  a pumpkin for the first time.  In my memory it was the finest carved pumpkin, let me tell you Martha Stewart had nothing over the masterpiece my crew came up with!


My kids are grown now, each living in their own place.  They still love fall.  They may not enjoy raking leaves as much these days, and perhaps they view acorns littering the walkways as ankle breakers, but they still enjoy the nostalgic memory of  homecoming when a wisp of wood smoke is in the air.

7 comments:

Hillbilly Handiworks said...

Lovely thoughts this morning. I have always lived in Missouri. We might complain about the weather...pretty much all year; but I don't think I would be happy without the change of seasons!

Each season has it's own special time for us. It's fun to eat the first fruits of summer; go apple and pumpkin picking in the fall; selecting and cutting our own Christmas tree in the winter; and hiking along overflowing brooks in the spring!

Where do you live now? I hope whereever it is that you enjoy your fall!

Blondie ~ Vintage Primitives said...

Good Morning, Tonya
I am happy to be back home in Carolina for the past 17 years.
And yes, apples, punkins and we have
gone out in our back woods many times to cut a fresh tree for Christmas.

Whimsey Creations said...

What a beautiful picture that last one is! I drove up to Murphy Saturday and the trees were turning nicely - not quite doing that here yet as much. Love the colors!

p.s.phyllis sews said...

I just came back from Pennsylvania visiting my parents. The leaves were changing, the air was crisp and it was so beautiful. It was really hard to come back to Texas!

Sounds like we have both travelled around this country alot!

Home will always be special and where we live has treasures yet to be discovered!

Blondie ~ Vintage Primitives said...

Jill, that last pic is taken from Lover's Leap. A favorite spot of Parkway riders.
Phyllis, thanks for coming back to visit. Yeah, travelled a lot, but now I want all my roads to lead me back to home here in Carolina.

Donna said...

Thank you for such a lovely post! I feel sorry for folks that don't have a fall season with the brilliant colors! They are missing out on one of God's greatest creations!

SayRah said...

Although I may complain about wanting to go somewhere...anywhere...but i truly know i wouldn't be happy if i wasn't in Carolina. There is something honestly special about North Carolina, that if you don't live here, you just wouldn't know. It's magical.
thank you, mom, for posting :)