End of Summer – Yay!

Sun's rays burning through fog.
Sun’s rays burning through fog.

Don’t let the title fool you, I like summer. Leaving for work in the daylight, walking Maddie before most people are awake for her to bark at, ‘cuz they either said “oh she’s such a pretty dog” or they should have said “oh she’s such a pretty dog,” but kept on walking. The past two summers have been even better because, in exchange for a small donation to a local food pantry, we get to wear jeans to work every day between the June Board meeting and Labor Day. I also like that my favorite bar has outdoor seating in the summer. I never sit outside, but others do, so the bar is nearly empty and I get one of my favorite stools (second stool from either end). So, why am I happy about summer coming to an end?

Easy.

Autumn. Fall. Indian Summer.

Call it whatever you want, but in New England, it’s the best season on Earth. I’ve experienced fall in western Pennsylvania, Georgia, Seattle, Washington and here in Connecticut. Connecticut wins, hands down. It may be the price we pay for harsh winters, nor’easters and hot, sticky summer days, but if that’s the case, it’s a fair price. Autumn in New England is cool, crisp and beautiful. How do I know it’s coming? Well, it’s not just the calendar, it’s a thousand little signs, like:

Oktoberfest is on tap, fields have been harvested and turned under, farm stands are opening later, closing earlier or no longer opening at all. Mums are for sale EVERYWHERE, school buses have taken over the streets, I’m wearing khakis to work, geese are eating the remnants of the corn harvest and I get to see the sunrise while driving to work. Shadows are long in the morning, but the boat dock is still in the water at Great River Park. Leaf bags are for sale and, although it’s way too early people, Halloween decorations are showing up on houses. Agricultural fairs are happening and MiMi is ready for a fire in the wood stove. Leaves are starting to turn and fog is here in the morning.

I’m ready for fall. I’ve planned for fall. I’ve scheduled half of my vacation days between September 15th and November 15th so I can enjoy those beautiful fall days. And, football. Did I mention football? I didn’t, but yeah, football. WVU, Pitt, Georgia, Iowa State (unless they’re playing WVU) and, of course, the Steelers. Fall is even better when my team is still playing baseball in Buctober, I mean October #LetsGoBucs.

OK, you get the picture. No, I meant that literally, I’m going to stop “talking” and share some pictures with you. Enjoy autumn wherever you happen to experience it (but know that it’s better here in New England, just sayin’).

60 thoughts on “End of Summer – Yay!

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  1. You are right, fall is beautiful in New England. I have only one problem with fall and that is the acres of leaves we have to dispose of. It is the one time of year when I wish I had a postage stamp sized yard. LOL I tried a tomato and sun butter sandwich this summer, and it wasn’t bad. Love your photos today and here’s hoping all your teams have a great season. :-)

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    1. Thanks Judy. We have a postage stamp sized lot, and we removed most of the trees, but we still end up gathering leaves forever. Still, it’s a great time to be outside. One of my teams already made the debut loss, which is the one thing I never like about New England, but…

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    1. I love any type of tomato sandwiches and I love when we have so many tomatoes that I can have them whenever I want. My favorite is white bread (or pita) butter and mayo, but since I had the muffin and I had the tomato, what the heck, Give it a try, you might be surprised. Thanks for the comment.

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  2. Dan you did a beautiful job describing the Fall in you part of the world and what you like about it. So sweat that you can wear jeans if you donate to the bank. And I liked the part about your favorite bar stool. Out hear in California, what I like about the summer is that we get to sit out on the patios at some of our favorite restaurants in afternoon or evening and enjoy the great weather. Many times we don’t get much of a Fall in Southern California. I do like it when we do and I feel that coolness in the air.

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    1. Thanks Deborah. I’m usually at the bar after a day of working around the house, In the summer, that’s usually outside and I prefer the cool of the bar. Plus, my friends tend to come to the bar as well, so it’s a chance to socialize. I like that we do things that give back to our community too. Thanks for the comment.

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  3. Great series of images, and signs you recognize as fall is coming. Fall is my second favorite season.
    He-Man and Baby Girl watched the opening game with the Steelers -she wore one of her Steelers t-shirts too. Hope they good season!

    Peanut. Butter and tomatoes together? I’m gob-smacked! I may try it.

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    1. Peanut butter, butter and tomatoes. I read it about it on WordPress so it must be good. I think the Steelers will have a good year. It’s always hard for me to go to work after they lose to NE, but it happens. Still a fan :)

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  4. Mmm, Fall. I agree, Fall in New England is perfection! Here in the Midwest is still beautiful, but we’re not there yet. The corn still stands, yellow and drying for dollies, and the a/c went back on last night. But the squirrels are bustling about and I took a long shadow photo yesterday. We are quickly approaching barn jacket weather and trips to the country :)

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    1. The squirrels are working overtime here. Maddie sees them on our walks and I tell her “they don’t have anyone feeding them cans of squirrel chow every morning.” She looks at me like I’m an idiot. Truth be told, we have had winters when we have fed the squirrels and my wife is already worried about the bunnies. I wore a jacket to work for the first time on Monday. I’m looking forward to jacket weather. I hope you guys get a nice fall.

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  5. I like fall, too, but I join in the celebration somewhat warily every year. Why? Because fall heralds winter, my least favorite season. I suppose I should just enjoy the crisp days and not dwell on that, but it’s not easy. The end of baseball season doesn’t help. But hey, falling leaves! Things get cool, and they look cool. And I have a birthday right near Halloween, so there’s that. Viva la fall!

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    1. Let’s hope baseball doesn’t end too early Paul. The Pirates have a chance to play meaningful ball in October. My birthday is a few days after Halloween and a few weeks before we’re likely to see any snow.

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  6. Dan, I remember fall in Connecticut well! I lived there for many years. When I visit usually in spring/summer, I’m amazed at all the green trees everywhere. Can just see them bursting with fall colors. I live in Southern California, but some memories stay a lifetime. Chryssa

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    1. You’re right Chyssa, I don’t think I could ever forget a fall day in New England with all the colors and the bright blue sky. Of course there are also the sludgy piles of wet brown leaves, but I seem to be able to forget those fine. Thanks.

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  7. I believe you Dan. Lovely photos. I’m a huge fan of Autumn. A chance to start over every year at school. New clothes, new booksack. Do you remember the ones that girls used to carry that looked like miniature briefcases? God I loved those. And leaf piles. Halloween Carnivals. Trick or Treat. Bonfires. Ahhhhh. It is just all too short lived in the South. Bout the time you get the house decorated fior Thanksgiving, you can hear Christmad music and jingle bells…..enjoy yours! 😄

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    1. I’ve already seen people with Halloween decorations up Cheryl. I’m sure Christmas decorations are piling up in the stores. It can last a good long time here, although we did get 12″ of heavy wet snow on Halloween a few years ago that brought trees and trees and trees down. 10 days without power! I want fall to last this year, maybe until April.

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    2. Hmmm, I thought I replied to this. Oh well. I am hoping that Fall lasts a long time here this year Cheryl, maybe until April. I’m ready for it but I don’t know about being ready for winter. We set records for cold last year. I can do without that. Thanks for the comment

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  8. I’m totally in agreement with you, Dan. Fall in New England is the best. I would almost add ‘on earth’ but I haven’t been in each and every country on earth. When I left France for California I missed the four seasons. In Massachusetts I fell head first for the fall and missed it a lot when we returned to CA. Now that I get to spend much more time in Maine, I feel very lucky to live through the best of fall season. The colors and the mood during the months of September and October are unique and worth the harsh winter. It’s, in my opinion, why fall is so cherished by New Englanders.
    Enjoy!

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    1. Thanks for dropping by and leaving as comment Joanne. I took a quick look over at your place. I think I need to spend a little more time there. I’m not native, but I’ve been in CT a little more than half my life and fall is the best part.

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  9. I’ve always wanted to visit New England in the fall. I see photos in magazines and the color is breathtaking. Something to add to the bucket list…

    I was thinking the other day that with the change of season, I get to watch the sunrise when I go to work. This morning, we had an exceptionally pretty one. In regard to the photo with tomatoes and peanut butter – try the tomatoes with warm biscuits, butter and honey. It’s sooooo yummy!

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    1. I am also catching the sunrise on the way to work. The end of fall will have me catching the sunset on my way home and that’s kinda sad, unless it’s a very nice one. I’m not a big fan of honey, but biscuits, oh yeah I could see tomatoes on a biscuit. Thanks Mary. PS, when I first moved here, I thought fall would be a great time to ride my motorcycle. It was, but I had some close calls with the leaves. The following spring, I dumped the bike at an intersection that was still covered in sand from the winter. That’s when I gave up.

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      1. That darn sand! It’s too bad it made you give up. My personal fear when riding was gravel. I hated it and dumped the bike at least once in it (but thankfully when I was almost at a standstill). There’s so much to look out for – sand, gravel, potholes, greasy wet spots, etc. I think once you’ve experienced a few of those hazards, you start to wonder what the heck you are doing on two wheels.

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        1. Add to that the new trend (at least here) of milling and resurfacing major roads every summer. I can’t imagine riding on those milled surfaces or the pavement edges when one lane is paved but others aren’t.

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  10. I like peanut butter and I like tomatoes, but together? I think I’ll keep them separate.

    Living in Tennessee (not a native, never a native), tobacco is one of the main stays here. I had no idea that tobacco was grown in Connecticut.

    I’m really not a football fan, but when I was in high school I went to every game. I got in free because I played in the band. I loved the socializing that went on and ended up looking forward to football season during those years because of that.

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    1. I can understand the desire to keep those two favorites in separate places. I was surprised at how good it is but I haven’t perfected the mix. Too much peanut butter and it overwhelms the tomatoes. The tobaccos grown here is mainly for the wrapper leaf of cigars. Some people do grow the stuff that gets chopped for filler, but not much of that. The amount grown has been steadily shrinking and tobacco fields are giving way to industrial parks and shopping. One of the reasons I follow my teams up here is because none of them are New England teams. I like that I’m a little different in this crowd. Thanks for the comment.

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    1. I think Homer would be, “hmm, tomaaato, OK give me half-a-dozen english muffins, a tub of butter, some peanut butter and my eatin’ hat” That works for me too :) Thanks for spending some time here Elizabeth.

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  11. Mom likes Connecticut best, since she attended elementary school in Hartford. I liked the few Fall’s we traveled to where mom’s father’s (Grandpa Mattson) family was from in Rockport. The whole state of New York was amazingly beautiful when we drove through it, despite my loving New England’s fall season. Ohio isn’t too bad but the U. P. Upper Peninsula of Michigan had deep, clear blue water and the farthest north lighthouse was pretty cool, too.
    I took a photo of my two grandsons’ shadows on the sidewalk, one is 10 and a half, other is 6 and a half. They thought the photo was really neat, Dan. I like how you have November b’day and yet, you don’t seem like a Scorpio. Mom, my granddaughter Marley, my grandson Skyler, my sister in law Susan and I are all 5 Nov. babies. :) Enjoy your upcoming Autumn, Dan.

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    1. I had an aunt who was born in November Robin and she always told me that the best people are born in that month :) I did like fall in Pittsburgh, and I’ve driven through Pennsylvania and New York in October and I enjoyed this season in those states too. The only place that I didn’t really like fall was the Pacific northwest. The rain started, the days were gray and most of the trees remained green.

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  12. Ha, I was a tad ambivalent when I saw your title, Dan. But let me tell you, I can certainly understand where you’re coming from. Winters up here are becoming unbearable, so the onset of Fall makes me quite nervous. But Fall also happens to be my favourite season, and this may surprise you, but a lot of the time, the weather up here in the North is pretty comparable to New England. Sure, there are years when our Fall is miserable and rainy. But other years — like this year — Fall is just magical. I’m pleased that our leaves haven’t begun to turn yet (they never last very long), and while the temp HAS dipped down close to freezing once or twice in the last 2 weeks, the rest of the time we’ve been sitting at a very balmy and steady 20-30ºC. That’s not typical for this time of the year (heck, last summer we hit 30 only once, and that was at the end of June!), but wow, is it ever nice. I’ll take a Fall like this every year.

    The thought of winter makes me cringe, but I must admit, like MiMi, I DO really enjoy a nice fire in the stove. Though I’m not rushing THAT! But warm days, cool nights, that great crispness in the air that only fall brings, the oranges and reds… yeah, part of me wants to scream “End of summer — Yay!” too.

    And don’t even get me started on my fab fall wardrobe. Sorry. Girl. ;P

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    1. I wouldn’t call what I have a “wardrobe” but there are things that I only get to wear in the fall and a few days in the spring. I didn’t buy them new, but I look forward to wearing them. I know it means that winter is coming, and our winter last year was awful, but I’m going to enjoy fall. Thanks for the comment Wendy.

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