The weather is finally starting to cool off, and I for one could not be more pleased.

I am not a fan of summertime, because I truly find it hard to function in the heat and humidity of the south. I’ve read about people who move to places with a different climate or a different type of air and their health improves, and sometimes I think I’d like to try it.

I think the perfect place would be 65 degrees year round, but it would get cold enough at night to keep ants, fleas, ticks, mosquitoes and poisonous snakes away. Really I wouldn’t mind living in a much colder place, but I think  it would be a hard sell to my family.

I’m not going to kid myself though. I’ll probably never leave Alabama, and so I just have to make due with the few months of nice cool weather while they linger.

My dad told me the other day that we typically used to have a big freeze by this time of year. Of course, nowadays by the time 2 p.m. rolls around throughout the month of October I could still go swimming and not suffer much in the way of hypothermia.

I’ve been spending as much time as possible outside over the past few days, and there’s just something about being outside that is so much better than being inside.

One of my favorite things about fall is the way leaves swirl around behind the car after you run over them. I haven’t noticed that as much this year as I typically do. The thing I’ve been looking for is a change in color. It’s always nice when winter is ending and all of the grays and browns turn back to green. But by far the most beautiful time of year is when summer changes to fall. I know a lot of people enjoy the way the leaves change from green to yellow, red or orange, but I can’t help but feel that the fall foliage around here is sometimes lackluster. It’s just that a lot of stuff still looks pretty green right now to me. The most impressive things to me are the yellow goldenrod and the purple ironweed. I remember one year my parents’ field was just full of that and it was one of the prettiest sights I’ve ever seen.

The drop in temperature is sure going to allow me to get some projects started that have been put on the back burner. I guess my first big plan for fall is to take down all the trees on a fence row we have. In case you’re wondering, I tried out my little chainsaw and it worked gloriously. Taking down my first tree made me feel quite powerful. Is there anything I can’t do now, I wondered. It was only a little tree, but I’m not trying to win a trophy for cutting down the biggest tree.

I also want to build a chicken coop and pen, because I found a good deal on some chicken wire that I couldn’t pass up. I remember how much I used to love chickens, and the fall and winter will be a good time to work on something like that. Come spring maybe we will get some chickens.

And I want to use the trees I cut down to make the kids (and me) a little playhouse. I used to think I wanted to buy them one, but then I read in one of my Kathryn Tucker Windham books about how kids used to just go out and in the woods and build their own and I decided we might be better off using what we have and coming up with something on our own. We tried last year with some sticks. We never finished it, but the boy likes it and won’t let me take it down.

We can all go ahead and surmise that I will get none of that done. But it’s like I tell the kids … “Mama is just going to sit here and daydream for a minute.”

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