Recipes for a Perfect Fall Day

I was worried about the fall this year, because our summer seemed so brief. And even though we’ve already had a few bouts of lake effect snow, I’ve had nothing to worry about. Our fall has been terrific, and we’ve savored several prototypical autumn days.

Back in mid-October, just after Meg winged her way back to Maui, we joined up with Jim, Jess, and Jackson to sample the local treats at Rennie Orchard. It’s a laid back kind of place where you can pick your own apples (and other fruits when in season) if you choose, and where kids are free to go wild in the small straw maze and other kid-sized structures. A smoky fire smouldered in a pit, giving me a place to warm up after meandering around the grounds. In all honesty, though, I was there for the cider. They do a blend of five apples plus pear (I think I’ve got that right), and it’s my favorite. We followed up our orchard time with a hike through Hickory Meadows – pretty little natural area just at the edge of Traverse City.

More recently, before the first snows arrived, several days of drama dominated our skies. The weather that came with them was gentle, but it pulled me outside multiple times just to oooh and aaah and search for rainbows. Last Tuesday it was so distracting that we piled into the car after lunch and went for a “Sunday drive” around Torch Lake. Alternating rain, hail, snow, and sunshine finally delivered the rainbow I knew was out there. And when we returned home, I was clear-headed enough I could actually focus and get some work done.

And as October winds down, yesterday might just be the most “fall” day of them all. Frost etched the lawn in the morning, but melted off in the early sun. Erith joined us for a trip to Short’s, where she enjoyed a pumpkin ale and I partook of some chestnut bisque. She and I carved pumpkins to the soundtrack from The Nightmare Before Christmas, and then we munched on roasted pumpkin seeds and homemade kettle corn. Lest we get too full, we popped over to the Skegemog swamp pathway for a brief hike where we disrobed cattails like all mature adults do. We rounded out the evening together with a scary movie (The Purge, which was good but would have been more impactful as a book). Before bed, I snuggled by the fire with my book and Tony laughed his way through Ghostbusters.

I wouldn’t dare to choose a favorite day – I love them all – but how ’bout you? Got any favorite fall festivities?


19 thoughts on “Recipes for a Perfect Fall Day

  1. I think my favorite fall festivity is following you around. I’ll tell you, but don’t tell anyone else, my carved pumpkins were never like yours! Yours is intricately beautiful; mine were, to put it mildly, crude. Sloppy. Sigh.


    • Carol I’m so glad you have fun traipsing alongside me 🙂
      My pumpkins mostly looked uncarved! I haven’t done many in the 13+ years since I moved out. I carved a cool one when we lived in Miami, and I think I’ve only carved one since. Last year I picked up some real-looking fake ones. I decided if I was going to put the effort in, I wanted to keep it. I think I’m going to build a collection 🙂

    • I recently roasted some turnips, and while I liked them okay, I think they’d make better lanterns 😉 For how short-lived they are, turnip lanterns don’t look to be worth the effort. They must grow bountifully!

        • I should have known better than to expect enlightenment from that article! Now I have no idea what I roasted, but I *think* it was actually a turnip. About the size of a large apple, light-colored with a hint of purple striae. The first day I roasted one it was pretty tasty, but I let another one sit on the counter and age a few more days and it was more bitter and cabbage-y. Rutabagas are commonly tossed into pasties here, but pasties aren’t common to my knowledge outside of northern Michigan and perhaps Wisconsin. But I think a rutabaga tastes more like a potato than a turnip. Sheesh! 😉

      • Isn’t it funny how we sometimes need to sit on a photo before we can actually see it and know how to present it. Sometimes I need to get it up immediately – sometimes weeks.

        • It is interesting. I sometimes can’t wait to get home and get the photos off the camera and out to the world. Sometimes I know I’ve gotten good images, but I let them marinade. I still have a few aurora photos and some star trails that are just waiting for their debut.

    • Charlie your kind comment just lights up my rainy day! I, too grew up in rural America, a farmer’s daughter. Early darkness and the smells of fall bring back all kinds of nostalgia for me. I’m glad my photos pulled forth some good moments for you, too.

    • Wish I had some of that cider right now! Will settle happily for the amazing compliment. I’m thinking of setting up some kind of print page, but I haven’t decided at all how I’d like to pursue it. Thanks for the nudge though 🙂

  2. Pingback: Trail Time | Adventures in Michigan's Up North

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