"So what are you up to this weekend?" I texted my son, John.
I always like to know if he's having more fun than me in Indiana. And he usually is.
He told me they'd been to a small orchard for some apple picking, cider, and donuts.
I have been a little discombobulated this fall. Normally, I would have been to the orchard a few weeks back, searching for my favorite treasure of autumn...a perfect golden delicious apple!
Time to get busy.
We'd heard about the orchard from the folks at church, and it was time to check it out.
Apparently, the entire city of Chicago had the same thought at the same time.
This wasn't an orchard. This was a Disney-style theme park, complete with rides and attractions and mass merchandising as far as the eye could see. On one side of the road, apples and everything apple-related. On the other side of the road, pumpkins.
We wandered through a maze of shops...the popcorn room, the donut room, the cider room, the hard cider tasting room, the Christmas room.
I began to wonder...they do sell apples at this orchard, right?
And then, near the end of the trek, a row of farm stands with apples. And guess what? No Golden Delicious. Apparently, I'd come one week too soon. Regardless, we stood in a line forever and bought our cider and donuts to commemorate the experience.
The big business of agri-tourism is alive and thriving in the western hinterlands of Chicago.
Time to get back to the quieter pursuits of autumn, like long walks to wear energetic puppies out.
Too many thoughts swirling around that haven't had time to coalesce into a cohesive whole.
Like I said, discombobulated. My concern is that this muddled brain will miss out on the beauty of this fleeting season. I feel the urge to slow down these days long enough to hold them in my hands and examine their beauty. A perfect apple. A crimson leaf. A dimply pumpkin.
I need to take the time to do the things that refresh my soul.
A weekend crafting retreat spent with other women, immersed in their love and laughter.
A new bible study, begun at home, paired down to the essentials of Bible, book and journal.
Creating with needle and thread to fill my hours.
Simple, everyday things.
Lighting an autumn scented candle. Cooking soup. Escaping in a good book.
Quiet, solitary pursuits to soothe the muddled mind.