All of a sudden the temperatures have plummeted. After a swamp-like summer, the cool crisp air feels heaven sent. Last night we even lit our first fire in our fireplace. We are in that wonderful stage of the season where we can enjoy fires for ambiance and warmth yet aren't annoyed by the dirt and the constant hauling of wood into the house!
heralding a new school year, I love autumn. Something about the
changing leaves, apple pies and jumping into my pajamas right after
dinner because it's already dark just makes me happy. The absence of
humidity and relatively mild temperatures afford me few weather induced
"bad leg days."
My only complaint about being an amputee
in autumn lies with trying to navigate the nuts that, for whatever
reason, are lying an inch deep on just about every surface outside.
Acorns aren't much of an issue. They are typically fragile and are
squished underneath my prosthetic as I walk. My neighbors are beginning
to recognize the distinctive crunching sounds that follow me as I walk
through the neighborhood.
Unfortunately, our yard
hosts several hickory trees. Hickory nuts are not only large (about the
size of a golf ball) but also boast extremely hard shells. They are so strong
that they have been known to remain intact when run over by our car.
When I am unfortunate enough to step on a hickory nut with my
prosthetic, I quickly look like a cartoon character slipping on a bag of
Necessity is, indeed, the mother of
invention. I have convinced Robby and his friend Rowan that "harvesting"
hickory nuts is a lot of fun. Each morning before school, and again in
the afternoon, Robby fills buckets full of the hearty little hazards. I
have to give myself a maternal pat on the back because the obstacle has
been removed, and Robby was entertained at the same time!
the nuts fully dry (in about a month) we will spend another few days
whacking them with hammers. For a six year old boy, little is more
fulfilling than being asked to hit something with a hammer!
When the nuts are opened and the meats are removed, we'll bake our much
coveted hickory nut cookies for Mr. Bill. Since we don't have plans to
remove the trees, I'm pleased that I was able to devise a solution to my
nut obstacles that benefits everybody!