It's Sunday.  The time changed at 2:00 a.m. today.  I hate when the time changes as I can't quite get into the swing of daylight savings time.  For the first month I find myself looking at the clock, especially when my body is getting weary close to bedtime or I am hungry, and think, "It's not really that time.  Really it's an hour later.  That's why I'm tired.  That's why I'm hungry."  Since I am pretty much a morning person, the fall behind time change is a blessing in the morning.  It gets light an hour earlier (Let's not talk about how I hate the evening getting dark earlier though!).  This morning I rolled out of bed at 6:45 am (just the day before it would have been 7:45).  I looked out my big four foot kitchen window at the wind lightly blowing.  I brewed a cup of southern pecan coffee in the Keurig as I watched light rolling across the sky.  There is now that combination of mid fall fading quickly into late fall toward Thanksgiving.  As I looked down the street there were trees that were barren, stark.  There were also trees that were still holding onto their thinning colored leaves.  People's flower pots were now emptied out.  Patio furniture was stacked or put inside for the coming winter months.  It was beginning to look like the countdown to Thanksgiving.  Late fall becomes increasingly unadorned in nature.  It pares itself back.  I pulled on my running pants and one of my husband's long sleeved running zip shirts, pulled my ear band down over my morning hair, double knotted my shoes, stretched good, pulled on my thin gloves and went out.  There was a coldness in the air and a breeze already at 7:30 a.m. telling me that it would be a windy day.  No one was out.  Just the way I like it.  I ran wishing everyday was like this - cool, quiet, no people out driving hurrying to get somewhere, no school buses.  I thought about Thanksgiving season and why I love this brisk and quickly becoming barren and stark time of year.   I thought about my family and how many years I have gotten choked up as I shared out loud before prayer how much they mean to me.  I thought about all the fond memories I have of extended family gatherings at Thanksgiving - my now deceased grandparents, the joy in the room, the familiarness that love and traditions bring, those special dishes that my grandmother used, her famous pineapple whip, the numerous homemade pies.   Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday.  Always has been.  It appeals to the simple, free, unadorned, basic, and connected-to-life way that I live.  The combination of the Midwestern scenery, the weather, the sky, the focus on just being with those we love (no gifts involved), limited decorations, the array of fall foods, the ability to simply think on all things that are blessings putting aside momentarily the things we don't like in our lives, literally fills me up.  Running today I passed houses with pumpkins and mums till on the porch withered from frost.  The last few Halloween decorations still adorned a few yards.  They though were starting to give precedence over to the next big decorating season - Christmas.  It made me love Thanksgiving all the more for its raw, peaceful, meaningful simplicity. 

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