Tag Archives: Adirondacks

I Miss Fall

Fall is one of my favorite times of the year. I love the cool, crisp air, the glorious yellow, orange and red colors, and especially the tangy scent of wood smoke. I remember bobbing for apples, hunting for pumpkins to carve and decorating and handing out candy to trick-or-treaters for Halloween. I grew up in the northeast area of the U.S. and I guess it’s nostalgia that evokes these thoughts. I lived in a medium sized town, but my parents had a vacation cabin in the woods on a lake in northern New Jersey.

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Mom and Dad and I used to drive the family car up to the lake on weekends to rake leaves in October. I, of course, had to make my own huge pile, and then take a running leap into it. What a joy that was. When all the leaves were gathered, we burned them by the side of the road. It was hard work, but also a lot of fun. I miss the smell of those burning leaves. There’s nothing like it. Afterwards we’d sit by the fire in the cabin, drink fresh apple cider and reminisce.

My parents are gone now, the cabin’s been sold and I live in Florida, but those special memories live in my heart and always bring a smile to my face.

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Today, my sister, Joanie, who lives up in the Adirondacks, knowing my feelings about fall, sent me a few photos of the season from up there. Seeing them brought a whole host of happy thoughts of days gone by. Not only of my parents, but of happy times with her and her family. Thank you, Joanie!

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So after an unbelievably difficult week where just about everything that could have gone wrong, did, I’m sitting here in my office with a huge smile, grinning ear to ear, without a care.

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I hope some of you readers get the same lift I did by seeing these photos. Happy fall!!!!

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Christmas With My Sister For The Second Time by Coco Ihle

Joanie & Coco

Joanie & Coco

Next week I’ll be traveling to spend Christmas for the second time with my sister Joanie. Our first Christmas together was when we were in our fifties. We’d searched for one another for over fifty years after having been separated as small children, sent into foster care and later separately adopted.

Our reunion in 1994 was a fairy tale filled with exquisite joy and discovery. Two Christmases later we went to the Mall and sat on Santa’s knee for the first time together. Instead of asking for material possessions, we told him how grateful we were for the gift of each other. We’d missed many years of sharing this special holiday and many others, but we intended to make up for lost time. And we have.

My sister has two married daughters who have children of their own, so I have an extended family, something I thought I’d never have. Just think, I have two nieces with wonderful spouses, three great nieces and a great nephew, and I must not forget, even dogs and cats. I feel as though I should hum the tune to “A Partridge in a Pear Tree.” I’m sure the kids have grown quite a bit since I saw them last and I look forward to their hugs.

Joanie and her husband live in a Hansel and Gretel log cabin in a forest in the Adirondacks. It’s a magical place that looks like a scene from a Thomas Kincade painting. The warm glow of light shining through the windows onto the glistening snow outside. The sound of total silence, save the sighing of the pines in the breeze. The crisp smell of winter and stars brighter than I’ve ever seen them.

Inside the aroma of dinner, the chatter of family, the warm snugness of a throw over the legs in front of the fire, and prominent splashes of red make the rooms cozy and inviting. The glow of candlelight setting off the shining golden color of the logs as they climb up to the rafters of the cathedral ceiling. And the gentle sound of  Christmas carols floating down from the balcony.

All these memories I’ll be able to re-live soon, and I can’t wait!

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