The change has been subtle, but I feel it; it’s in the early mornings and the late evenings now. There is an edge to the coolness that wasn’t there a week ago. More misty mornings. Shorter days.

Summer always seems so fleeting when the shift towards autumn begins, when we are far enough in that I can peer over my shoulder at whole months gone by, and close enough to the next season that the energy of it is tangible. Vermont offers a gift this way, since when we travel back to Pennsylvania, summer will still have a soggy, sweaty grip awhile longer. I appreciate the glimpse, the taste that offers itself a bit earlier here and reassures me of the rhythm of things in the places that I call home.

This morning, I allow myself a moment of grief alongside joy as I prepare to release the time we have here and return to whatever awaits in the next nine months.

Then the sun burns through the fog and our last weeks continue, steady and sure, with days full of smiles, laughter, endless woodland adventures, sandy toes and chilly swims in the pond, always ending sun kissed (well, occasionally rain shower drenched) and happily exhausted.

Today, I’ll savor those things a bit longer, letting them be bigger than the day’s challenges, holding them close and willing them to leave their mark, so that in the depths of winter when the pangs of homesickness for this time and place tug at my heart, the memories can offer their special brand of comfort, and the reassurance that summer will come around again.

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