A New Kind of Autumn

It's fall but doesn't feel like fall. Not every day. Not yet.

Coming from the midwest I expect crisp, cool air, bright colors, crispy leaves, and the smell of woodsmoke in the air when I step out the door at night. As mornings get darker and days get shorter, I find my brain trying to reconcile what I'm experiencing with what I'm expecting.

It's not easy. Maybe I need to change my expectations.

What I'm finding in North Dallas is very different. We've had a few crisp days where I've pulled out the skinny jeans, boots, and hoodies. More and more days feel like summer or spring than fall, and I'm still trying to figure out where wearing shorts in autumn - in November - is supposed to fit in.

Last week, my Alma Mater's Alumni page on Facebook posted a series of photographs that capture fall in my hometown perfectly. Large trees covered in fiery red and orange, set with a backdrop of brick buildings and brick streets. 

It's idyllic in a way that feels like home - because it is home. It's the home that i return to for the holidays and to visit family.

Now, I'm having to adapt to a new kind of autumn. One where kids are in school and the days are growing shorter while the weather is still hot. This autumn we're getting record highs in Dallas. The kind of weather I couldn't imagine experiencing in Ohio or Kentucky. Sunday was in the 90s. Today - Wednesday? It's the 40s, raining, and feels ever so fall-like. 

It feels absurd. 

It feels lovely.

Today we saw colors on more trees than not and the next week the highs will top out in the 70s - a cooler-than-expected, yet much welcome stretch of weather. I cannot wait.

This is autumn in the land where the sky stretches for miles and is the richest blue of any sky I've ever experienced. It's ups and downs. Late colors and cool temperatures. Days where mornings call for hoodies and afternoons, tees. It's the light coming at a subtle angle, instead of harshly overhead as we walk to the park in the afternoon, and mornings crisp  It's pumpkins on display while the days alternate between hot and cool; summer and fall.

Autumn in North Texas is exactly what I make of it, as I take it all in. Storefronts smelling of pumpkin spice and holiday songs on as I shop. Hot coffee in the morning while I write and watch the sunrise, baby sleeping cosily in bed. 

Yes, friends, I do believe that in early November, it finally is starting to feel like fall.