Riva Capellari

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Located in Brookside in the heart of Kansas City

Lovely October

Lovely October

You know, I really love October. The quintessential autumn month. Full of crisp chilly mornings that turn into glorious sunny days, the play of swooshing leaves underfoot, visions of yellow, red and orange swirling above in the swaying branches, showing off one last time before winter strips them bare. Shorter days slow down my pace, ending my days sooner. Pulling the drapes together by dinnertime, I close out the darkening world, basking in the warm glow of lamplight that throws gauzy shadows around the room. I don my slippers and succumb to the comfort of my chair and the pages of a good book before the 6 o’clock news airs.

October is so full of color. Hauling out my seasonal attire, I fall in love all over again with the colors of autumn: the olive greens, the burnt oranges, the many shades of brown! I begin to wear my crazy socks to keep the chill from my toes (socks are a staple stocking fare at Christmas in our family). I pull out the sweaters and corduroy pants. I stock my pantry with beans and rice and grains for the oncoming culinary soup menu in all its hearty variety.

I myself am not a big holiday person, but I do love real pumpkins on my porch and vibrant mums wherever you look. Several years ago I vowed to hold off on any autumn décor until Ocotber 1st. Seduced by the displays everywhere right after Labor Day, I found myself tossing collapsed pumpkins (eaten away by squirrels), and disappointed by the now brown and dead mums 3 weeks before Halloween. My front porch bereft of any vestige of fall ornamentation. Delaying my purchases now has allowed me to enjoy these splendid wonders that come only this time of year.

October also revives sense filled memories of my family’s annual traditional trek to the Franklin Cider Mill where cider was made the old fashioned way, crushing the apples with large wooden planks, the juice flowing downward into vats, all in full view of visitors. And they made the best cider doughnuts ever. I can feel the cool damp of the old stone room where the “big wheel” churned water, their one time source of power. It may just have been for show, but I loved that old wooden wheel and the whooshing sound that echoed off the walls.

I luxuriate in the beauty and fullness of this time of year, an interlude between the sweltering humidity of summer and the white overlay of winter; the quiet before the holiday storm that stretches into the new year. And while I have generally struggled to find any delight in the months of January and February, this year I experience October as a gateway to the following season that brings with it its own set of values and attributes.

But alas…..October is a tough act to follow.

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