Sunday, May 27, 2018
One of America's Great Newspapers ~ Toledo, Ohio

Mary Alice Powell

Beautiful start to a new season

It was a beautiful picture this morning at 5 o'clock. A person with the right equipment could have shot a prize-winning picture of the full moon and its shimmering reflections on Posey Lake.

I don't ordinarily stand on the front porch and stare out over the lake before daybreak, but on this particular morning Digby decided to get up early. The cats agreed to the wake-up call, which left the four of us in a family pose, admiring the beautiful pumpkin moon and the silver frosting on the lake.

Then, it dawned on me that this was a harvest moon. Only in the fall are we afforded such a natural phenomenon of beauty to enjoy, if indeed we can enjoy it knowing the weather that lies ahead.

I am not yet ready to put away the lawn chairs and clean out the eavestroughs. There must be more good weather on the horizon, because the leaves on the ground are only a sampling of the total output, at least at my house. When I look out the window, I see far more green leaves on the cottonwoods than colorful ones. Watching and waiting for them to turn and fall is like watching the infamous pot that never boils.

Remember the maple tree that sprouted and grew from one seed that fell into a clay pot? Now, it's 10 feet tall and the leaves once again have turned. I meant to have it transplanted in the spring. Now, it's a must.

I am ashamed how hard it has tried to survive in such meager conditions and how little care it has been given. Only Mother Nature knows how far the roots have crept under the garage floor and if chopping them will be the tree's demise when it is transplanted. I would like to take the maple tree with me when I move. Its beginning is a lesson in determination and survival.

It seems that everybody says fall is his or her favorite season. But that's what they said about spring, too. We heartlanders know how to adjust to each of the four seasons. I know the salmon-colored geraniums are close to giving up the ghost and the dock has to come out and be stored for the winter. But it seems too soon to prepare for cold and snow even though I admit that standing by the open oven door after the cookies were baked today did feel good.

I would like to leave the screen house up just a little longer and rearrange the rockers on the front porch to sit and read in the open air a few more times, even if a jacket and gloves are necessary. It is only logical that potential house buyers should see the place as it is in warm weather and not stripped of summer amenities. I hope they bypass the oil furnace. It is 34 years old and heats the house quickly and well, but fuel oil prices this winter probably will knock our boots off.

I still have a recipe to test on the outdoor grill but now, according to the calendar, it's the season to bake a traditional Indian pudding. I want to try out the device designed to upgrade the preparation of beer-can chicken. It's a vertical rack with a center metal circle where the beer can sits when a whole chicken is placed over it.

There seems to always be an entrepreneur to jump on a trend with a new product idea. We were doing just fine putting the beer can directly on the grid and hoping it didn't tip over as the chicken cooked. Now it's easier and safer with the special holder but not as much fun as the original method.

Fall eating and decorating traditions are fun and homespun. You can't beat ice cold cider with high carb greasy fried cakes on a chilly day.

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