"I'm so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers." Anne of Green Gables
We tend to walk child 3 to school, well I walk,the two youngest children scooter down and if child 4 isn't going to nursery we head back home for a drink, a spot of cake making and a quick tidy, hoover or hanging the washing on the line and then it is out again, we head out to the farm to visit the cows, the sheep, the horses and the tractors. It's fantastic up there at the moment there are two calves waiting to say hello in the barn and the tractors are always busy doing something, cutting back the hedgerows, harvesting some corn or preparing the fields for next years planting. The lane that takes us through the farm is edged with blackberry bushes laden with succulent berries waiting to be picked, if I remember a box we bring them home to make an apple and blackberry pie. The fields are so English, a patchwork of green that dips and lifts as far as the eye can see. Sometimes we head up in to the woods, exploring the undergrowth, hunting for monsters, owls and deer. More blackberries tempt us as do the occasional late wild raspberries. Weird and wonderful mushrooms encourage the hunt for fairies and other magical creatures. Of course there is the Secret Garden, a magical place that seems as if only we are the visitors. I let child 4 lead the way, he loves finding secret paths and steps that lead to adventures involving the climbing of trees, the wondering a of what animal lives in which hole, badgers, rabbits, foxes and moles are all present and the collecting of conkers and pine cones. I seem to always have a nature treasure or two in my pockets.
We rarely see other people, occasionally the farmer or a dog walker but that is it. It's just the two of us. Sometimes we wander quietly and we listen to the breeze whispering through the branches of trees whose leaves are now few and the ones left are hues of red, gold and amber. The leaves crunch under our feet reminding us to kick and jump in them. Birds chatter incessantly above, occasionally we will hear the cry of a peregrine falcon or buzzard. If we are really quiet we can hear the crickets chirruping in the long grasses.
October is such a magical time, the end of summer a lead up to winter and the end of another year. Soon we will be lighting the fire, hunting out winter coats, scarves and gloves and thinking about Christmas. Just now though we only need our wellies and occasionally a sweater, the sun is still warm through the middle of the day and as the leaves change, and nature readies herself for the cold months to come we have so much to explore and there is nothing better than revisiting some of my favourite places through the eyes of a three year old.