It happens every October: You step outside on a Autumn Sunday afternoon and you can’t believe it. Gone are the heat and humidity of summer, replaced by crisp, clear, clean air that fills your lungs in a way you haven’t felt in months. You really notice it, and you can’t help but smile.
You sigh, wishing you hadn’t made plans to clean the basement or watch football or finish up that project for work or?whatever you made plans to do. Your kids are little; not really old enough to realize the rarity of a perfect day, and anyway, they’re wrapped up in their video games or their doll houses or whatever indoor activities the TV commercials convinced them they couldn’t live without.
The first cool days of Autumn are like a tiny piece of perfect dessert-delicious but short-lived, gone before you’ve had your fill. In a month, the weather will be wet or cold or both, and you’ll have no choice-you’ll be left inside on Sunday afternoon, staring out the window with nostalgia for the good old days, like today, and wondering how you let them pass without taking advangtage. You may even try, a month from now, to recall what you did today, on this perfect day-will you be able to remember what it was that kept you from enjoying it?
Ask yourself-does the basement have to be cleaned today? It’s still early in the season-is your football game really that important? Would you rather finish that work project today, or enjoy a perfect afternoon with your family?
Think back on your own childhood. What are your happiest Autumn memories? Playing inside on a beautiful day, or outdoor activities with your family, which took advantage of the gorgeous weather?
Kids have long, but selective, memories. And a day like this is a chance to create some new memories.
It’s a perfect day for a drive through the countryside, searching for woods and hills with the myriad leaf colors of fall. Away from most cities, vegetable markets usually ply their wares along the roadsides; today could be the day to choose the perfect pumpkin for your Halloween jack o’ lantern.
Many cities and towns have autumn-themed festivals in October, from Harvest Homecomings to Oktoberfests. These festivals provide all kinds of activities for the whole family to enjoy, not to mention great food.
Is football too much a part of your Sunday to give up? Then, organize a touch-football game with your kids, their friends, and their parents. Have everyone bring some food, for a neighborhood cookout, afterwards.
Wind is usually a part of perfect autumn weather. Every kid loves to fly a kite. And every kid remembers the day Dad or Mom launched that first kite.
The easiest way to enjoy a perfect day is to take the family on a long walk. Whether you venture to a state park, with its scenic trails and educational facilities, or make a neighborhood trek, meeting new neighbors for the first time, it’s an opportunity for family exercise and bonding.
The basement will still be there, wating for you, if you wait until a rainy day to clean it, and today’s game probably won’t decide your team’s chances for the Super Bowl. But this perfect weather won’t last long, and you have the chance to create a lifelong memory for you and your family.
Breathe it in and enjoy it.