October (in Black & White)

Each year after the autumn equinox I have developed a depressing case of Septemberitis.  Stage two, this year brought on by unrelenting 90 degree weather, Octoberitis.  It wells up deep from my Midwest-grown bones, and can be described as a homesickness for everything inherently autumn.  Facebook and Instagram pictures of leaves changing into brilliant colors and reports of cool nights spent under down comforters, all tempt me to make plans to move back East where the seasons are not one 70 degree blur and it rains more than once every six months.

“We’re all drinking pumpkin latte’s over here,” says my mom on the phone, unapologetically rubbing it in my face (she clearly wants us to move back).

As we harvested vegetables for the CSA Thursday, (and this may very well have had to do with end of a heat wave) for the very first time, I felt thankful for autumn, or lack there of, in Southern California.  We had one of our largest, single day harvests yet.  Nowhere else in the U.S. could we produce so much food in September and October, as the daylight grows shorter with each passing day. While everyone “else” pulls in green tomatoes before nights of frost to ripen in the window sills, and their squash a bit early to cure by the woodstove; our summer crops are at their peak.  The tomatillos are just starting to ripen, watermelon and cantaloupes are falling off the vine, cucumbers seem to appear out of thin air, and the chickens continue to lay more eggs than we’re able to sell.

I don’t know if I’ll ever be cured, but nevertheless, a glimpse into a very productive October in the Southwest:

{Meyer Lemons ripen}{Stockpiling winter reading}{Shep, loving over-ripe cucumbers and watermelon rinds}{Apple-chips for oatmeal and granola}{New bread recipe calls for lots of honey}{First tomatillo harvest}


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