The days grow shorter but the landscape comes alive with a sense of strength and peace; almost vibrant in nature. Personally, I never understood one’s love and enjoyment of the season. To me, it always marked the end of summer sunshine, family BBQs, flip flops, sand castles and the beauty of flowers in full bloom. It marked the nearing of the cold, dark winter with its short days and long nights.

Fall was my Dad’s favorite time of year. He always took his holidays during the fall. I never understood this and always questioned him on it.  He would just laugh and declare his love of all things fall. It’s taken many years (well 54 to be exact) but I think at last I can finally proclaim my love of the season too. I finally see why he loved it so much: the palette of colours that paint our landscape from trees to farm fields and orchards, the crisp air, the sights and sounds of large flocks of birds gathering in preparation for migration.  Oh, and the flavors of fall; how they play with your senses:  fresh apple cider, delicious pumpkin pies, cranberry preserves, caramel apples, chai tea. Should I go on? So yes, this is my declaration, “I love all things autumn!”

I think Darrell and I are very blessed to live on Prince Edward Island. While the majority of tourists and seasonal home owners have returned to parts unknown, we can still explore its many wonders. On any given autumn day, one can walk the isolated beaches and listen to the waves crash against the red rocks that line the coast, watch the piping plovers as they weave in and out of waves in search of food, and the seals basking on the rocks with few cares in the world at that very moment.  Just a short drive in any direction, you will find a red dirt road; choose anyone for you can’t pick wrong! The drive will leave you in awe of the majestic trees beaming in full colour and the fields of sweeping red, where just a short few weeks ago blueberries were ripe for picking. The roads are endless and the discoveries are abundant.

It’s been a busy autumn for us thus far. We harvested our first PEI vegetable garden and were truly blessed (and surprised) by the bounty it produced. We preserved beets, cucumbers (even with the beetles threatening our crop…we prevailed), carrots, tomatoes; far more than enough to carry us through the winter.  And PEI has no shortage of fresh island grown fruit. We made jams and sauces from locally grown blueberries, cranberries, raspberries, strawberries, rhubarb and apples. Darrell has also taken an interest in learning about the many varieties of mushrooms that grow on the island; many mornings he is up with the rising of the sun, off foraging. He has certainly brought home some great finds. Thanksgiving found us  with so much to be thankful for. I’ve included a couple of our favorite fall recipes. I hope you will give them a try and enjoy them as much as we do. 

Cranberry Orange Marmalade

Sweet Pickled Carrots

 So whether you love or hate autumn, always remember, if you look hard enough you can find the beauty in practically anything!

“I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers!”  L.M. Montgomery