Fall Has Become My Favorite Time of Year
I love summer. Absolutely love it. I have always thought of myself as a summer kind of girl believing that the sunshine, the heat, the cookouts and the days
lounging in a pool followed by evenings relaxing on a deck couldn't be beat. However, it dawned on me recently as I was driving back from Columbus where I had just attended a special little boy's first birthday party that fall has become my favorite time of the year. Now don't get me wrong, I don't care for the falling temperatures as my office mates can attest. Jay Stoneking and I tease each other mercilessly on a daily basis over temperature - he likes it frigid, I like it toasty warm. What makes fall so special are the simple things in life that mean oh-so-much.
When most people I know think of fall, they think of football season. Football season has become a little more special to me because I now have the privilege of watching the son of one of my best friends play for my high school alma mater. His mom shared with me his excitement upon
learning he would be starting on defense as a sophomore. I was there for his first interception (of what I am sure will be many over the next few years) in the first game of the season and shared in his mom's tears of joy. So if you see me wandering around a Wheeling Central game with a player's picture button on my shirt, he's not my kid; he's just a kid who I am very proud of and who has become a part of my extended family. He has also helped salvage football season for me this year as my Mountaineers and Steelers seem to have forgotten how to play football.
Maybe a down year for the Mountaineers and Steelers is a good thing because
there are so many other things to experience in the fall. Well, maybe a down year in Morgantown and Pittsburgh isn't a good thing but I'm trying to find some positive in such horrible starts to the football season. Fall brings beautiful colors wherever you look -from the leaves turning brilliant shades of red, orange and yellow to porches decorated with pumpkins and mums, beauty is everywhere. There are wonderful festivals and fairs to enjoy each weekend. If you have never experienced Oglebayfest you have missed out. Held in Wheeling's Oglebay Park the first weekend of October every year, Oglebayfest is a celebration of fall food, art, crafts and history. Experience it once and you will want to make it an annual event.
Now back to that one-year-old's birthday party and the real reason fall has become my favorite time of the year: family. There is a saying that I have been seeing more and more often that cousins are your first best friends. Mine are more than that. To me (an only child), they are more like my sisters and brothers. Other than my furry baby girl whom I adopted at a shelter in November 2000 when she
was six weeks old (another reason to celebrate fall!), I have not been fortunate enough to have children of my own. What I do have are cousins who allow me to be a part of their lives and their precious babies' lives. While my cousins and I have mainly spring birthdays, this next generation of our family is comprised of mainly fall babies. Since August 30, we have celebrated a 5th
birthday and a 1st
birthday. In a few weeks there will be a 2nd
birthday to celebrate followed by a 3rd
birthday in December. The opportunity to spend time with these little ones and celebrate their special days is the main reason fall has become my favorite time of the year.
One of the reasons I moved back to Wheeling four years ago was to be able to see the now five-year-old more easily and more regularly. At the time, I only had that little red-haired princess to spoil (and to all those reading this who may know me and my family: yes - she really belongs to us even if she doesn't have the trademark dark hair and dark complexion). She has now been joined by her little sister and her two little boy cousins and I spend my fall enjoying time with them, thinking about what I'm going to get them for Christmas and being thankful that
they are a part of my life. Seeing the smiles on those children's faces and being on the receiving end of their hugs makes everything seem so much better. I too often let work and other obligations get in the way of what really matters in life: family and friends.
Family is not defined solely by blood or marriage. Family is defined by the people who are there for you unconditionally and for whom you would do anything, anytime, whether it is convenient for you or not. Family is defined by the people with whom you want to celebrate both the big and the small things in life. At Bordas & Bordas, the importance of family is celebrated and promoted on a daily basis. While the fall season may signal the impending end of the year for some, to me it is a time to celebrate family and the promise of future generations - whether it is in the smiling faces and squeals of young children at birthday parties or the first pick of what is sure to be a storied high school football career. Fall is a reminder that the simple things in life are the best things and has become my favorite time of the year.