Last post in this mini-series! You survived my attempted bad jokes, my lack of a fashion sense, and my awesome begging on social media. As if I’m ever really going to be done with ANY of that. But, alas, we are here.

The first time that I posted this, I made a list about why I loved the fall. It had about eight things, but was really lacking depth. It stated things like the colors, the weather, and Halloween. This time, I want to take a different approach:

As I grew up, my birthday was the beginning of the leaves changing. If that wasn’t enough, I used to appreciate how much fall refreshed my spirit. I used to walk outside in September, and watch the leaves on my maple tree change everyday. My heart was always full knowing that this giant tree in yard could survive losing it’s gorgeous bright leaves, and come back year after year to give us shade. Just like we can go through change, but continue to grow. Like life isn’t so scary after all. I would get in my car and drive to work through a neighborhood that was lined with trees. As the weeks passed, the ground began to cover with crisp leaves. ¬†And when I wrote out that list the first time, I realized there was one thing missing: Fall reminds me of home. For most people, they think of Minnesota as “winter”, but for me, when I think of Minnesota at it’s absolute best, it’s in October. The weather is perfect, the colors are gorgeous, and everyone appreciates where we live. We complain all winter, struggle all spring, and continue to complain throughout the summer. Fall though, is our time to appreciate the foliage that covers most of the state, even if it only lasts for a very short amount of time.

Here I sit, in Lincoln, a week before my birthday. A week before the beginning of the start of Minnesota’s fall. Next Sunday I will turn 24. The last 23 birthdays have started with walking out of my house and watching the greens on the maple tree turn yellow. Next weekend I will look out my apartment window and see the green trees which are still going to be green. Summer was hot here, and it’s staying hotter for longer. Do not get me wrong, I will appreciate that in December, but right now I’m not. Right now, I want the cool breeze, the sweaters, scarves, and boots. I want the crispy leaves covering my car in the driveway, the overwhelming desire to smell like a bonfire, and the road side pumpkin patches to be in view. Sure, Lincoln is an adventure that I wouldn’t trade for the WORLD. But today, and next Sunday, and probably the next Sunday after that, I’m going to want to walk out the door and see that maple tree. The tree, in the season, in the place I called home.

That’s why I love fall. I love fall because fall is Minnesota. Fall is home. And while our lives are going to take us on an adventure, we are always going to appreciate the crisp days, the cold nights, and the colors of home.

Maybe I’m just a little bit homesick because I’m spending my first birthday away from home, but maybe I’m also just a little bit homesick for the season I love so much. Lincoln, the bar is set pretty high, please don’t let me down.

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