This photo is from a recent trip to Waddesdon Manor, a National Trust property in Buckinghamshire. It was a lovely autumn day, t-shirt weather as you can see from the picture.
My relatively newfound love of autumn is a classic case of ‘You don’t know what you’ve got ’til it’s gone’.
I never paid much attention to autumn. It was a time of year when it began to get colder and darker. It was often wetter. The leaves fell off the trees. It was simply a transition from the glory of summer to the desolation of winter.
That was until we moved to New Zealand. There, most of the trees are evergreens. While in autumn (March to May just to confuse things more) it still became colder and darker, it simply looked just as green as summer – and as it does all year round.
So the leaves didn’t turn brown. Or yellow, red, orange. It was here that I finally realised that autumn in the UK was actually pretty glorious, an explosion of colour that heralds the onset of winter.
We lived in New Zealand for 4 years, but since we returned to the UK I have made it a point to take the time to pay attention to autumn. It’s a season to be celebrated as something magical, and the fleeting appearance of all the wonderful colours make it even more precious.
Because of my late appreciation for autumn, I have been at pains to encourage our daughter to see it this way from an early age too. This is backed up at school where the classroom autumn display sent many a child foraging for multi-coloured leaves and assorted autumn artefacts.
So when we’re out and about these months, I make sure to talk to her about all the colours, and how special they are because their appearance is so brief. How lucky we are to live somewhere that has autumn.
I often write about encouraging my daughter to revel in the range of colours there are in the world, not just pink as many girls are directed to. Autumn is a wonderful time to celebrate colours.