Fall in Montana feels a lot like Winter, where I come from. Today actually looks a lot less like this photo. It's still dark at 8:30 am, but I'm not sure there's going to be much light today anyway. There's snow creeping down the mountains and those mountains are awfully close. We know it's coming and it's coming soon.
It's not always easy to say goodbye to Summer - feeling the sun's warm rays on your skin, floating down the river, gorgeous flowers, fresh fruit - these things are medicine to us. But they'll come back, like they always do.
Fall is a time for gathering up - but I did my gathering weeks ago. I could feel this darkness coming; I could see it in the plants. Hawthorn was ready for harvest weeks ago; rose hips too. Goldenrod was very early this year - I suspect this means a long Winter. What's left has started to wither, leaves have turned, decay has set in. But they'll come back, like they always do.
Traditionally, Samhain marks the end of the harvest season; with a tale of how the faeries claim what's left of the harvest by pissing all over it. 🤣 Montana faeries are obviously overachievers and a bit early, but I'll gladly leave an offering of what's left in appreciation to the earth for the many gifts she gives us.
Medicines have been gathered. Offerings have been made.
Fall & Winter are a time for reflection; a time for introspection; a time for rest; and a time of preparation for the return of the light. Oddly enough, this is when I feel the most alive - I can feel a shift in the energy and my creativity sparks. I've got plans for new offerings and supplies headed my way for a fun new project. I've got my studies planned out (never [ever, ever] stop learning). I've got my warm slippers and my fuzzy sweaters. I've got my herbal teas. I've got my stack of books.
How do you prepare for the darker months? Is it still warm where you are or do you feel the shift too?