I started noticing how climate change was affecting our area a few years ago. Some trees started losing their leaves and they began falling in August, and others held on to their leaves forever. And it’s several weeks into October and I’m only just now taking the air conditioners out of the windows, but I’ve had to turn the heat on as well. There doesn’t seem to be a whole lot of in-between, open the windows, jacket weather anymore. I planned on this being leaf week, but it’s hard to find pretty colored leaves, at least near our house. They’re either dead already or still green. Luckily there are some days off school this week, so we may have to go leaf hunting.
It’s so fun to watch the twins notice the seasonal changes. They definitely notice, although they’re a bit hazy on the timeline. October and Halloween and autumn are all smooshed together. And they think their birthdays come seconds after, even though it’s not until the end of October. The best part is the constant anticipation. They don’t know when things happen, but they know this is a time of year when lots of things are happening.
So… leaf week. Besides some collections and leaf identification, we have some new books in the book basket.
Red Leaf, Yellow Leaf by Lois Ehlert
Now It’s Fall by Lois Lenski
The Story of the Root Children by Sibylle von Offers
The Year at Maple Hill Farm by Alice and Martin Provensen
The Four Elements: Earth by Carme Sole Vendrell
Wonders of Nature by Jane Werner Watson
County Fair (A First Little House Book)
Around the Year by Elsa Beskow
A Forest of Stories: Magical Tree Tales from Around the World
And then we kept a couple of favorites from last week as well.
We’ll be (hopefully) watercolor painting tonight after dinner, and I plan to use Susan Coolidge’s poem I’ll Tell You ow the Leaves Came Down both to set the stage for painting as well as to transition into bedtime.
I’ll tell you how the leaves came down.
The great Tree to his children said,
“You’re getting sleepy, Yellow and Brown,
Yes, very sleepy, little Red;
It is quite time you went to bed.”
“Ah!” begged each silly, pouting leaf,
“Let us a little longer May;
Dear Father Tree, behold our grief,
‘Tis such a very pleasant day
We do not want to go away.”
So, just for one more merry day
To the great Tree the leaflets clung,
Frolicked and danced and had their way,
Upon the autumn breezes swung,
Whispering all their sports among,
“Perhaps the great Tree will forget
And let us stay until the spring
If we all beg and coax and fret.”
But the great Tree did no such thing;
He smiled to hear their whispering.
“Come, children all, to bed,” he cried;
And ere the leaves could urge their prayer
He shook his head, and far and wide,
Fluttering and rustling everywhere,
Down sped the leaflets through the air.
I saw them; on the ground they lay,
Golden and red, a huddled swarm,
Waiting till one from far away,
White bed-clothes heaped upon her arm,
Should come to wrap them safe and warm.
The great bare Tree looked down and smiled.
“Good-night, dear little leaves” he said;
And from below each sleepy child
Replied “Good-night,” and murmured,
“It is so nice to go to bed.”
Looking for more autumn leaf ideas? Be sure to check out my Autumn Pinterest board here.