Four Oregon Seasons.

This is a picture of a neighborhood in my town.

It seems each year I am more appreciative of the ebb and flow seasons give to life. I couldn’t imagine living somewhere without green, without color, without change, without rain. I am an Oregonian born and bred. My lineage in this state goes back three or four generations on either side. I’ve not strayed far from my roots, but even when living in Seattle for four years (and those of you non-Pacific Northwesterners I’m sure consider Portland and Seattle to be right next door), I missed my Oregon summers (warm nights! heat after July!) and the brilliant colors of autumn that are just a bit muted in the Emerald City.

When we lived at the coast and regularly drove Highway 6 back to civilization we were often enamored with the breathtaking beauty that is the coast range as the leaves begin to turn. If you haven’t seen Oregon strut it’s stuff yet, I highly highly recommend making the drive. Yearly.

And then I will admit that we have failed to fit a fall beach trip in for two years now. Such is life.

I said this year on Twitter that summer is my nourishment, but fall is my indulgence. What I mean by this is that I need summer–without stocking up on sunshine and fresh air I would struggle to make it through the year. But it’s fall that makes my heart sing. Fall is my decadence, my dessert. Fall is cozy and luxurious. Fall is sweaters and slippers; it’s rain before you’re sick of it and sunny afternoons like sprinkles on top.

And then there’s winter and spring. These seasons can by trying in the Northwest (I’d like a good snow or two each year, please), but that’s a little like life, isn’t it? Their dreariness makes the sun seem that much brighter, and when spring drags her heels we all appreciate summer that much more.

I would also add that even after just six months of eating predominately fresh, local foods I can tell that such a practice will only increase associations with, and appreciation of, each season.

I’m thankful for the four seasons we experience in Oregon. I’m thankful for the beauty they provide, for the fashion they foster (I love the first sweater of fall like I love the first chilly evening that calls for gloves and a scarf like I love the first spring day that warrants just a t-shirt like I love when I can finally sunbathe in the backyard again) and for the memories they hold. Most of all I’m thankful for the example seasons set. The stages of life: the births, the deaths, the resurrections. The necessity of succumbing to it all and just enjoying the present.

This post is part of a month-long series detailing 25 Things I’m Thankful For.

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