Austin winters are different from Missouri. They feel like they are never actually coming. All my friends who aren't from Austin keep going on about how hot it is, how fall or winter will never come. But, after a few years here I have a new hope. Winter will come. Slowly but beautifully. This last week it has been quite cold. Below freezing, in the twenties. This is cold enough for me. We buy wood and start a fire and can drink warm drinks all day. It gets cold enough to need to feel warm. To bring the earth inside and watch the wood burn in the fireplace. I wake and start a fire first thing. Then I brew coffee, and I snuggle the kids while they watch a show. The younger two like to have their diapers changed right by the fire. It's warm and they like to watch the flames while they lay there. I huddle us all up like we live in such a cold and desperate time. But it's still Austin. Soon the sun will shine and we won't even need a sweater.
Maybe all of this is just an extended fall. The weather playing back and forth between hot and cold. The dirt is cold and the Texas sun is big and warm. A dying spring of sorts. Leaves fall and cripple under the weight of dropping temperatures but then comes the sun blaring through the bare trees. I never thought I could feel a bit obsessed with the weather, but it really does bring inner change. I have found myself wanting to slow down. To breath. There may not be snow on country roads, but hats and mittens on babies is enough trouble to stay home. For every day we run or go out to explore, the other half of me wants to sit and be still. Andrew crochets. I read and take baths. The girls ask to crochet and make scarfs out of a tangled web of yarn. Foster sits by the fire, raising things in his hand making me always wonder if he will throw that object into the flames. I am convinced God made the seasons just as he did the days. To move and grow and to become weary, and then to end and change just as we need it to, the bright light turning dark, or spring buds starting to bloom. The seasons carry me, and for now, we bring the earth inside when its cold and step out when the sun is shining.