October makes my heart do a fluttery thing. I wait for it. I count down to it. I cherish it. I pray for it to go by slowly. Don't get me wrong, I believe that a lot of the other months have good qualities too, but I think it's safe to say, October is my favorite. Here are some reasons why:
1. October is like the Gateway Arch .
The Gateway Arch in St. Louis, Missouri is the tallest monument in the the United States and part of the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial. It was finished in October of 1965 (coincidence? I think not.) and is known as the "Gateway to the West". It commemorates an era in which Americans, standing in St. Louis Missouri at the edge of "civilization", looked westward in anticipation of the opportunities and advancements they would find there.
So here we are, standing on the edge of October, and you know what? Looks pretty good going forward. I mean, we have Halloween (see #3) coming up, then a watershed of other great holidays that mean time with your family and friends, time off of work and school and, let's not forget, great food. Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year... all the holidays that get us through the cold months... well, thanks to October they get a nice little welcome.
Now, I'm not saying it doesn't take a little sacrifice. Louis and Clark didn't come through to the other side unscathed and you won't either... the holidays will probably suck up your savings and ruin your diet, but guess what? You'll love it the whole time.
Luckily, if you're standing in St. Louis in October, you can probably make Christmas in California. After that, I highly suggest making it a round trip... New Years in Boston is hard to beat.
Last New Years at Boston Common.
2. October means a weather adventure.
Alright, so this one might not apply to anyone reading this from Utah (hey, Morgan!) or Hawaii (Kylie!), but October in Northern California means fun weather. You can usually count on the mild beginnings of Fall. The days are still warm, but there is a crisp, cool breeze, the trees turn gorgeous colors and the night gets a little bite to it. All of that means breaking out the cute scarves and jackets, new fall boots and just enough hot cocoa and cuddling days to make your weeks a little brighter.
If you are lucky, you'll get a couple days of interruption from your surreal Autumn fantasy for a nice big storm! We had one this month and it provided the perfect opportunity for some first rate puddle jumping. So, you might have to start checking the weather report before you get dressed in the morning, but I'm a firm believer that variety is the spice of life.
Megan and I taking advantage
of a motorist's worst nightmare.
Modern Halloween is the most unique holiday of the year. It doesn't commemorate some historical event, it's not about religion and it doesn't really involve gifts. The rest of the holidays you spend huddled up with your own friends and family, which is great, but the only interaction you get with strangers is when you're at the store battling for the last can of cranberry sauce (oh, don't act like you wouldn't trip someone to get a Honey-Baked Ham). On Halloween you take your kids to the doors of complete strangers and ask for candy! To make it even better... they give it to you! How wild is that!? Halloween is one night a year that's all about community.
To take my point a little further, look at Halloween from a kid's point of view. For the major holidays we make them dress up in stiff fancy clothes, visit old people, and be extra careful not to get messy at the longest dinner of their young lives. Now, look at Halloween. It starts off with "You can be whatever you want." Fireman? Yes. Indian Princess? Yes. Sea Turtle? Why not? Then we throw in, "You get to stay up way past your bedtime and run around the neighborhood" and, of course, "You get to eat more candy tonight then you will get to cumulatively for the rest of the year." You want to see real holiday joy? Check out the smile on an eight year old with a sheet over his head and candy hands stickier than fly traps running around with his next door neighbor. Beat that Thanksgiving.*
I could go on and on (I haven't even started in on Homecoming), but I think you get the point. Bottom line: there are 10 day left in the best month this of this year. Don't waste 'em.
Counting down 'til the next October,
*Disclaimer: You may not share my sentiments about Halloween if you didn't have an awesome and Halloween-obsessed mother, like I did. If your mom didn't make every one of your intricate costumes (from circus performers with ponies to ears of corn) from scratch or bring in gigantic "Freaky Feast" Halloween lunches for your whole class (complete with jello brains and finger sandwiches) then you probably can't understand what I'm talking about.