A running flame

Eric sent me this photo taken near his home in the north Georgia mountains, October 2011.

Eric sent me this photo taken near his home in the north Georgia mountains, October 2011.

“Autumn burned brightly, a running flame through the mountains, a torch flung to the trees.”Faith Baldwin

If you live in the northern hemisphere, I hope you are close enough to visit some area where the torch of autumn is lighting up the forests.Β  Not all of us live near mountains, but anywhere there are deciduous trees, we may be able to see the spectacular colors that are only seen in nature.Β  Let’s rejoice at the beauty, as the crisp exhilaration of fall lights up the days and weeks to come.

One year ago today:

Bright and intense and beautiful



  1. raynard

    Julia I m have to visit one of these close by state parks. other than that the leave on my job fall off the trees and get cleaned up quickly.Friday turned out to be” the 2nd time this year i messed up baking a cake I did bake another. It turned out better. Never bake when you are tired. I even forgot to take a picture. At the church potluck yesterday, it was ” get, got going gone, ” good” lol. By the way it was a orange velet cake with maple frosting topped with bacon bits.Might do another cake today. possible a spice cake. be blessed

    • Raynard, sorry you had a do-over on the cake, but it sounds like it came out good the second time. Yum, orange velvet with maple! Spice cake sounds good too. You are braver than I am; I don’t think I would even try baking when I was tired. I know you are probably too busy to get away to a park for some good views of the foliage, but maybe you can catch sight of a few on your way to New Jersey – do you drive on the turnpike? Jeff hates paying those tolls. Hope you have a good week ahead this week.

    • Sounds like the eventual success was worth it, but for me, I’ve learned that some days I might serve the world better by just getting some sleep!

      • Susan, your comment is very timely – today was one of those days for me. I’ve slept more in the past 24 hours than I do in some 48-hour stretches! My aching back was an excuse to take it easy today. “Excuse” being the operative word – it’s really more like L-A-Z-Y !

  2. Beautiful! I used to live in Decatur, Georgia, from 1960 to 1970. We moved away from there when I was 10. πŸ™‚

    • Really? I grew up in East Point! Our son now lives in Decatur where he is finishing up his doctorate at Emory. His wife is from Kansas City but she moved to Decatur not long after Drew did. I love the Atlanta area. My parents live in Fayetteville now.

      • Wow! It truly is a small world after all! πŸ˜‰ I haven’t been to Georgia since 1990 and will probably never make it back there again. I am not in contact with any of my dad’s family any more so if we ever went, it would be for sight-seeing only.

        • You would not believe how much it has changed; how much bigger it is. Everything from the airport to the stadium to the skyline is torn down, rebuilt and unrecognizable from the days when we were kids. Sheila and I have talked here before about the old downtown Rich’s store and the Pink Pig, which is now back in updated form at Lenox square. Sooner or later there will probably be development all the way between Chattanooga and Atlanta — in fact, it may almost be that way now.

          • Oh I am sure I probably wouldn’t recognize my old neighborhood. However, I never went into Atlanta that I recall. I was only 10 when we moved from there.

            • Isn’t it amazing how we can live right outside a city and never really go into it? When we first moved here I imagined I’d go into DC all the time. In reality, life goes on and time gets away from us, and we spend most of our time in our immediate home environment. Not a totally bad thing, but I can’t help wishing I had more time just to goof off and explore.

  3. As you know, Julia, I am fortunate to live in one of those regions. And its nice to know I can just open my door to my deck and enjoy the beauty. Though I know there are laws prohibiting the burning of leaves, for a good reason, I still miss the aroma.

    • Alan, I keep thinking of getting one of those outdoor fireplaces so I can burn a few leaves. πŸ˜€ The laws around here permit burning them as long as they are well contained. I used to have an outdoor cast iron fire pit which I used mostly to burn wood that we were clearing from our “lower 40” – I enjoyed the warmth and smell on the crisp autumn nights, and we don’t have a wood burning fireplace in our home, only a gas one. Mama and Daddy always kept a roaring fire going indoors at their hearth during the winters, and they still do. Sitting by their fireplace is one of my favorite activities. I bought a candle that supposedly smells like wood smoke, but it’s not the same as the real thing!

      • I still can get a whiff when a rebel supercedes the law.

        • Hee-hee, not that I would ever be that rebel — but I’d enjoy having someone else take the risk, as long as no fires resulted.

  4. What a beautiful setting in Eric’s photo. I’ve always loved reflections in water. Thank you for sharing such beauty that is captured in the serene fall scenery. πŸ™‚

    • Thank you Sheila, I’m glad you like it!

  5. Rejoice, indeed. Gorgeous photo from your friend.

    • Thanks Alys. I love photos of reflections in the water.

      • Me too.

        • πŸ™‚ Great minds think alike, hee-hee.

      • They have a certain peace about them.

        • I think it’s the stillness of the water – it’s like a contagious form of calm.

  6. LB

    so lovely!

    • Thank you. Since I didn’t take the photo, I can say I think it’s lovely too.

  7. Michael

    Here the Staghorn sumacs are turning a brilliant crimson. Also the falling leaves of the Katsura trees smell like burnt sugar and cinnamon. But yesterday we broke seventy degrees in Seattle which was great.

    • Wow, burnt sugar and cinnamon sounds like a wonderful aroma. I’m surprised Bath and Body Works doesn’t get ahold of it for their next flavor of soap. I guess I am totally unacquainted with Katsura trees. I looked up the Staghorn sumac and the photos I saw reminded me a bit of the Hawaiian red ginger. Those leaves are gorgeous. There are some trees and shrubs nearby with dazzling bright red leaves – I want to take a photo to post and maybe someone can tell me what they are. I’d love to have some of the shrubs in our front yard at York but I haven’t seen as many of them there. Seventy degrees and fall foliage – who could ask for more?

  8. Michael

    Is the photo anywhere near Helen? Hope to get there on next trip out.

    • It’s not far at all as the crow flies, but those winding mountain roads make it longer. Sort of like when we used to drive from Vacaville to Napa – it was right next door but the roads didn’t go directly there. I’m guessing it’s somewhere between 90 minutes to two hours, but I could be wrong. Helen used to be lovely. I hope it hasn’t become a tourist trap like Gatlinburg TN did.

  9. Michael

    It sounds like it may be a tourist trap not unlike our little town of Leavenworth, Wash. about two hours east of Seattle. Based on a Bavarian village- supposedly- it does get tourists galore with tons of little shops selling all kinds of Kitsch and of course- you guessed it- the annual Oktoberfest festival with sausages and beer galore. It is actually a fun place to visit.
    Beautiful photo and your oak trees must be gorgeous now. We have few of those. But we do have vine maples that are starting to turn.
    I will try and get a shot of our sumac. It is kind of windy now and may not last much longer.

    • There are apparently lots of these little Alpine-style villages scattered around the country. Some are more tourist-infested than others, though. We always loved Solvang, CA and even when it was busiest, never saw the massive crowds of people that are at Gatlinburg sometimes. I have heard Frankenmuth, Michigan is similar. Our trees here are just starting to turn, with the exception of the Cherry trees that have already dropped most of their leaves, red and gold. I’m not sure when the leaves are supposed to be at peak this year but I hope to have my camera ready!

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