10 Things I Love About October

It’s fall, or “pre-winter” if you live in Montana. It’s the season between broiling hot August/September and cold, snowy (and gray) months of winter. Fall is Montana is usually very short, so it’s important to sit back and appreciate it while it’s here. So, inspired by The Pioneer Woman’s list, here is my top 10 list:

1. Cooler days, cold nights.

Time to break out the long johns, Muck Boots and Carhartts. And sweaters. And scarves. And wool socks. And wool caps.

2. Changing leaves.

Montana is always beautiful but a Montana fall is really special as the leaves turn from lush green to golden yellow, orange and red. It’s a photographer’s dream and it makes those frosty mornings riding through the trees after a missing cow so much more enjoyable.

3. Shipping calves

We spend weeks moving and gathering cows and their calves, which are fat and shiny from a long summer of tall green grass. Time to bring them in, wean them from their mothers and send them onto the next phase in feeding the world. It can be a little sad saying goodbye to the animals you’ve worked so hard to keep happy and growing for the last 8 months. Sad, until you receive your…

4. Calf checks

For most ranchers, it’s their only paycheck of the year. While both nerve-racking and a huge relief, shipping your calves and getting paid by the pound for those babies is always a good thing, especially when you have been putting off paying some bills for a while now.

5. Pumpkins

It’s seems that everyone is pumpkin crazy this time of year. Pumpkinaholics everywhere. I like to have the actual pumpkin, whole and as a decoration on my front step. No pumpkin spice lattes, pumpkin pancakes with pumpkin spiced syrup, no pumpkin soup with pumpkins seed garnish. I like a regular ol’ pumpkin on my porch to greet everyone that come to our house and confirms that, yes, it is October. (Note: I have yet to get said pumpkin.)

6. Apples

This has been a great year for apples trees and our many apples tree have been packed with big juicy apples for weeks now. Unlike my pumpkin, I am absolutely okay with apples in everything I eat. Bring on the pie, cider, breads, muffins, cobblers, weird sweet savory soups, anything.

7. Football

Cowboy is addicted to football. There, I said it. He likes college football, NFL football. He likes football on Thursdays, Saturdays, Sundays, Mondays and any other day they happen to have football highlights on SportsCenter (which is everyday, in case you were wondering). The roof on our house was replaced and with it, the satellite dish for the TV. After learning that we would be without TV for two weeks before the new one was installed, I think he seriously contemplated moving back to town. In summary, he survived and has been on a football bender ever since.

8. Shopping

The best part about fall for me? Shopping for winter clothes, of course. A full day of nothing to do but shop and spend money and no Cowboy to lecture me. It was glorious. For those of you who can shop with your husband, good for you. I think shopping with mine would be a lot like hunting with a game warden. You’ll probably get something but it’s not nearly as much fun.

9. The Return to the Kitchen

I probably turned on my oven twice this summer. My motivation to cook anything more technical than a salad decreases as the temperature outdoors increases. This is likely another time Cowboy contemplates moving back to town. Soups, casseroles, roasts, oh my.

10. Goodbye Daylight Savings

C’mon November 3rd. I’m ready.

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