Towering Pines Blog

Happy Halloween!

October-Cabin 12

Happy Halloween from Cabin 12!

The colors have changed. There’s a bite in the air and the days are shorter. Much shorter. I remember being annoyed with the sun at 5 am for waking me up, but soon enough we’ll look back on those days with disbelief. Even though I’ve lived through the moving of the seasons twenty-nine times before, it still strikes me as strange just how much and how quickly everything changes. It only gets more beautiful each time. FullSizeRender

Halloween is a delightful time and it strikes me as one of the only times when we openly celebrate things that make us uncomfortable as a society. People revel in the weird, the creepy, and the spooky. Maybe it’s because we all know it is just pretend, or maybe it’s something deeper than that. We see the light in comparison to the dark, we revel in the spooky to remind ourselves how lucky we are to not be afraid of the shadows.

For me, the fall is a time for family and reflection. When I’m not assembling my research for the coming year or grading papers, I normally spend time up north with my family. My brothers and I take almost any excuse to get out in the woods, whether at camp or around the Milwaukee area. We hunt and harvest and we enjoy the changing leaves with loved ones.

Who has seen the Climax Forest and didnt leave a piece of their heart there?

Who has seen the Climax Forest and didn’t leave a piece of their heart there?

I’m not physically in Wisconsin, at the moment. I’m abroad, spending time with other loved ones and building research, but even as I look out on the colorful mountains of Nagano and the wackiness of Tokyo, I think of my home in Wisconsin. I had to ask my brother to take these beautiful pictures on my behalf, but I see those vibrant forests and towering pines when I close my eyes.

I know I’m not the only one either!

We celebrate things that make us uneasy at this time of the year and it also reminds us of the things that bring us comfort: whether it’s family or fresh air or changing colors on the trees. For me, all these things remind me of camp.

Hey, that’s another place where we celebrate the weird, isn’t it? And we also challenge our kids to go outside their comfort zone. That’s how they grow, so long as they know they can always come back to what keeps them safe. Halloween makes scary fun because there’s a kid at play under even the most hideous Halloween mask (don’t test that theory, please).

So get out there, have fun, and be safe. If things ever get too scary, you can think back to those summer days when the daylight comes earlier than you’d like. In the meantime, I’ll savor the twilight and falling leaves. It’ll be summer again before we know it. Happy Halloween!

I swear, there is nothing but kids at play in this picture. Even if they look a bit scary.

  I swear, there is nothing but kids at play in this picture. Even if they look a bit scary.