This past Saturday marked the beginning of my favorite time of year, October 1 through January 1. I’m not sure when I decided this, but even since childhood I’ve had an affinity for the season.

October 1 marks the first day I play Christmas music. Mannheim Steamroller’s “Deck The Halls” is usually the first track. I’ll go through a number of their albums, and also play Vince Guaraldi’s A Charlie Brown Christmas. First thing this morning, as I was starting to make breakfast, was play my “Festivus” playlist off my iPhone. Loved it.

I love the colors of fall. I love the holidays, and a number of the foods and traditions associated with them. Yes, this does include Halloween.

I love looking forward to watching specific films like You’ve Got Mail, It’s A Wonderful Life and Scrooged.

I love following Husker football, and college football in general. I love October baseball…even if it is a crapshoot!

I love the conversations.

I love listening.

I love the sounds and smells.

I love the cool weather. I love wearing sweaters and hoodies. I love wearing layers.

I love the sun rising late and setting early.

I love reading. I love reading to the boys.

I love the first hard freeze and how it ends my seasonal allergies. (Relief!)

I love anticipating the first snowfall. I love being like a child again and watching out the window as the first snow does fall.

I love shoveling the first time. I love how neighbors help one another out with shoveling. I love how the boys like to help me out with it now, even if they just spread the snow around.

I love that twenty years ago, three of the most influential albums of my life were gaining traction within me.

I love being by a fire. I love drinking hot drinks, especially Caribou’s Hot Apple Blast.

I love watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade, even if I can’t recall one thing from it the moment I turn it off.

I love Thanksgiving turkey.

I love that Jana  and I started our relationship during this season eleven years ago.

I love that Jana loves this time of year as well.

I love Jana telling the story of our first Christmas morning together and how I was up early and ready to open gifts, and she wanted to sleep in.

I love how Jana and I have started to establish our own traditions with this season.

I love driving around neighborhoods, with the boys, and looking at “pumpkin lights” and then Christmas lights.

I love celebrating the birth of Jesus and grasping what that meant to humanity.

I love how Liam suggested we don’t need a Christmas tree, but should have our nativity in its place.

I love experiencing this time of year, and I love it even more with my family.

I love all this, and so much more.

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