We usually think of that phrase around the first of December when hearing the song, “It’s Beginning to Look A Lot Like Christmas."

That’s when we see decorations going up, colored lights appearing, holiday music seems to be playing in every store, smells from favorite holiday recipes are filling the air, Christmas cards are being sent and received, and shoppers are rushing around trying to check off their gift lists. It’s always a busy time of the year.

But there are other times in the year that we can say the same thing. For instance, right now we can finally say, "It’s beginning to feel a lot like fall." With the last month being one of record high heat and especially dry weather, I think all of us were beginning to wonder if cooler temperatures would ever arrive. So far, we aren’t seeing much in the way of the trees and bushes turning beautiful colors yet, but I’m sure all of those are on their way.

We are seeing signs of fall in some decorations around town though. Store windows are starting to be decorated. Some homes around town are putting out pumpkins, scarecrows, corn stalks, hay bales, Halloween decorations, and beautiful mums to make us feel more like fall is finally here.

One new thing that is being done this year are the lamp posts around the courthouse square being decorated. It’s just another way of helping to spruce up our downtown area with something different. And I hope that everyone is enjoying the creativity and efforts being put forth by the different businesses and groups that are participating.

Anytime there are changes either in our nation, our state, our community, our families, or our personal lives, circumstances may make us wonder what is next. What will the next "it’s beginning to …" be like? Will we cave to physical problems? Will we become depressed and a recluse? Will we make sudden irreversible decisions that we may regret later? Will we go on a spending spree to try and replace our hurt? Will we start to drink or take numbing meds to fix the pain? Will we lash out at others?

Of course, not every "it’s beginning to …." will be negative. Many can be exciting and new experiences. A new job. A new home. A new adventure. A new baby. Each "new beginning" will be different. It’s how we handle them that makes the difference. If it’s negative, ask for help and refuse to become a victim. If it’s positive, rejoice, enjoy, and share with others. We are all here for an intended purpose, so let’s make the best of each and every new beginning. And for right now, let’s look around and see that "It’s beginning to look like fall" and enjoy every minute.

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Audrey B. Unruh is a local columnist, who can be reached at zwiebach@charter.net


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