Friday, October 01, 2010

Welcome, October

It's the beginning of October, my favourite month in the year. I love the colours, the weather, even just the word 'October'. The wheel of the year is turning to longer evenings and colder weather, just right for reading and reflecting, and of course, drinking hot chocolate. It is time to cook again; soups and chilis, casseroles, roasted vegetables - all those things I avoid over the hot summer months. The colour of an October sky, the smell of leaf mould and cooler winds -- well, there is just so much I love about October.

But from the generic to the specific, here are a few Octoberish things I've been thinking about lately.

First: speaking of hot chocolate, I was almost the victim of a shell game perpetrated by hot chocolate manufacturers at the grocery store. Feeling virtuous and thinking we should buy the "light" hot chocolate packets (yes, the powdery mix, I am too lazy to make it from scratch half the time) we picked up a box and thought it was very light indeed. That is because the "light" hot chocolate is simply HALF AS MUCH mix in each packet. Same price. 28 grams vs. 13 grams. Hmmmm. Let's see, maybe I'll just buy the regular box and only use HALF the package, it will last twice as long! Sheesh.

But on to lovelier things. I am reading some Ray Bradbuy for my RIP Challenge, as is my habit, and I have awaiting me, very seasonally, his "October Country". Excellent! I've just finished off "The Illustrated Man" and I have to say, one of the stories creeped me out so much it gave me actual nightmares. Reviews of these story collections to come, sometime soon.

Also quite delicious for October is my coworker (and artist's) Hallowe'en Artist's Trick or Treat Studio Tour, running for the month of October. It is a collection of artists and crafters from all over North America who are participating in this event in support of Bat Conservation. Check them out.

Also in October is the return of Dewey's 24 Hour Readathon. This is the first time since its inception that I have not been working on the day of the Readathon, the spring or fall incarnations. So of course, I must take this opportunity to participate. I'm planning on reading for as many of the 24 hours as I can, and although I am never glad to have a terrible head cold, at least I have it now and not on the day of the readathon!

Related to Dewey's Readathon, I have decided that I'll read in support of the wonderful Toronto charity Literature for Life. Their mission statement reads as follows:

Literature for Life is committed to providing a supportive environment where, through reading, writing, and self-expression, at-risk teenage mothers develop a sense of self worth and acquire the knowledge and skills to live up to their full potential as individuals, parents and community members.

I'll place a link to their charitable donation page on Canada Helps in the sidebar for the entire month, if anyone would like to donate in a sort of sponsorship for the Readathon. Even if donating is not in the cards for you at this time, take a look at their website; it is a fascinating charity doing some great work. I am convinced of the power of the written word to facilitate wellness in all aspects of our lives, as evidenced by my own small business (Four Rooms Creative Self Care) and feel that Literature for Life is putting these kinds of notions into action powerfully and successfully.

I'm sure I'll think of more wonderful things about October as the month progresses, and will share them with you along with, as always, a few overdue reviews of some great books I've been reading.


  1. Such a mixed response when a story gives me nightmares: I'm awed and impressed, and resentful too! And now you have inspired me to go and make some hot chocolate: it feels like the perfect day for some of Cocoa Camino's bit-of-chili-in-it yumness.

  2. I love reading Bradbury for October, and the RIP Challenges! I last read The Illustrated Man in High School (LONG ago!), but I adored Something Wicked This Way Comes a few autumns ago.

    I'm looking forward to the read-a-thon, too. Determined to never compromise my schedule on that day, I am once again thwarted: I have my six week haircut, and a concert for my husband's birthday that evening, but I'll read as much as I can in between. ;)

  3. Buried in Print - I rarely have that result from stories...Ray Bradbury + cold medicine is a scary combination! ;)

    Bellezza - I loved Something Wicked This Way Comes. Bradbury is so perfect for the RIP.
    And I am SO looking forward to the readathon! I have my day cleared & hope to read as long as I possibly can. Good for you for trying to fit it all in amongst your day's events :)


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