"Summer’s end cannot come fast enough for me" by: Jessica Shepard

   I know it doesn’t really matter about the weather because we live in a near-constant sauna-like state until late November – but, the first official day of fall is Sept. 22.
   Normally, that conjures up images of golden leaves, cooler temperatures, and less sunburn, right?
   I mean, according to movies and memes taken from locales that actually have four whole seasons and not just three and a half of summer-ish weather and one wintery mix.
   Next Monday is Labor Day for crying out loud – it’s the unofficial end of summer!
   I kind of wish that it would usher in a crisp little cold front and make venturing outside much more bearable.
   As it is, we’ve been under heat advisories off and on for the past two weeks with feel-like temperatures skimming close to or over 110 degrees!
   Don’t get me wrong, I pretty much think anything above 75 degrees is too hot and should be illegal, but I’m also not a fan of near-freezing temps either.
   If the weather could be in the 30-75 range for the year, I’d definitely be a happier camper.
   I’m even open to dealing with snow and having a real winter wonderland experience every year.
   At the very least, I wish I could shorten Hurricane season to end on the first day of fall.
   Still outside of all of that, we’re currently trying to coordinate a little family get-together this weekend with my siblings in attendance.
   Mom’s considering a barbecue, time spent poolside and maybe a movie adventure if we can all agree on what to see.
   I mean, I’d like to think that most of that would happen regardless if they show up or not, but, I’ve been wrong before.
   Either way, we’ll probably at least manage the barbecue and hang out in the pool if it’s just me and the parental units.
   We’re also keeping with tradition and working on decorating our mantels for fall/Halloween this weekend and that features a lot of dusting and possibly washing the glass pumpkins again this year.
   I’m trying to convince mom to let me break out my black artificial Halloween tree to decorate this year, but, she’s not having much of it right now.
   Maybe it’s too early for her, but I’m more than willing to handle the fluffing and decorating on my own.
   Heck, I’d even attempt scaling the ladder to get the box down from the attic myself if it wasn’t so rickety and not built with plus size comfort or safety in mind.
   Naturally, it all just depends on if my siblings can get off work on time and make it home in a reasonable time frame.
   If not, that just means more work and brisket for me!
   And I’m pretty much alright with that as long as mom lets me trim and season the brisket before she smokes it.
   Even then, that’s traditionally what happens because a lot of those briskets that go on sale are fatty and there’s only so much that cooks down on the pit.
   Plus, I’m just better with seasonings and rubbing spices than she is – though she has apparently tamed the grill and can make the most of it.      

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