I love sunny fall days like this: The quality of the sun's light is spectacular; The sky's blueness is crystal clear; the crispness of the air invigorates; the brilliance of the foliage is breathtaking; and last night's frost has a new blanket of leaves dancing dreamily earthward on gentle brisk breezes.
Back in my homeowner days, I would notice leaves piling up, but not the beauty. Instead I saw yard work that needed doing -- if not to satisfy my own clean-freak tendencies, then for the sense of superiority I got comparing my lawn to neighbors' whose properties didn't meet my standards.
These days, autumn is a great reminder that there is beauty to behold in every season of life. Sure, there are cloudy times and there's more darkness, but even those are necessary beats in the rhythm of life. If we take time to notice how the earth's cosmic wobble through the heavens shapes our days, we discover how intimately we are in it, and it in us.
And if that's too ethereal for you, try shuffling your feet through a patch of brightly colored leaves -- even better to jump in a big pile of them. May not seem ethereal, but I promise the result can be the same.