The holidays have taken their toll. The lefse is eaten, the peanut brittle jar holds more brittle than nuts, and I’m terrified to step on the bathroom scale. The Christmas tree tilts in a southerly direction and, no longer anchored by gifts, fell into my lap the other night.
When it comes to decorating for Christmas, nature can humble your best efforts. As my wife and I struggle to find the proper balance between lights and ornaments on our tree, the Driftless Wisconsin landscape outside our window manages to put on a display without having to rummage through cardboard boxes for more tinsel.
Boris, our family cat, has a hard time abandoning summer’s carefree routines for winter’s more cautious approach. Accustomed to spending the evening outdoors, he now exits the back door and instantaneously reappears at the front door with a look of contempt that says, “why didn’t you tell me it was cold outside?”
As the holidays approach, history shows us how to celebrate. The Driftless Wisconsin topography provides a decorative backdrop while its historic venues lend their traditional settings to launch your holiday celebration.
Sometimes dining out has less to do with tickling the palate than changing the scenery. There are just so many angles you can view the vase on the kitchen table before needing a new outlook on life. Give me good food with a view and atmosphere and I’m a happy diner.
It’s not too late for a grand tour of Driftless Wisconsin parks. Late fall offers its own unique setting of subtle colors and invigorating weather, and there’s no better place to take in the show than a state or county park.
Perhaps the best of what Driftless Wisconsin has to offer can be found by getting lost. In a world of rush-hour traffic, urgent emails, political pollsters, and stressful workdays, it’s nice to lose your bearing for a few hours.
Nothing heralds the arrival of fall more majestically than the flight of geese accompanied by their forlorn call as they depart for winter grounds. The sound washes over an incandescent landscape that announces the season with its own pageantry of fall colors.
Fall has arrived and warm summer breezes have given way to a cool stillness, as if nature was holding its breath for the color extravaganza yet to come. Riley, our three-year-old golden retriever, and I hike up the logging road to the top of the bluff to greet fall’s arrival. Walking the thin edge between summer and fall fills me with anticipation of my favorite time of year.