IMG_5072 IMG_5073 IMG_5074 IMG_5075 IMG_5076 IMG_5077 IMG_5079 IMG_5080 IMG_5083It may only be the first week, but I have a sneaking suspicion that this may just be the most beautiful October I’ve ever experienced.

We joined our neighbors for breakfast at the community center this morning. Each Saturday the doors are opened for a potluck style breakfast, welcoming anyone to partake in exchange for a donation. Sometimes there are other children in attendance, but often our family is the youngest group there. Today, Swee went charging up the steps and blew into the room like a hurricane, stopping to grin at a row of grandpa types. Predictably, this had the desired effect, and her smile infected most everyone there. J isn’t much for the social stuff, but we both think it’s important for the girls to interact with their community in a safe space like this – to practice their manners and their conversation skills. I meant to snap a picture and forgot, but I love the way they have their refuse containers set up – compost, recycling, trash. We take our own travel mugs for coffee to help cut down on their trash and expenses.

Our library books were due today, so we walked from the community center up the hill to the library. It’s a tiny place. They’re only open three days a week, for a couple hours at a time, but they have a nicely stocked children’s collection and plenty of toys to keep the girls occupied for a little while. I signed up for a library card back in June when we were brand new to town and had to give the name of another Mount Vernon resident as a reference to do so. As you browse the books, you’ll often see a post-it note stuck to a cover with someone’s handwritten review, and there’s a gardener’s seed exchange next to the circulation desk.

Earlier this summer I was amazed to find that they don’t charge late fees or fines for overdue books. Instead, they’re running a collection for the food bank this month, billed as a “Can Due” fine forgiveness campaign, so we took a bag of groceries with us: Swee’s favorite Annie’s organic mac and cheese, good salad dressing, cake mix.

IMG_5069We’re hoping to move into our new place later this weekend. I’m told that the propane tank and the stove were installed yesterday, so it shouldn’t be long now. I’m glad, because it’s getting chilly, but I will miss the activity of living in town, and the view of the lake. The sunsets are magnificent.

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