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Last Updated: Sep 16, 2015 - 7:35:54 AM 

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Guest Column

Autumn in Florida?
By Elisabeth Falcone
Sep 16, 2015 - 7:34:06 AM

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Another year has churned beyond the half-way mark as Autumn makes its colorful entrance in the North. Human "snowbirds" delay their migration until the end of October after they have had a chance to witness the "changing of the leaves". They say, they can't live without the four seasons, but gladly skip the cold winters and move south.

Floridians have always known that September is the hottest time of the year. For months, the large concrete and asphalted spaces have been soaking up 90 to 100 degree- weather and now exhale that furnace-heat until November when the hurricane season is over.

Autumn in Florida? Is there such a thing? Yes, if you are in tune with nature and its subtle annual progression from one season to the next.

Although our eyes have not witnessed the brilliant reds, oranges and yellows of the falling leaves, our ears are becoming aware of the seasonal change when we hear a birdsong at the birdfeeder that we hadn't heard for a year. We're not the only ones. The Mockingbirds in our backyard echo the chirping or the melodious songs of migratory birds.

The sun lends another clue as it gradually casts cooling shadows onto the north side of the lawn. Plants and flowers perk up and crane their stems to receive the light that now shines on the south side of the house. Sunrises glide imperceptibly southward along the horizon behind palm trees that have shed their seedpods by summer's end.

Water flowing from our faucets has a refreshing touch of coolness as we wash our faces early in the morning. If we stand facing north in the brisk gusts of wind that often precede our violent thunder storms bred by intense heat, we may catch a whiff of the sharp, spicy scent of fallen leaves. But the brief chill of the storm and water on our face is an illusion and after it has passed, the sauna- like humidity returns, leaving our senses to discover more subtle cues to the Florida Fall season.

Elisabeth Falcone
Author of
"Mommy, Was Grandpa a Nazi?: Recipes for Tolerance and Understanding"

Balance and Harmony
By Elisabeth Falcone
Jul 29, 2015

We know that a balanced diet creates harmony in our body. We enjoy good health and are able to function well. Balance in all phases of our life seems to lead to a state of contentment that allows us to thrive physically and spiritually. Such a simple thing! For centuries healers, physicians and scientists have informed us about the causes of diseases and their remedies. Yet we often abuse our body and create disharmony -- or disease.

Food for Thought
By Elisabeth Falcone
Jul 10, 2015

If an entire people can be regarded as "awful" in the eyes of a child, what is the cause? No doubt bigotry is learned at an early age. Exposure to negative stereotyping determines the way children look at others. On their own they communicate and play together, regardless of their color or creed. Once they learn prejudice from misguided adults, they discover they can inflict pain by hurling racial epithets at each other. If they are lucky, they are cured of this "disease" through self-examination or by enlightened teachers who appear along their life's path.

Elisabeth Falcone was born in Germany and immigrated to the U.S. as a teen. She has traveled all over the world and speaks four languages fluently. Falcone, a retired teacher, now resides in Sunrise, Florida. For more information, visit

"Mommy, Was Grandpa a Nazi?: Recipes for Tolerance and Understanding"
By Elisabeth Falcone
Author House Corp
ISBN: 978-1-4969-2969-3
224 pages
Softcover $17
E-book $4

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