The Road to Thistlewood

Of all the seasons in all the world, I love fall the most.

There’s so much about fall that’s so right.

The hot chocolate.

The falling leaves.

The colors.

The winding roads.

If loving fall is wrong?

I don’t want to be right.



I mean I really like the other seasons.

I have a crush on winter.

There are its blustery days filled with soup and dinner by the fire and sledding and ice skating and Christmas…..glorious Christmas.

But somewhere around February I am so over winter.

I’m over the cold and the slush and the dirt and huddling by the fire and damp mittens and puddles of snow by the back door.

I’m arching my eyebrows and tapping my dancing feet with impatience.

Fall Leaves


And just when I don’t want to dance any more with winter…..spring comes along.


He is just so cute.

Spring with its green leaves and tiny shoots of flowers poking up through the soil and the wonderful smell of earth and all that is good and right with the world.

New and fresh and wonderful.

For a while.

And then I’m ready to move on.

I need a new dance partner.

I’m ready to leave the rain and the damp and the bluster and the hustle and bustle that is spring.

Kentucky Barn


I’m ready for summer.

Ready for warmth and sunny days and the lazy carefree moments when the hustle and bustle slows.

Ready for the beach and the ocean and fireflies dancing in the back pasture and the smell of hay that’s just been cut and freshly squeezed lemonade on the back porch.

Ready for simplicity and good books and days spent day dreaming.

And somewhere between the chapters of the book and the sips of lemonade…..

……my heart starts to yearn for fall.



I’m tired of Ashley and the Tarleton boys and all the others filling up my dance card.

I’m ready to dance with my favorite season of all.

I’m ready for that moment when you can smell fall in the air.  It tickles your nose and makes your heart race.

That first crisp cool fall day.


When you see the first leaf fall and you know that nature is getting ready to paint a brilliant masterpiece.

Amazing colors of every shade and hue burst forth around every bend.

Right now the road to Thistlewood is a glorious place to be.

I wish you could see it.


So if you happen to be in the neighborhood…..just stop at the mailbox and honk…..

…..I’m the one on the back porch wrapped in curtains dancing with Rhett 🙂

PS  Which season do you like to dance with?

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  1. Image for Heidi @ Decor & More Heidi @ Decor & More

    Heart this post, Kari! I'm ready to dance with Rhett -- still 80 degrees and flip flops here in GA, but next week... ahhhhh, some crisp days headed our way. I'll be on my back deck in a turtleneck and Uggs. :) xo Heidi

  2. Image for Beverly Beverly

    The Road to Thistlewood wears Autumn well. And, who can resist the dance of Rhett Scarlett. Spring is my Rhett, and my Scarlett is hurling the vase at him while wearing her pretty picnic dress. The only problem is that my real Rhett is an Autumn guy, so we dance in all seasons.

  3. Image for Lisa Lisa

    What beautiful images of where you live, Karianne! How lucky you are! Especially to be able to see and appreciate what is right in front of you….sometimes we are all so busy that we miss those lovely moments. Today amidst my tasks at hand I'll stop and breathe and enjoy pretty autumn for a few moments. Thank you for the reminder!

  4. Image for Sandy Sandy

    This is so well written. You express exactly what I've been feeling about summer getting long and ready for crisp fall weather. What I had never realized is that as much as I hate winter there is joy in the change and as winter gets long and slushy, summer can also just get hot and sticky and make us ready for a change. Here in the midwest it is too easy to focus on hanging on because we know that winter is too long.

  5. Image for Laura Laura

    Our fall here in Central Kentucky turned out to be spectacular (Thank goodness Rhett saved me a dance) I love fall and every other season, but I am usually over winter once January gets here. The road to Thistlewood is spectacular. Sounds like a best selling novel. Hugs, Laura

  6. Image for Susan Susan

    WOW! Such beauty! Living in Florida we never get to experience fall like you do. Every October I make my way back "home" to NY to spend a few days taking in the beauty of the reds, yellows, & oranges. I just spent 4 glorious days at a B&B relaxing and soaking up the scenery. It does my heart good and renews my spirit. Now I am back to shorts and flip flops. You are one lucky gal. Susan

  7. Image for Donnamae Donnamae

    I already know, that I will never look at the seasons the same way I used to!! I too, love dancing with autumn...then I like to get a little jig in with spring. But, seems like spring always takes such a long time getting to the dance.....enjoy your day!! ;)

  8. Image for Erin Kaven Erin Kaven

    Kari, great post!! great great post!! I am so missing the Carolinas right now (where i have to go to get my fall on) North Florida is just not doing it for me. The road to your home, fabulous. Remember what daddy O'hara said "It's land Katie Scarlett. It's the only thing that matters if you have even a drop of Irish blood." Ok, I'm taking liberties here, just assuming that you, like Scarlett and I, have at least a drop of the Irish. You must....always a lilt to the way you tell a story. Well, enjoy your fall for me, but watch the curtain rod shoulders. (Are you old enough to remember the Carol Burnett skit?)

  9. Image for Colleen Colleen

    Beautiful photos...I especially love the barn. Not much of a fall in Florida, but it is still my favorite. Great post yesterday..really love your writing style. Have a good one!

  10. Image for Jane Jane

    I guess we can be as fickle as Miss Scarlett when it comes to seasons!! Very well written and so imaginative! And so very true! When all the leaves have blown off the trees and the wind starts to whistle, I feel a little sad. Not so with the other seasons. Have a wonderful fall day! Your pictures are just spectacular! XO, Jane

  11. Image for Jackie A. Jackie A.

    Don't tempt me Kari, I'm also a Kentucky girl, I might just have to stop by ; ) Fall is definitely my favorite, tho as I get older I am more enamored of Spring because of it's youth. Beautiful pictures by RedBird Cottage. I will DEFinitely be stopping by there!

  12. Image for Penny @ The Comforts of Home & Flea Market Makeovers Penny @ The Comforts of Home & Flea Market Makeovers

    Your pictures are beautiful! I feel the same way you do about seasons. I love them all for what they are. I do love fall the best....or spring...or summer....maybe winter? :-)

  13. Image for Kim Kim

    Wow, it is pretty in your neck of the woods. Spring is my favorite season. It represents new life and me getting to work in the yard again.

  14. Image for Jackie Jackie

    Fall is my favorite, too. After hot, humid Georgia summers, I'm ready for crisp air, hot cocoa and the brilliance of leaf change. Your pictures are stunning!

  15. Image for Bliss Bliss

    I'm impressed it takes you till February to be over Winter. Maybe it is because you are so young and beautiful in ski pants. I'm over it the next day after 4 inches of the white stuff lands on my steps. Bliss

  16. Image for Kelly @ JAX does design Kelly @ JAX does design

    The road to Thistlewood is beautiful! I just love the vibrant fall colours :-) Although my favourite season is summer - going to the cottage every weekend, swimming, kayaking, sunlight till after 9:00PM... *sigh* It's a long time till summer gets here again! Wonderful paintings from Redbird Cottage Art - the cute hummingbird has caught my eye :-)

  17. Image for Leen Leen

    First, I am crushing on RedBird Cottage's art...a-maze-ing! Second, I am fickle. My favorite season is whatever season we are in at the time. My favorite flower is whatever is blooming now. When we go out of town, I always grab a real estate brochure because I want to live there (no matter where there is). fickle, I tell ya!

  18. Image for Anne Anne

    Redbird inspired one of my all-time favourite paintings! LOVE her art. Lovely post, as always. I adore the colours of fall, the long warm days and cool nights but as for winter- Come January 2nd I'm ready for spring!!! :)

  19. Image for Upscale Downhome Upscale Downhome

    The way you put your words and thoughts together inspires me--so well written. I love fall the best. It never seems that I'm ready for it to leave--really who says they can't wait until winter!? Not in Wisconsin for sure.

  20. Image for Heather @ new house, new home, new life Heather @ new house, new home, new life

    I'm with you.....fall is my Rhett Butler too. Oh I love spring after a dark Canadian winter. But am tired of the summer heat come August. Ready for those crisp September mornings and golden Octobers. I could never live in an area where there was no seasons like the tropics.

  21. Image for shirley@housepitalitydesigns shirley@housepitalitydesigns that was you on the porch...all wrapped all up in those burlap curtains...dancing...! Your "road to Thistle" is gorgeous...reminds me of mine...but our leaves are still not at full peak...I just love the Fall...the colors, the cool temps, the smell of the fallen leaves...I hate to go to the grocery store...but when the leaves are at its brilliance, I use every excuse to "take a drive".... Have a great day Miss Scarlett!!...

  22. Image for Pamela Pamela

    Spring and Fall are the seasons I love. When my family ran our dairy farm, I loved to watch the precious new calves jump and run in the new fresh green grass of spring. The fall was always welcomed because we had finished putting the hay up for the coming winter and the cool crisp days were such a welcomed relief after the hot humid summer.When you live on a farm, you have a different perspective of the seasons.

  23. Image for Cecilia Cecilia

    Oh Fall, definitely Fall. It comes slowly here - a teaser here and there with crisp mornings and Indian summer days then sometime in November it finally arrives full time. I love the leaves changing color (wish it were as spectacular as the northern part of the country! but it's still pretty), the relief from the heat and just everything about it. Winter here is pretty bland, Spring too short, and Summer, while fun, wears on you with the heat. Love the pictures you posted. So very pretty, all dressed in Fall's finery. :)

  24. Image for Shari @ Turnstyle Vogue Shari @ Turnstyle Vogue

    Beautiful pics. Fall is hands down my favorite. Not only do I love it in the present since I live among so much autumn beauty, but it brings back so many wonderful childhood memories of jumping in those big leaf piles I'd moan and groan about having to rake, standing by the big bonfire at our school football games, riding my bike on the back trails and doing a preliminary search in the mountains for our Christmas tree. Sigh....

  25. Image for Beth Beth

    Fall! No doubt. I always imagine it as how God sees us, trees look all the same with few variations to us but then in fall it is like God throws off the covers and reveals to us His absolute glory in all things. Including his design and care of a tree's clothing. He is so good, in every way and He can't wait to shine through us and reveal His glory in us.

  26. Image for katie goldsworthy katie goldsworthy

    I will just dance with your post, because of the your flow and wonderful vocab....and because being a lover of great writing makes me write strange things like that, (although fall is my favorite season also). I will say it again and again, you are an amazing writer! --Katie

  27. Image for Debbie Debbie

    Gorgeous photos...and I absolutely agree with you...would rather dance with Fall over any other season, as lovely as they all are in their own way. What a wonderful story to compliment your pictures! And Redbird Cottage Art does beautiful work! Debbie :)

  28. Image for andrea andrea

    my favorite dance partner most certainly is fall. Oh, how I adore this season! I am very saddened, however, that we had a big snow storm here and winter has more fall. We moved last year to a much colder part of the country and sadly, fall and spring are mere blinks in the seasons. A company in boston is wooing my hubby to work for them....hmmm, wonder if there are more distinct seasons in Boston? =)

  29. Image for Barb @ Grits and Glamour Barb @ Grits and Glamour

    I truly don't know what is prettier, all that Autumnal (I just love that word) beauty around Thistlewood Farm, or your poetic description. For the record..... I hope you did not grab those gorgeous burlap curtains. Although beautiful, all that dancing on the back porch may cause raw areas on your skin. :) Love you girl! You made my morning.

  30. Image for Regina Regina

    Reds, greens, golds, browns . . . they're my favorite. You wouldn't think so, but those colors spell PEACE for me. I grew up with two huge maple trees in the front yard - one a cheery red - but the biggest, and the one that makes my heart sing just to THINK about it, was the one that turned a brilliant, almost artificial-looking, YELLOW. We would wade through a foot of leaves when they finally fell. On a cloudy day, it was actually BRIGHTER because of that tree. Thanks for bringing this back to mind today!! I needed this! Yes, I'll dance with FALL any time. :)

    1. Image for Sandy Sandy

      We have a tree that turns bright yellow and you are so right it does make the day brighter. I have often walked up the stairs and seeing it through my son's windows think that the sun is shining in there.

  31. Image for Aunt Lou Aunt Lou

    Autumn, definitely! And since Autumn officially ends just as Christmas is in full swing, I am not desolated to change partners, but it is so sweet to fill my senses with his manly presence, again! :) Thanks for the metaphor. I'm more Melanie than Scarlett, with a disturbing amount of India thrown in, but I like it.

  32. Image for Paula Taylor Paula Taylor

    I adore Fall like you do! That was...amazing. Your writings make me smile and come back day after day with my own cup of coffee, just waiting to see what you will write next. This is my favorite time of year and how you expressed your love of it was perfection. Thank you for your words and inspiration. Making me smile, laugh, and even occasionally tear up. LOVE your blog and keep it up!

  33. Image for Jean Jean

    Our Fall is so short here in Montana that it's hard to get tired of it before Winter hits, but as far as all the other seasons go, I'm with ya...always ready to move on to the next one. I LOVE seasons. I truly missed them while living in GA and TX. On a completely different note, your writing reminds me of my husband' can take such a simple subject and make it truly interesting. Great job!

  34. Image for Cynthia Toone Riley Cynthia Toone Riley

    I just loved this post! You summed up so perfectly how wonderful each season is...and I too relish the Autumn days.

  35. Image for Kathysue Kathysue

    I loved this post and the thought of dancing with the seasons. I do love Fall with its crispness, but I am a die-hard Spring dancer!! Love everything about the Spring, the colors, the new beginnings, the perfect weather! You will find me dancing in the Spring in California! Kathysue

  36. Image for Linda Linda

    I ABSOLUTELY LOVE your post. You have phrased everything just so perfectly. Autumn is my favorite time of year and I, too, go through the periods of boredom and am ready to move onto the next season....except for autumn. I think I could truly live with this season all year. There are variations of days that you can still sit outdoors on the deck in the sunshine barefoot and then the sunny days that are a bit chilly where you can still enjoy the freshness of the outdoors wrapped in a sweater or blanket. Ironically, I was tickled at your reference to Scarlet & Rhett Butler as this was the 1st "grown up" book I read when I was about 13. I LOVED it, I became obsessed with the era and imagined what it would have been like to live then. I had a crush on Clark Gable. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts with such beauty!

  37. Image for Linda Adams Linda Adams

    Hi Karianne, Beautiful pictures and I can relate to your post about the seasons too. The older I get the harder it becomes to get through winter. I love Christmas after that I'm done. The road to Thistlewood looks like the roads around my house, gorgeous countryside. Joyous Wishes, Linda

  38. Image for Kerryanne @ Shabby Art Boutique Kerryanne @ Shabby Art Boutique

    Amazing fall colours. I'd want to take a million photos if I lived there Kari. The part of Australia that I live in is sub tropical... so our climate is temperate with little variation betwen the seasons. Our year round temperature varies between 20 - 32 degrees c (68 - 89 f). It doesn't get all that cold and we'd never see snow, but it can get very hot. I'd love to see Autumn trees like yours... they are beyond beautiful.

  39. Image for Gwen Gwen

    Fall means frost is on its way, give me spring-time any day. Winter blues, they suck me in. But, then my face is all upon the grin. For when the spring comes, oh-so sweet and winter's force lies at it's feet.

  40. Image for Jill Flory Jill Flory

    I like fall and I like spring. I pretty much detest winter but I LOVE summer. I think I was supposed to be born in a paradise that has no humidity but 80 degree temps year round.

  41. Image for Paula Romer Paula Romer

    Hello! I am a new reader after discovering you via Rhoda at Southern Hospitality. I thought your home tour was one of the most beautiful homes I've ever seen. I've enjoyed your blog ever since! Thanks for sharing your creative ideas, inspiration and delightful wit and sense of humor with us. I look forward to your daily posts. I loved your Scarlett/Rhett analogy. I think heaven will be a perpetual state of autumn-but with the leaves remaining on the trees. Looking forward to more posts from you.

  42. Image for Angie @ Beneath the Magnolias Angie @ Beneath the Magnolias

    Those pictures are gorgeous! I agree with the previous commenter. I absolutely can not stand winter, not even for a day. Fall is nice but don't like the impending cold weather. I would have to say I'm a spring and summer girl. Redbird Cottage Art is absolutely beautiful. I'm off to check them out.

  43. Image for Mrs. C Mrs. C

    Definitely a FALL girl here. It's always such a huge relief when the humidity breaks, the sky clears and we can once again enjoy the gorgeous outdoors without any sweat beading up on our foreheads. Our fall has been long and glorious so far, and we've been drinking in as much as we can! BTW your photos are just beautiful, enjoy your Rhett!

  44. Image for Tammie Gee Tammie Gee

    So beautiful. I just love fall but not excited about the winter to follow. I have to say Spring and Summer would be my seasons of choice:) love your pictures!!!

  45. Image for Sheila @sZinteriors Sheila @sZinteriors

    Your photos are fabulous, Karianne! I like to dance with fall the best, but like you, I'm usually so ready for a season change by the time the next one is due to roll around. This year though, I have to say, our summer took some time to kick in, so I was okay to hang onto it for a little longer than usual! :-)

  46. Image for Debbie Debbie

    Love your pictures...brings back lots of memories of when I was first married and moved to Kentucky. We are from Colorado but moved there when my husband was in the Army...stationed at Fort Campbell.. We lived in Hopkinsville. and I miss the land scape there. Yes there is nothing like the Rocky Mountains...but Kentucky just stayed with us and have been back many times in the last 25 years. I hope your town is as cute with southern charm as your house. When you talk about leaving the big town and simplifying life...if its not too personal...from where to where did you go? Did it involve finding new jobs, etc.? Did you stumble on that beautiful house or have it built? Thanks for all your inspiration.

  47. Image for tara tara

    fall is definitely who i prefer to dance with.... and you know I'm named after Tara Plantation, right? I've been reading that book since I was too young to's my favorite of all time...a girl after her mother's own heart.

  48. Image for Anne Anne

    Such a beautiful post! I really love the seasons but fall and Spring are my favorites! When they complete their circle! I just hate too much heat and too much cold! But your thoughtful post touched my heart today! So glad I stopped by. Come visit me soon. I have a double giveaway going on! It is always so much fun visiitng as may pinkies as I can! Hugs Anne

  49. Image for Rhonda Rhonda

    Ahhh.... Finding myself this morning in the balance between dusty autumn decorations and waiting boxes of Christmas ornaments... catching up on some blogs for inspiration, and I stumble upon this one that should have been read weeks earlier. Oh so beautiful! The breathtaking photographs, the poignant script made me homesick for my native Tennessee, as always happens in the fall, and long for a visit to Thistlewood. As a transplant in southwest sub-tropical Florida, I still haven't gotten accustomed to hearing Sleigh Ride and Winter Wonderland on the radio while driving in 82 degree weather, sun roof open and balmy breezes filling the car. And don't get me started on the plastic snow men starting to show up in the yards under the palms.... So thank you for transporting me back to the days of seasons (other than hurricane and tourist), and for these pleasant moments of reminiscence. And with the backdrop of water and swaying palms, I'm doing my own mental dance with Rhett on my own back porch with a few imaginary leaves crunching underfoot!

  50. Image for Rachel Rachel

    I am right there with yah sista! I live in Kentucky right now. Fall is fabulous!!! I am from Texas, which is pretty much hot and brown all year. Fall alone could keep me in this state for the rest of my life. My husband is prior military. We are trying to decide where to settle down, oh how I am ready to be settled. But where??? Everytime we think of moving back to Texas my heart aches a little, because I know I will miss the BEAUTIFUL fall colors of Kentucky.

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