Today is my least favorite day of the year - with only Dec 21, and its lack of sunlight, in competition. Tonight is the first hard freeze. We have lots of gardens - almost as much as we can squeeze on a third of an acre and still have room for the kids to run around. I'm always sad when the perennials go dormant and the annuals freeze. For me, that's more of a year-end than New Year's Eve, which may explain why we don't do much for New Years.
We spent the late afternoon putting clay pots in the crawl space, emptying out the rain barrels, and collecting all the clay, yard creatures. My husband took the fountain apart, and put Debby, the spitty hippo, back under the house. We won "Yard of the Season" a few years ago, and bought Debby with the gift certificate we got for Reba and Roses (one of our favorite garden stores, up in Hillsborough, NC).
Then I walked around and looked at the flowers for the last time. The impatience and nasturtiums still look so healthy, but they'll be dead in a few hours. I silently thanked them for a good garden year. My six year old and I went down to his garden, and he said goodbye to his vinca and argeratum. You can still get teary over these things when you're only six years old. On the way back up our small hill, he said that he wanted to get more of those pretty, fuzzy, purple flowers next year.
I made a mental note to make sure we do so.