The countdown is officially on when the end of August approaches. I look forward to Fall’s bounty of vegetables and the season’s unique beauty and charm, but parting with those sweet, summer outdoor-grill nights is always such sweet sorrow. After doing simple prep work in the kitchen, I sit out on the deck while the coals heat up, and I let my eyes wander the property, grazing my surroundings just as the horses do in the distance. Maggie the poodle prods back and forth, following on everyone’s heels, eager to be a part of the action (especially the part when the meat travels from the kitchen counter to the grill, to the plate, and quite often, to her mouth). For this simple meal: steak seasoned with fresh herbs, garlic, and ground pepper, a chicken breast seasoned with a dash of olive oil, basil, and cherry tomatoes, corn grilled in the shuck, summer squash drizzled with olive oil, and a beautiful big salad with fresh lettuce from the farm stand and home-grown tomatoes. We finish our plates while listening to the leaves sway and bristle against one another in the summer breeze. As the western sun hesitantly sets behind the barn in the grass fields, the coals are finally just right.