A Very Autumn-ish List

With every entrance of fall comes our annual "meeting of the minds": the writing down of our fall plans. We take some time one afternoon or evening in early September & make our leaf-crunching, cider-sipping, pumpkin-carving list of all the autumnal delights we plan to enjoy.

Our list changes a bit with each year, especially with AK growing up & being able to lend her *almost* 6 year old little voice to the mix (which I rather love). But there are always the traditions that remain, the bits & pieces that, for us, are a integral part of making it fall.

And this year I have a new batch of sharpened colored pencils (which make me feel especially You've Got Mail-ish) & an empty journal to add a bit more creativity to our bullet list of ideas. There's something about seeing those reds & oranges spread across the page that give the words that make up that list a bit more life. It's the little things, right?

image via pinterest

image via pinterest

~ A Bucket List of Fall Things ~

collecting leaves on a walk through a park.

coffee shop runs for pumpkin, chai, and caramel flavored beverages.

picking apples at our favorite family farm.

a family photoshoot.

lighting pumpkin candles every single day.

making our "thankful" tree for November.

baking multiple loaves of pumpkin bread, with and without chunks of chocolate. 

multiple walks on our favorite trail in town. 

picking out new soup and stew recipes to try.

an evening of pumpkin carving and s'more making in the back yard.

game nights in the sunroom with candles lit, cider piping, and wool blankets spread out.

viewings of You've Got Mail and Anne of Green Gables.

rotating a sweet bowl with fillers from a variety of Target candy bags.

multiple trips to aforesaid family farm for pumpkin donuts, cheese, cider, and wine.

reading in the sunroom with the autumn breeze blowing through.

afternoons of more baking with AK while our soundtrack playlists serenade us.

Saturdays of college football and good food.

quiet times to think and be.

setting up baby boy's nursery and AK's big sister room.

visits from family and friends.

pumpkin donuts for breakfast.

buying pumpkins and mums for our front stoop.

re-reading Anne of Green Gables.

our family vacation to Rosemary Beach.

celebrating the birthdays of both my J and our AK.

walks in the evening in the crisp autumn air. 

recording our days and the happy moments and events that fill them. 

This list may be added to as the days go by, but already I think it's brimming with good things.....cozy things.....fall things. Sharing this season with my darlings is what makes these fall days what they are and each year, as AK grows up, there are more nuggets of happiness to be found.

I rather think next year I might just come undone when it's the F O U R of us and we are introducing little man to this most beloved season. I see it now: J carrying him on his shoulders through rows of apple trees, AK teaching him how to carve a pumpkin and handing him "his own" special leaves to hold, putting his little painted handprint on our thankful tree, and all of us just drinking him in as he's donned in his darling plaid shirt and his miniature-sized moccasin holding a piece of sugar-coated pumpkin donut in his chubby hand. Magic.

So tell me, sweet friends, what fills your fall bucket list? What are you favorite traditions, your most savored recipes, your go-to fall beverage? I'd love to know.

Have a gorgeous Tuesday!

pieces of our everyday || baseball

I grew up in a sports loving family. Football, hockey, golf, soccer, gymnastics, basketball, swimming, you name it, it was either played or watched in our household (not by me, mind you. my love of sports does not translate to any sort of talent). My youngest brother is a walking sports encyclopedia, I learned to love ESPN at a young age, and there's not a competitive bone in my family (note: massive sarcasm inserted here). 

Though we have an appreciation for all sports no love for any of them runs deeper than our love for baseball. Baseball takes the cake, every time. My dad grew up playing baseball, both my brothers played baseball, we went to countless games growing up, and once that glorious opening day came every April, the lights of baseball glowed on our tv screen many evenings. We have been faithful fans to our Texas Rangers for years, even after that sickening loss in the World Series a few years ago. In all honesty, I think that loss was partially for my entire family to learn not to hold onto a sport/sports team quite so tightly. ;) Even so, a Rangers fan first I was born and a Rangers fan first I will die. Baseball was a tradition in our home growing up and it remains a tradition in my home now. 

People have their complaints about baseball and I get it. Is it a little slow sometimes? Sure. However, that's one of the things I love about it. When you go to a game you get to not only watch the game, but to enjoy your time with the people you're with. The memories I have of afternoons & evenings at the ballpark include walking around the stadium with my family, chatting and laughing together, eating lemon chills and hot dogs, and always keeping an eye out for that home run ball. And now I get to enjoy that with my own little family. My husband did not have a love for baseball when we got married, but he now anticipates the season even more than I do (there was much celebrating in my family when he came to see the light). ;) And he is now faithfully instilling that love into our daughter's heart. We turned on the first ball game of the season a few weeks ago and she said, "oh, it's baseball! YES!" Much parental pride was felt.

All of this talk of baseball to say: times like last night are purely sweet to me. Watching a game with my husband, my little girl, my sis and her bf, eating ballpark food, watching the sun go down behind the stadium, hearing that familiar "play ball!" over the speakers, cheering hard for our team; times spent like this make for memories I'll cherish and memories that my little one will cherish. For years to come, whenever she hears that loud smack of a bat making contact with that red-stitched ball and sending it soaring over the back wall, she will remember nights like last night, pieces of her childhood, and the fun we shared as a family enjoying America's favorite pastime. It's a nostalgic game, there's no doubt about that. 

"Who says you can't be romantic about baseball?"