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!

hello, dear autumn

images via pinterest

images via pinterest

Look at that palette, you guys. It's the picture definition of cozy.

I realize that September will not make it's beginning until Friday, but my heart has fully plunged into autumn.

We are having a darling friend over this evening and she loves this season as I do, so I'm making Irish stew and crusty bread for dinner with pumpkin cake for dessert. And we are going to light our fall candle and have delightful chats around our table and it shall be one of those nights where life just feels rather wonderful.

This week I will be sitting down and making our fall list. It's our happiest list to make each year. Anna Kate has to come to love autumn as much as J and I and I was so full of pride when, the other day, she exclaimed, "Mommy! It's fall and we can carve pumpkins and make the pumpkin things I like and have cozy days!" as she rubbed her little hands together and one of her characteristic scrunchy nosed smiles filled up her face. And that is one of the biggest reasons that this season is my favorite.

If this pumpkin cake is a tasty as I am anticipating it to be then I will be sharing that recipe on the blog later this week. I have been giddy for the day when fall food scents would fill up the walls of our kitchen here in our new home. It needs all the spicy and comforting fragrances to add some character and some life into it. 

I've begun eyeing and pinning sweaters online and thinking through what are the wisest purchases to make for this fall/winter season as I am not my normal size, nor shall be until sometime in the new year. My sweet mama sent me a maternity cardigan sweater and a tunic top from Gap this past week and they are perfect helps to what has been my non-existent maternity cool weather collection. I told her the cardigan is going to be that one that I reach for especially in the last days of pregnancy and the first days of postpartum. Mama truly knows best. I also need to find a cozy pair of slippers. Do you all have a favorite pair of them? 

Always with the coming of fall my book list gets longer and I long for hours of time to sit with my warm beverage and my book. I'm hoping to crack open several bindings that I've been waiting to begin for months now, especially on the days where a nice autumn rain is falling outside. I'm hoping that November especially affords some afternoons with just such a scenario.

So many delights of anticipation, as Anne would say, exist with the arrival of fall.

I'm just so glad to see it come once again. It never ceases to just make life lovelier. 

"Life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall." -- F. Scott FItzgerald

fall bucket list

Though it dragged its feet getting here in, what in my mind, is a timely manner, fall has weaved its presence into all the corners and crevices of our October days. We've been able to turn the heat on, we've sat on our tiny deck with blankets and hot cider and books, and we've picked up the perfect carving pumpkins.

Though spring does carry with it that automatic sense of renewal and reflection, fall is where I find that to come even more naturally for me. There is just something about this season. I think it starts somewhat with how much I savor "cozy." I'd take rainy days, crisp blue sky and chilly breeze days, sweater-donning, light a fire, and read a book days over any other day. Days like those just have rest built in.  And this season carries with it such a natural presence of reflection with the changing colors, the all-the-way-to-your-toes sense of comfort, and Thanksgiving on the horizon. I love that about fall.

The Lord always uses this season to stir my heart in a unique way, and He's brought so many of my best gifts to me in the fall time. I think we all probably have a season that's like that for us; a season that holds some of our most treasured memories, a season that feels like one of our oldest and dearest friends just arrived for a long stay. I'm thankful for how fall is that way for me. And wasn't the Lord kind to give us such a variety of seasons? How generous of Him.

Because of what fall has held for us up until now (i.e. getting a puppy) some of our traditions have been put on hold until now. Plus, we get a little weird about the weather needing to be appropriate for many of them. So this upcoming month of November is going to be our especial Ode to Autumn, where-in we fill our days with all things fall-natured. Oh, happy month!

Fall Bucket List

carve pumpkins and watch a movie by their candlelight

eat popcorn and sip cider and play games

bake pumpkin donuts on a lazy Saturday morning

heart talks and crunchy leaf walks

evening reading on the deck snuggled in blankets

press leaves

light fall candles every day

watch the World Series 

college football game days with our people

work up our Thanksgiving menu and try something new

watch Anne of Green Gables

build our first fire and make s'mores

put together a fall-scape puzzle

hole up at a coffee shop for a few hours

write some notes to send via snail mail

order that record player I've been eyeing

start reading the next Little House book all together

eat soup and pumpkin bread and apple desserts

text fall wishes to dear friends

drink in all the sounds and feels and tastes of this season

think. dream. and be so very thankful.

What's on your fall bucket lists this last month of celebration, my friends? I hope this month is the loveliest kind of goodness for you.