pumpkins and pine cones and warm woolen lattes

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Growing up in a climate where everyday, all year round, the weather was the same (I never watched the weather channel a day in my life–nor did anyone I know–until moving to the midwest), a visible change in the seasons is a novelty that still thrills me despite the fact that I’ve been living outside the desert for 8 years.  As a child, I assumed Vivaldi’s Four Seasons was his experience at one of the the hotels (Egyptian cotton probably felt damn good in the 1700s), not knowing what a “season” actually was, let alone that there were four.  So, when this time of year rolls around and the last bead of sweat drip-dries off August’s bald head, the rustling in my soul begins and I feel it:  her name is Fall.

Here are some ways I get into the Fall Season:

  • photograph (daily or weekly) leaves changing colors,
  • put together an autumn tablescape (mine is above). This year I styled basic elements by putting sand in martini classes with orange candles and using platters, saucers, or bowls filled with multicolored leaves, scented pine cones, or assorted mini squash, pumpkins, and corn (I got mine at Home Depot),
  • Pumpkin or pumpkin spice candles and potpourri (oh my!) with raffia string to finish them off,
  • Draw a hot bath with epsom salts,
  • Make a trip to a pumpkin patch to select your own pumpkins, sip some apple cider while you hay-ride away,
  • Start compiling lists of goals you accomplished this year and those left to do,
  • Blend a pumpkin or butternut squash soup,
  • Start to build your yearly scrapbook (whether in a scrapbook, journal, online, photo book, etc) of pictures you loved, videos capturing your essential self, events/trips/people to remember,
  • Refresh your list of books or magazines to read (and cross out those that have been finished),
  • Add a few new scarves or boots to your fall wardrobe,
  • Bake pumpkin muffins, or whip up pumpkin waffles or pancakes (with cinnamon whipped cream or toasted walnuts),
  • Place fall-themed wreaths, doormats, or plain ole’ pumpkins on your doorstep,
  • Brainstorm creative or homemade costumes (two years ago I was Brett Michaels with a simple hankerchief tied around my head and chlamydia cream in my back pocket (on loan from a friend)), and
  • (One of my favorites….) Indulge in a pumpkin soy spice latte at Starbucks (they only come around once a year) before, after, or during work to move the day along or to temporarily get lost…
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