Monday, October 16, 2023

Autumn Rituals

Elizabeth wrote a post over at her blog a few days ago, in which she listed some of her Autumn rituals. I enjoyed reading it so much that I thought I might share some of mine, as well.

Like Elizabeth, I am a decidedly seasonal soul, and of those autumn and winter are my favorites, hands down! They are simply the coziest, and while I strive to give our home a cozy feel all year round, there is just nothing like decorating for autumn and Christmas to warm things up.

Being a seasonal soul, there are a number of rituals and traditions that I keep, and that I look forward to all year long! Here are some of my favorites.

I enjoy cooking and baking year round, but there is nothing like an overcast, balmy autumn sky with grey pillowy clouds that sets my heart to make up something warm to eat! Our family simply loves chili, and just last week I made up a pot using a recipe I'd never tried before, Turkey Pumpkin White Bean Chili, and it was delicious! Definitely one that I will make again before the end of the season, and even into winter. I've never made anything but desserts with pumpkin, and I wasn't entirely convinced that you wouldn't be able to taste it, but if I hadn't made it myself I would have never known that pumpkin was one of the ingredients. It's a keeper!

Almost every year I make my pumpkin dip that I serve with store bought snickerdoodles.  I made up a bowl of it over the weekend and I'm still munching it. I halved the recipe, but it still made quite a bit and since I'm about the only one who eats it, I think next time I might need to make even less. I'll share the recipe here soon.

Not only do I love all the wonderful autumn meals and desserts that we enjoy this time of year, I also love the way they make the kitchen smell!  There is nothing better than a warm kitchen on a cool day and the smell of baked goods in the oven, or the sound of a pot of soup slowly simmering away on the stove! In my opinion, there are few better ways to spend a day!

I get so excited ever year when the calendar turns to September and I know it won't be long before it's time to bring out all my favorite clothes! I've managed to curate a wardrobe I like year round, but my absolute favorite pieces are the clothes I wear in autumn and winter. I adore flannel shirts, layered with t-shirts and a soft pair of jeans. Leggings are always nice to wear this time of year, as well, and with a cute sweatshirt and a scarf you can put together some really cute outfits! And my boots! I have a pair of Sperry boots that I got for Christmas a few years ago. I think this is my fifth season wearing them, and they are still in excellent condition. I also have a pair of black ankle boots that I like to dress things up a bit. I really want to add a pair of Blundstones, and I've been setting aside a little money here and there to be able to buy a pair. I probably won't purchase them until after the first of the year, a belated Christmas gift to myself, perhaps?

Although I cross-stitch and crochet year round, I really begin to feel the urge to create this time of year! Over the past few years that has been primarily because we decided to make most of our gifts by hand. I really enjoy deciding on what to make and lovingly crafting gifts for my family. For me, it's just so much more meaningful! I also enjoy make seasonal decorations for our home, and there are so many to consider and choose from in this season! I find most of my ideas and inspiration on Pinterest and Instagram. I've saved and bookmarked literally hundreds of them, so many that I'll never be able to do them all. But as odd as it sounds, collecting ideas is almost as fun as making them, at least it is for me!

We are so blessed to live close to the Blue Ridge Parkway, about a 10 minute drive from our front door, and in this season we visit it often. The colors in the mountains this time of year are simply breathtaking, and I'm sure I'll be sharing some pictures here very soon. We will most likely be taking a drive up to the mountains one day this week. We are probably less than a week from peak, and I don't want to miss it. Everywhere you drive around here this time of year is simply beaufiul. 

Another place we like to go in this season is the local apple orchard to pick apples, although to be honest, I usually just purchase them already picked. We went this past weekend to a festival they were hosting, but the rain kept most of the vendors away and the conditions were not favorable for a hay ride, maybe next year will be better. But we did pick up some cider, and I think later on tonight I might heat up a cup and enjoy it!

And with that, I think I think I'll wrapt this post up. You can begin to feel the sun setting much earlier in the day now, which I love, signaling that it's almost time to transition over to the evening. We're having chicken and rice casserole with a side of green beans for dinner. My husband is watching football tonight. not my favorite thing, so I'll busy myself working on Christmas gifts. It will be here before we know it!

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