Thursday, September 12, 2013

devouring all things fall

Although the calendar says we are nearing halfway through September, the weather outside says otherwise.  I actually got in an argument the other day with a friend because I thought we were still in August.  The weather has been hot, we had the hottest day this late in the year in six decades, and the high pollen count has made me feel worse for wear lately. And although we'll all be complaining about the cold and anxious for hot before we know it, I think my body, mind, and spirit are ready for it to feel like fall out there. 

In between naps, garage sale marathons, tomato canning and other day-to-days, I've been seeing some fall favorites creep into our home amidst the heat outside.  Labor Day weekend, we slept in and stayed in pajamas well through the morning, ate cinnamon rolls and watched cartoons with the windows open and the cool air filling our house.  I replaced summer scents with fall ones, lit pumpkin and apple candles and baked peanut butter cookies with Cruz.  We ate marshmallow popcorn and watched movies, had spaghetti for dinner, and spent an afternoon canning pints of fresh marinara sauce so we could enjoy our fresh produce throughout the rest of the year.  We planted some mums, wore sweatshirts, and played board games on a Friday night before bedtime.

I like to make myself lists in leiu of new seasons, not as an expectation or a checklist, but as a way to embrace the uniqueness of the season and use my creativity in order to find joy and make happy memories for our family.  My fall lists are always my favorite because they are filled with both old and new traditions that become timestamps of these special days.  

Visit here to sneak a peek at last year's post, or 2011's, or 2010's.  I'd love to hear your ideas and favorite fall past times, too!

Oh, and a few pictures of the Cruz dude lately.  Pumpkin cupcakes at Cup of Joe and helping me water some mums (among other things) for the front porch.   

1. Play explorers with Cruz at Hartman Reserve – bring our backpacks, collect leaves, and tell stories around a makeshift campfire 
2. Wear tights – colored ones with pretty dresses...because maternity pants are not my favorite.
3. Organize Cruz’s room – redo his closet and downsize his two rooms to one 
4. Spruce up baby’s room
5. Read Catching Fire before it comes to theaters...then, dinner and movie date night with my love
6. Make squash soup.  And carrot soup. 
7. Do some crafting with pressed leaves 
8. Fishing and picnic date with Beau – bring a thermos of hot chocolate, order a pizza, and sit on flannel blankets at Prairie Lakes Park
9. Decorate with hay bales and mums 
10. Drink hot tea and eat homemade oatmeal outside in the morning 11. Go to a barn sale 
12. Make peanut butter cookies with Cruz – dunk them in milk 
13. Make spaghetti alla carbonara 
14. A carpet picnic and family movie night … delivery pizza in front of a fire 
15. Take Cruz to Chuck 'e Cheese – he’s been asking for a year now
16. Fresh baked apple crisp and roast 
17. Buy a new pair of boots. And a new scarf. And throw in an oversized cozy sweater, too. 
18. Go on a weekend road trip – stop and explore a little town we’ve never been to 
19. Spend a day in Northeast Iowa – buy some apples and play in the leaves 
20. Go to an apple orchard 
21. Start crocheting again – make something for baby 
22. Make a Thanksgiving tree 
23. Buy some new flannel pajamas 
24. Spend a day at the pumpkin patch 
25. Have breakfast for dinner 
26. Do an apple craft with Cruz 
27. Drink hot chocolate and go for a bundled up walk at night 
28. Take Cruz to a football game 
29. A pot of chili, a pan of pumpkin bars, and a Sunday of football and vegging 
30. Listen to James Taylor on a Saturday afternoon 


  1. Von Maur has some really cute boots ;) I talked myself into a pair today!

  2. u would love love love southeast iowa :) come get your picture by the American gothic house!!!! little towns with cute shops :)

  3. Hi Ashley. We have a mutual friend Allison Barness. I love your blog. I am from northeast Iowa and if you make a trip you should definitely check out Decorah. It's beautiful, full of parks, trails, a cute fish hatchery Cruz would love and lots of fun stores. Also if you want to visit some great apple orchards, check out Gay Mills, WI. It's been a few years since I've been there but they have tons of great orchards. I plan to take my family there this year.



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