Last year I dropped the ball on fall. There were quite a few things that I simply forgot to do that are really some of the things that make the season so special. This year, I am not going to neglect any of them because I’m making a list and I’m sticking to it.
One – Being outside in the fall is my absolute favorite. I love the briskness in the air and watching the leaves change. When I was in college I used to visit the nearby state park at least once a week just to get out. I don’t really have anywhere like that in Charlotte and I so miss it. This fall I intend to remedy this by trying out some nearby trails and definitely at least one mountain hike.
Two – Last year I didn’t have one caramel apple. Not one. Major screw up. This is literally my favorite fall treat. I’m going to have about 100 this year.
Three – For some reason, whenever I try to read one of the classics that I haven’t yet, I can never get into them. Pride and Prejudice I can read all day every day, but I can’t get past the 10th page of Great Expectations. This fall, it’s happening.
Four - My absolute favorite thing that we did last year (other than the Harry Potter party, obvs) was going to the haunted trail and pumpkin patch at Scarrigan Farms. There is a rock quarry that you hang out in before (which made me feel like we were in a 90′s teen movie because who hangs out in a rock quarry) and the haunted trail is one of the best I’ve been to. That is saying a lot because I go to at least one a year and am rarely impressed. I cannot wait for us to go again.
What things are you guys looking forward to this fall?
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It should really come as no surprise to people who know me best that I have always dreamed of becoming a witch. Now no one needs to get all worried or worked up about this. I am not talking about a devil worshipping and curse casting kind of witch. I am really mostly talking about the kind of witch that can make magical cookies or light a candle by blowing or something like that. I go to sleep most nights with a small hope that I will wake up and it will be so. A few summers ago, in jest and when I was being silly, I went through this phase when I called things “practical magic” pretty frequently (I am aware this is quite dorky and I should be ashamed to discuss it but I am surely not). In part because of my obsession with the movie but also because I just like the idea of practical magic. Even though I was not quite sure what it was.
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At the beginning of the summer, right before and when I was in Europe, I got on this reading kick with a very fun and light author called Sarah Addison Allen and I very quickly read three of her books with my favorites being The Girl Who Chased the Moon and Garden Spells. Her books walk the line between reality and fantasy in a way that I found to be very enchanting (and also reminded me a bit of the movie Practical Magic). Many of her main characters possess a touch of magic but in a way that it almost seemed believable. Examples include a man who loves cake so much he can smell it baking from miles away (so basically me) and a family of women who know the exact ingredients that need to be added to food to influence the people consuming it and impact their emotions.
After reading them, I thought to myself “That right there…that is practical magic.” And I quite like that idea. The idea that we may all possess our own unique magic. Or that maybe even though most happenings have a scientific explanation, they may be helped along by something else preternatural as well. Things like the scent of lavender causing us to relax, or the visible light sparks made by freshly laundered clingy sheets when you pull them loose from each other. Or maybe even a person knowing just the right amount of vanilla to add to a recipe to make it taste like heaven without having to measure. I think I sometimes prefer to think of the world that way and why not really? It certainly makes everyday events seem just a bit more special.
What do you guys think? Do you suspect you could have a secret magical gift?
Make sure to do something spellbinding with it this weekend and have a delightful Labor Day!
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So I have been meaning to write this post for the past few weeks but as is customary in my imperfect world, I am just now getting around to it. There are lots of things that I love about traveling. I love seeing beautiful buildings and landscapes, learning interesting things about history, and eating as much fat food as I want because I am on vacation and calories don’t count. But perhaps my most favorite thing about traveling is the way it makes me feel when I come home. After I get over the exhaustion and jet lag. It makes me feel refreshed and almost peaceful. Getting to know different people and places and experiencing different customs and ways of life while you yourself are completely outside of your comfort zone is so enlightening for me and I always come home with what I think it a greater perspective of the world. It is so easy in our daily lives to get stuck in our little loops and ways of thinking about things and we become so accustomed to our way of living that it is very likely that we start to feel that this may be the best or only way of existing. When I travel I am reminded that our lives are so small in the big picture and that the vast majority of people in the world exist in a way that is completely different than we do. They have different experiences, religious views, prejudices and values. And theirs are just as valid and true as ours are. I can see how this would be scary to some people to consider as it is human nature to want to feel we are the masters of the universe. But for me, it makes me feel better about the world and the people living in it because no matter who I came across whether it was a student from Lithuania working in Bath to help his girlfriend come to be with him, an Irish man whose dream it is to open a bar in the Caribbean like in the movie Cocktail or a Saudi man who didn’t much care for American government (but very much liked American people), it was easy to find common ground and mutual respect for each other. That, to me, is very encouraging because that is reality no matter what the news media would have us believe. Despite all of our differences, I truly believe that we have far more similarities.
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