Fall is Not a Four Letter Word

There is something about the waning final days of summer when the evening air starts to crisp and you see the subtle shifts of color around you that feels downright sexy. I am not one to use the term sexy lightly (in fact it feels almost criminal to use it to describe anything but Idris Elba), but for me there is a quality of Fall that can be described no other way. My senses feel heightened, my body immensely grateful for the return of layers, and I feel the crackle of opportunity, of newness, of a fresh start. And, let’s face it, making it to the end of swimsuit season should be welcomed with a parade or other such fanfare.

As a child, Fall felt wistful as the weather changed and the school year began, but as I’ve gotten older, I have come to cherish this season with a reverence that no other elicits. Replacing weekends at the lake and days at the park is the opportunity to draw inward and that sets my introvert soul on fire. And, I am not ashamed to say after a mere day of adjusting to the silence, the kids’ return to school feels like the dawn of endless possibility. (#freedom #momsgonewild #daydrinking #justkidding) Fall is a chance for me to do, to be, to feel, and to stay grounded and connected in a way that I am not otherwise.

The rapid changes of Fall are an ADHD dream. Wow, look at that pretty leaf. Maybe we should make s’mores. Ooh, it smells like a bonfire. Wait, what was I doing again? And, as I step off the front porch into the cool morning air that feels sharp and exciting in my lungs, I feel like it is the first real breath I have had in a long time.

I welcome the days of piling on blankets, wearing snuggly scarves, wrapping my hands around a piping mug, reading books and writing letters, all the damn cliche things about Fall, except pumpkin spice lattes. (They are an abomination and crime against coffee. And, you can’t convince me otherwise.)

These are a few of my favorite things:

 

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Fall welcomes the return of crochet season. If people are lucky, this results in handmade Christmas presents. If my ADHD is lucky, it results in a tangle of 20 half-finished projects. Either way, yarn wins.

S’mores feel like a socially acceptable and encouraged dessert option and that feels like winning.

Each Fall back in Virginia, my siblings and I would anxiously await the return of apple cider at our local Dunkard farm. (They also sold these amazing hand sewn Barbie outfits that transitioned Barbie from her club going attire to fully covered and bonneted. #AmishBarbie) But, without a place to punish my Barbies and get freshly made cider in my new neighborhood, I’ve had to make do with gluten free donuts and other baked yummy fall treats at the farmer’s market.

In my ideal world regardless of season, I like to keep the house cool enough to pile on heaps of blankets and to warrant wearing a cozy cowl indoors. I’m working my way into fingerless gloves (though they make me feel like I need to sing the Les Mis soundtrack on repeat).

I am the person that notices the subtle shifts from day to day in the color of the leaves and feels the need to take a picture of it to point out the differences (to no one in particular). Thank you, Fall, for giving my OCD a purpose.

As someone with an enormous noggin, I welcome an excuse to wear a hat (besides my stint at TGI Fridays). As a grown up, I may not choose to wear the “flair” ridden suspenders in my everyday life, but I still get excited about a chance to pop a hat on my melon (when I can find one that fits). #BigHeadDoCare

Over a year ago, I started a secret mission to write my grandmother a letter every week leading up to her 90th birthday. Her birthday has come and gone, but I still love writing the letters. Fall feels like the perfect time to write letters to people who will get a little joy, to spend time offloading in a journal or scheming in a planner. Essentially anything that involves a pen and paper feels like a good idea (except for bomb threats or Dear John letters).

As a someone with a fair amount of red to her hair, Autumn colors serve me well. I know I don’t need permission to wear rich colors, but wearing Essie Wicked nailpolish without feeling like an angsty goth teenager is one of life’s small joys.

Oh, my layers, glorious lump and pale skin covering layers! Hallowed be thy name, Layers. I love wearing you while it is still a choice and not a means to survival.

Fall, you are hands down the sexiest of seasons. Stick around for a while.