Good news, friends - IT'S FINALLY FALL.
Bust out the boots. And the sweaters. And the blankets. And the giant coffee mugs. And all the cozy things.
My husband keeps singing "IT'S THE MOST WONDERFUL TIME OF THE YEARRRRRR" at the top of his lungs so I think it's safe to say fall is our favorite. (If I'm able to capture one of these priceless moments on video you can bet your buttons it will be over on my Instagram. And trust me, you won't want to miss that.)
One thing I love most about this season is being cozy.
After a long, busy summer it just feels SO GOOD to cuddle up with a cup of tea and a good book and soak up the warmth of knitted together things like blankets, soft sweaters, and family.
So, in honor of the changing season, the cooler weather, and the first of the leaves turning, I wanted to share with you, in no particular order, 20 of my very favorite ways to be cozy during the fall time.
1. Wear a scarf - When you can't be at home under a blanket, just wear a scarf. AKA, a wonderful, cozy blanket for your neck. You can go with a chunky knit, you can go thin and drapey, or you can go with my personal favorite: the blanket scarf. The name says it all. An actual blanket that is acceptable to wear in public? Um, YES PLEASE.
2. Flannel - Buffalo check, tartan, lumberjack... you name it, I'm a fan. You can wear it, decorate with it, make things with it, and even cuddle with it. Need I say more?
3. Diffuse essential oils - Granted, this can be applied to any season, but during this time of year we tend to stay indoors quite a bit more so freshening up the stuffy air and making it smell amazing is even more essential. My favorite blends for the fall are thieves and clove or cinnamon with orange. Both blends purify the air and kill germs, strengthen your immune system (peace out, fall colds!), and smell so warm and comforting.
4. Cuddle - With your special someone, with your pup or kitty, or even with a cozy blanket. Bonus points if you cuddle with two or more of the above at the same time.
5. Bake something yummy - Seriously though, is there anything better than filling your home with the smell of applesauce simmering on the stove, or a fresh batch of pumpkin chocolate chip muffins? I think not.
6. Go to the pumpkin patch - No, going to the pumpkin patch is not just for the littles. There is something about picking out your very own pumpkin and finding your way through a corn maze that is the ultimate fall experience for any age.
7. Hot drinks - Tea. Cocoa. Coffee. Cider. Pour yourself a mug, wrap your hands around it, and take a moment to just sip and savor.
8. Go for an evening walk - This is one of my most favorite ways to feel cozy. I love to bundle up, grab my honey and the dog, breathe in the crisp air, and listen to the geese fly over us to the lake down the road. Everything looks like it's dripping in gold - that evening light of fall just can't be beat.
9. Decorate for the season - Some folks like to go all out. If that's you, DO IT. If that's not you, fear not, my friend. This doesn't have to be a hard thing. Personally, I like to keep things simple and natural. Add a few warmer colors, wheat stems in a jar, homegrown pumpkins, and a bundle of corn stalks on the front porch and you're good to go. (Want to see more of my simple farmhouse fall decor? Stay tuned. That post will be coming at ya later this week!)
10. Go apple picking - This one is much more fun if family or friends tag along, plus, many hands make light work. A local fruit stand or farmer's market will do just fine in a pinch if you can't find anywhere nearby to pick your own. Use the apples you bring home to decorate, to eat, or to make delicious things like homemade pie or easy applesauce.
11. Have a bonfire - Every year my husband and I like to have a group of friends over to roast hot dogs and marshmallows in our backyard. Not only is it a chance to burn the fallen leaves and branches that break during the autumn storms, it's a great opportunity for good fellowship and funny (or scary!) stories.
12. Make soup or stew - All it takes is a little prep time in the morning, then you throw all the ingredients in the crock pot and let it simmer all day until dinner time. Nothing like coming home to a hot, delicious dinner that's ready to enjoy!
13. Watch a good chick flick - I don't know why, but I love watching chick flicks in the fall. Maybe it's because being cozy and semi-cheesy love stories give me all the happy feels? I think that might be it. A few of my favorites are Little Women, because, DUH, and You've Got Mail. It doesn't get any better than Meg Ryan, Tom Hanks, and New York in the fall.
14. Read a book - Fall is the perfect time to read those gothic classics in my opinion. Try Jane Eyre, Wuthering Heights, or Frankenstein. (Side note: Do not read Wuthering Heights if you are trapped at home in a snowstorm unless you enjoy getting totally creeped out. Trust me on that one.)
15. Wear a sweater - Because fall weather is sweater weather. You're welcome.
16. Give thanks - Keeping a daily gratitude journal is a great way to maintain a spirit of thankfulness. Few things make me feel more content and cozy from the inside out than counting my blessings. I am a firm believer in being thankful in any season, but I am always especially humbled and grateful for the abundant grace I have been given in Christ during this time of the year.
18. Go for a drive or hike in the fall colors - This is one of the very best ways to enjoy the beautiful scenery during the fall. Take your spouse, a friend, or just yourself and turn down any road that looks promising. Bring along a picnic lunch and don't be afraid to get lost.
19. Wear wool socks - Come October, my feet are always cold. And if my feet are cold, I am definitely not feeling cozy. However, after we moved to Idaho, I discovered the wonderful world of wool socks. My friends, these babies are the remedy for your cold feet! You can even wear slippers over them for extra coziness.
20. Do something kind or generous for someone else - This time of year is not about you being cozy at home by yourself. Of course, there is a time and a place for that, but this time of year is really about giving thanks and sharing your blessings with others. Give your time to serve where help is needed. Open your home and welcome others in to share a meal and good conversation. Bless a friend, or a stranger, with a thoughtful gift - just because. While you shouldn't do these things because it will make you feel good, I will tell you that kindness and generosity will create a deeper, more meaningful sense of warmth and coziness than anything else.