I am a sucker for lists. Life lists, bucket lists, travel lists, reading lists, I love lists to organize everything I want to do, and see, and experience during this life of mine. I especially love seasonal bucket lists, which help me to make the absolute most of the quick changing of the leaves and temperatures and activities.
Fall is one of my favorite times of year, thanks to my Southern upbringing where football rules all. We’ve already packed in our first game (which, despite a monsoon, was not rained out) and MBH and I sat down to plan out our adventures over the next few busy weeks. We’ll update with photos as we check each of these off during our autumn extravaganza!
Hayride & Corn Maze
What would fall be without these perfectly absurd traditions that I love so dearly?
Growing up in Florida, I’d never seen pumpkins growing in their actual patch before, on the vine. We found the cutest one!
Possibly one of my favorite things in the world is celebrating seasonal bucket lists in places perfectly designed to do so. We checked off so. many. things. at this festival tucked away near Germantown, MD, where they had apple cider, apple cider donuts, and an APPLE SLINGSHOT.
We’ve been picking up the odd bit of trash on our daily walks, but lately we’ve noticed more than we could easily grab. So we brought a bag along yesterday and picked up everything we saw during our three-block walk home from the metro. My son asked “Why don’t people just throw their trash in the garbage cans?” and boy do I wish I had an answer that wasn’t depressing.
I’m hoping once the weather truly cools off that we’ll have a chance to get away to the mountains for a gorgeous drive once the colors start changing on the leaves.
Make Pumpkin Bread
Possibly my favorite out of many beloved kinds of breads.
We’ve stopped by many a wonderful orchard and festival with petting zoos, but I’d like to bring both children to a farm now that they’re a bit older. Nothing like farm chores to instill a bit of responsibility and since we don’t have our own, I’ll have to farm that parenting skill out. Farm it out. Do you get it?!
We have picked nearly every kind of delicious fruit and vegetable, and one of my favorite things about the changing of the seasons is going to farms to harvest new delicious foods.
Apple Pies, Caramel Apples, Apple Butter & Apple Cider
Guess which fruit we are planning to pick?!
Our neighborhood plans an epic Halloween parade each year and we are going to enter their stroller contest. Our costumes are always amazing in concept yet shabby in execution and I can’t wait to see how this year’s turns out.
Collect Pine Cones & Make a Bird Feeder
My son has started learning the names of birds in our area. We checked out library books on birds, study their features, and try to spot them when we are out and about, and I have some birdseed tucked away from my local Buy Nothing Group ready to make our feathered friends happy this fall and winter!
S’mores & Bonfires
We don’t own a fire pit. We have no place to make s’mores, yet I. Will. Find. A. Way.
I am an enormous scaredy cat who once called MBH to come home early when I was reading a too-spooky part of ‘World War Z.’ I definitely think a scary tour through an eerie town in the dark of night (plus beers) is a good idea this fall.
November Notes & Thankfulness
For a few years, I’ve posted a daily gratitude on Facebook. It can be anything – big or small – but it does help remind me to be thankful for the many blessings I have in the leadup to Thanksgiving. This year, I’d love to get my son involved, so we’re planning on having him help write our holiday card messages and let the people in our lives know how much we appreciate them.
Chili Cookoff with Neighbors
We have always been so fortunate with neighbors. Our new neighborhood gets together every few months for a giant potluck party, and this fall, I suggested we do a chili cookoff because a) I love competition and b) I love all foods you can eat with chips.
Nighttime Moon Walk
We just discovered Tinkergarten as part of my quest to raise kids who are more outdoorsy than me and will be joining them on Nov. 4 for a fall moon walk in our city. Find one near you!
Here is a list of other things we’ve joined: Boy Scouts, Soccer, Swimming, the YMCA. We are going to love being outdoorsy if it kills me (though I really hope it does not). We live in an area with some great but under appreciated hikes, and I hope we can do more of them!
Make Sangria and Rum Cider
Because seasonal drinking is just like seasonal baking but much more fun.
Drive In Movie
I don’t know if I’ve ever been to a drive in movie, but now seems like a great time to start!
Decorate for Halloween
This year’s plan is spooky spiders in our front window.
Family Photo Shoot & Fancy Camera Practice
Now that my kids are a tad older, I can go back to carrying expensive equipment in my free hands. I’d love some great photos of us exploring our world and have big dreams of a photo gallery in our hallway that changes out seasonally. Some day!
I’m excited to try this creamy tomato version with grilled cheese, this pumpkin one to be super-basic, and this chicken soup to make sure my mama flu-fighting skills are perfected before they need to be.
Read The Raven & Watch Casper the Friendly Ghost
When our son was little, we were excellent at choosing the perfect piece of bedtime story literature. The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere was great for the Fourth of July, Casey at the Bat was perfect for summertime, and The Raven was wonderful for Halloween. This year, we’re bringing the tradition back and I’m so excited because now my son is old enough to understand them and HE LOVES SPOOKY THINGS. We’ve got at least one family movie night planned (which would probably be a great time to eat our caramel apples) and are hoping Casper the Friendly Ghost would be a good not-too-scary movie for his first ‘scary film.’
What are your favorite fall traditions? What other things should we add to our list?