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A good friend of mine posted on Facebook over the weekend, “Finally! Sweatshirt and jeans weather in Oklahoma!” I couldn’t help but laugh as a life-long Fresnan, knowing we likely have a good month and a half if not two months before sweatshirt weather. The long summer has it’s perks – swimming into the first week of October, not needing to layer under your kids’ Halloween costumes, barbecues with friends even after you have to put away your post-Labor-Day white pants. But, it does make it a little tricky to know when to welcome Fall. Fall is my favorite season, always has been, always will be. My mom made me pumpkin muffins for breakfast as a kid, so I’m going to be bold and say I liked pumpkin even before Starbucks made it so dang cool. (Yup, I went there.) So, to help my fellow fall lovers living in my happy home of FresYes or other extended summer areas, I thought I’d share five quick tips on ways to welcome fall without jumping the gun, and respecting the fact that if you wear a sweatshirt right now, you’ll be a sweaty mess.
1. Bake fall foods – with a twist
‘Tis the season for baking with pumpkin. Don’t wait – it’s ok. If you crave it, bake it – no one’s judging! But, don’t serve your pumpkin bread or pumpkin cookies with hot cocoa or coffee – no way! Serve it with ice cream. Try this recipe from Pumpkin-Oat Chocolate Chip cookie recipe from Cooking Classy. I made these cookies on Sunday night for my family with ice cream, caramel and cinnamon (though I subbed butterscotch chips because I didn’t have chocolate on hand) and they were a hit!
2. Interject fall colors into your wardrobe, mixed with neutrals
Clearly it would be a bad idea to go for your boyfriend sweaters, knit scarves and boots when its 102 out yet, but that doesn’t mean you can’t start incorporating fall colors into your daily outfits. Rich purples look great with khaki or olive/army green. Gold or amber or can go with dark denim and a neutral cognac sandal.
3. Bring the scents of fall into your home
If you’re anything like me, when it’s hot out, you’re not ready for the holiday reminiscent cinnamon-y scents – it just feels mismatched. This year however, I found a good compromise at Bath & Body Works – Pumpkin Apple fragranced items! The crisp apple balances out the sweet pumpkin and makes me think more of apple picking (a perfectly acceptable warm September activity) than Christmas (whoa there Speed Racer). Grab a candle, hand soap or car freshener to gently welcome the season without going overboard with the Santa spices.
4. Get your home ready to welcome to upcoming season
Need to spend your weekend air conditioned, but still want to welcome fall? Spend an afternoon making a beautiful wreath for your front door, to transition from summer to fall to year after year. Good Housekeeping has a great feature with 9 Fresh Wreaths you can make this fall, some as inexpensive as $10 to replicate and many neutral enough to put up in late summer and carry you through fall. I’m not particularly crafty, but these wreaths make me want to try to be.
5. Oh, just get the Pumpkin Spice Latte
Over ice of course – tastes just as good! I’ve had several people now tell me an iced pumpkin spice white mocha is heaven (though, that sounds a bit too sweet for my liking) I felt I had a duty to pass this info on.