A Chill in the Air

“I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.” 
― L.M. MontgomeryAnne of Green Gables

October is without doubt the best month of the year. It is the epitome of the Fall season, from the weather, the food, clothes, music…you name it. Unfortunately it’s going by way too fast, and I wish I could somehow stop time or make this season last a year long.  I am writing this to the sound of thunder clapping, and the cacophony of crashing raindrops on the windowpanes. Each flash of lightning is a constant reminder that thunderstorms can be terrifying but also beautiful, which prompts me to consider all the reasons why Autumn is my favourite season, despite the aura of melancholy it seems to exude.

 Thunderstorms

I consider Fall to be a battle of two seasons, where winter eventually wins over summer, and this battle manifests itself even more clearly in the severe thunderstorms that often hit our island, resulting in major floods and chaos on the roads. They can be quite terrifying and catastrophic but somehow, there’s something about the sound of thunder crashing and booming that fills me with inexplicable joy, and despite my fear, I always look forward to it (except when I’m on my way to work!).

Sweater Weather

As the days slowly wane and the long nights approach, a chill creeps into the air. It’s the perfect kind of cold, not the bite of wintry bluster but that tender chill in the air. This change in weather is all that I need to start wearing cosy oversized sweaters and hoodies and it also compels me to start browsing stores for warmer clothes, so much so that by the time Winter eventually arrives, I am often broke…even more so than usual! Sometimes I wonder if my wardrobe has some sort of Undetectable Extension Charm, because if it doesn’t, I have no explanation for the huge number of winter clothes jammed inside.

Cold mornings, warm beds

I live for those moments when I wake up unexpectedly early, roused by the sound of clapping thunder, and realising that I still have hours until I have to get up for work. So I snuggle back between the warm covers and go back to sleep to the sound of the rain and the whistling wind outside. And if it’s the weekend, no one and nothing can make me get out of the warm bed…except for the postman when he arrives with my book mail!

Falling leaves

The first plunge of the rust coloured leaves initiates the first notes of the Autumnal overture. I revel in the sight of the trees skirted by pools of orange coloured foliage, and the tumbling leaves from the almost bare branches dancing in twists and turns as they fall to the ground. There is a carpet of gold and crimson adorning the concrete sidewalks, almost as if nature itself wants to give us the opportunity to walk on a red carpet at least once in our lifetime. And as I step over this lush blanket in my tatty old boots, I hum along to the crunch and crackle of the leaves underfoot, a sound so beautiful and satisfying!

The pumpkin King

…because obviously there would be no Halloween without our dear Jack Skellington! My obsession with The Nightmare Before Christmas started from back when I was still in primary school, having watched it on TV expecting a charming Christmas movie! Needless to say, my mother was appalled! For the life of her she could never understand how a skeleton could ever be considered ‘cute’. I love this movie because it brings so many wonderful childhood memories plus the songs are honestly addicting!

Scary movies that involve hideous dolls, clowns, serial killers or exorcisms are not my favourite and I avoid them like the plague. I learnt from experience never to overestimate my ability to cope with the nightmares that ensue. So during Halloween I mostly watch Tim Burton’s movies like Dark Shadows, Corpse Bride and TNBC.

Pumpkin Spice Candles

Autumnal-themed scented candles will always be my favourite and I certainly cannot fail from mentioning the most exquisite Pumpkin Spice Candle by P.F. Candle Co. It encompasses various scents to make this fall classic: pumpkins, toasted cinnamon, nutmeg, brown sugar and creamy butter. The moment the wick starts to burn, your imagination will run wild with scenes of endless pumpkin fields, crunchy cinnamon toast and and earthy breeze on your face.

I also bought two themed candled from The Melting Library, one of which is also Fall-themed: Flannel and Fiction- Autumn Reading Inspired Candle and The Restricted Section- Harry Potter inspired Candle. I cannot wait for them to arrive!

Playlists

It is now becoming a yearly tradition to compile a Fall playlist and listen to it on repeat throughout the months that follow. These songs accompany me on hunts for the perfect pumpkin, during walks amongst orange-clad trees and trips to the coffeeshops.  Melancholic songs, acoustic, indie and folk music are my go-to choice for this season. Firewood Smoke is my recent Autumn playlist which you can listen to on Spotify (link down below). I truly hope you enjoy it!

  1. Ballad of Dwight Fry- Alice Cooper
  2. The Night We Met- Lord Huron
  3. Beekeeper- Keaton Henson
  4. Promise- Ben Howard
  5. El Buho- Blanco White
  6. Shield Your Eyes- Dry The River
  7. Have We Met Before- Tom Rosenthal
  8. Teenage Daughter- D.I.D
  9. The Words You Say- Harrison Storm
  10. I Found- Amber Run
  11. Land of the Living- Roo Panes
  12. Harvest- Dustin Tebbutt
  13. Dandelion Wine- Gregory Alan Isakov
  14. Saturn- Sleeping At Last 

Coffeeshops and Bookstores

As the weather turns brisk and cold, warm drinks once again become tremendously appealing. While I normally drink tea all year round, I obviously enjoy it much more when it’s not sweltering hot. My few favourite hot brews include English breakfast tea, Peppermint tea, Hazelnut cappuccino and hot chocolate with toasted marshmallows. Autumn weekends usually involve roaming around, discovering new coffee shops and retreating into their cosy interiors from the cold outside. I also love browsing bookstores during rainy days; being surrounded with overflowing bookshelves warms my heart better than any hot drink.

Home-cooked meals & Baking

When the air becomes cooler with a tincture of earthiness, it instantly brings to mind the warm dinner waiting for me when I get home. Basically all the food mentioned in the Harry Potter books are my favourite cold-weather treats: casseroles, pumpkin soup, apple pies, Yorkshire pudding, boiled potatoes, homemade fudge and banana bread hot from the oven. I also enjoy baking, especially when I get home from work as a way for me to unwind. I love the feel of the dough as I slowly give it shape, the scooping of chocolate mixture into colourful muffin containers and the smell that permeates throughout the house while you watch the cake mixture rise in the oven.

Fantasy Books

 For some reason, my love for fantasy books during the Autumn season increases tenfold, as one can see from my previous TBR post. Maybe the changing colours of nature and the long cold nights allow my imagination to run wild with possibilities of other fantastical worlds that had previously been out of my reach. The book that I will forever recommend as the perfect Fall read is The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. I’m almost certain that this book is an actual embodiment of Fall and once you start reading it, you will surely start craving apple cider, cinnamon rolls and caramel covered popcorn.

What’s your favourite thing about Fall? I hope you have a wonderful end to October and a Happy Halloween! x

x.