Monday, October 07, 2013

7 on the 7th: fall favorites!

Happy fall ya'll! Do you call it autumn? No judgment here-- honestly, I like "fall" better because it rhymes with "y'all." Regardless of how you refer to it, I love this time of year. Remember earlier in the summer when I was confessing about being one of those people who just loves whatever season is currently happening? Yes, it's true. I loved summer. The food, the festivities, the sun, and did I mention the food? But once September rolled around, I was quick to avert my affections to all things fall. Since technically fall did not start until closer to the end of September, I decided to save my fall favorites for October's 7 on the 7th!

1. pumpkin: everything
I am one of the pumpkin addicts-- I love it all: the scent, the flavor, the color, the decor, you name it. On September 1st, I did not wait a second longer to break out the pumpkin candles. All 12 of them, to be exact! Back in June, Dustin purchased quite a few pumpkin candles that were on sale. I teased him about the large quantity and the fall scent. I told him that we could not burn pumpkin scented candles in the middle of a season that, in my mind, calls for citrusy, summery scents. So we stored them until I could no longer take it. I have not burned them all, but I have put a good dent in the stockpile! In addition to the candles, I have enjoyed pumpkin shakes, coffee creamers, and muffins. I pinned and tested this delicious recipe for a banana pumpkin shake. It makes a sweet, cool treat for the fall days that are warmer than usual. I also purchased these adorable ceramic pumpkins at the Dollar Tree for, you guessed it, a dollar! We are all about a deal in the Curtsinger household--especially a cute, seasonal one!

2. leaves
Isn't this bold red leaf just gorgeous!? It was one of the first to fall from the tree in our front yard and by far one of the prettiest I have seen. I love the beauty of this time of year. All the colors are my favorites-- reds, yellows, oranges, and browns. Isn't God an amazing artist? His creation declares His glory! I love the leaf confetti that is taking over our street and yard. It is just so cozy and beautiful. 

3. apple cider
My Granddaddy passed down his love for apple cider to me, no doubt. Back home, he visits Schmidt Farms in Paducah, KY that makes the best cider you've ever tasted. He stocks up on their cider by the gallons, freezes it, and then shares it with us throughout the winter. Granddaddy is such a giver! I was so excited when I found a place here in Illinois that makes pretty tasty cider as well. While I am pretty partial to Schmidt Farms, this stuff is a close second. I love it cold but on the nights that are cool, I enjoy warming it with some cinnamon sticks for extra spice. Such a great fall treat! 

4. squash
I love all squash-- summer, spaghetti, butternut, etc. I typically in the past have just decorated with acorn squash. But I wanted to try cooking it this year. I really liked it. All I did was cut it in half, scoop out the seeds, drizzle with EVOO (extra virgin olive oil, for all you non-Rachael Ray fans), and sprinkle with salt and pepper. I baked it at 400 for about 45 minutes or so. The result was a crispy crust with a tender inside. I think I will try it again with some more seasonings but I did enjoy the simplicity of the oil, salt, and pepper. Not to mention, I thought it was just so pretty! 

5. scarves
While, I could go on and on about the tastes of fall that I love, I must also mention a couple of other things! Scarves being one of them. I love that they can add color, texture, and warmth to any outfit. Who knew that there were so many ways to wear them, too!? One of my favorites is the purple one that my Grandmother gave me for Christmas one year. It is so soft and warm. I appreciate functional gifts that you will always associate with the giver! 

6. mums
To me, mums are the classic fall decor. Their simplicity and pop of color are just perfect! I can't decide which color is my favorite. I love the bright yellow, but the red is also lovely! The oranges, whites, and pinks/purples are just gorgeous as well. You just can't go wrong with mums in my book! 

7. Ecclesiastes 3:1
There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under heaven…
One Sunday, I was really noticing the changing of the seasons. The air was a bit more crisp, the leaves were a bit more colorful, and this verse came to mind. Isn't it amazing how the seasons change? How the divine timing occurs? I am so thankful for a growing appreciation for the seasons in life-- both the physical seasons and the spiritual ones. When you take a moment to reflect on the work God is doing in your life, to actively look for what He is doing in and around you, it is truly amazing what you will find! He wants to bless us, and richly does so, but how often do we overlook those blessings? How often do we take for granted the seasons of our life because we are too excited to see the next one come? Maybe you're in a rich season-- one of bounty and happiness. Maybe you're in a low season-- one of doubt or loss or struggle. Maybe you're in a transitional season. My prayer is that regardless of our season, we will praise and thank Him. He is so worthy. 

So there you have it! My 7 fall favorites. I would love to hear yours! 
Enjoy this season! 

Have a blessed day! 

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