16th October 2021
This week: Autumn leaves, soup and carving pumpkins.
By day I'm Christmas planning and prepping for our busy season. By early morning / after work it's all about crunchy, cosy, crisp Autumn. In my industry, which is often focused on Xmas gifting, it's easy to rush towards Winter and forget to take a moment to breath in Autumn. But with it's beautiful colours and cooler temperature it's key to stop, look and absorb. I always make time to get outside during Autumn and generally walk for miles. This weeks Friday 5 focuses on 5 simple autumn pleasures, an autumn bucket list and 5 of my absolute favourite autumn things to do.
1. Jump into a pile of leaves whilst out for a walk.
Jumping in leaves is a rite of passage, for sure, it's important to ensure we get outside and embrace the fresh air. I joined the National Trust last year and I am busy getting around my local NT properties where I can always find a really good walk and a decent pile of crisp, gold leaves to jump into. There is nothing better, or more satisfying, than having a good kick about on an Autumn morning.
2. Carve, paint and decorate a pumpkin.
Apparently the way to choose the best carving pumpkin is to knock the bottom, if you hear a hollow sound it's a good one. Once you've found the right pumpkin you can really embrace your creativity and plan different designs. If you're not into carving you could try painting them. This year I'm stacking mine outside my house to create a Halloween scene. I've only done one so far!
3. Get Cosy by a wood burning stove.
I love the warmth and relaxation of Autumn and I am so excited because it's log fire season. I've got a beautiful log burner we installed in our living room, it heats the whole house. One of my favourite things to do is fall into the massive beanbag we have, sit in front of the fire and watch a good film. As I'm shedding my lockdown pounds I have swapped the usual wine and marshmallow hot chocolates for autumn themed herbal infusions such as dried apple, lemon and ginger and cinnamon. With the pine cone candles it's Autumn overload here!
4. Make Soup.
This week my coach asked me what I'd do if I had more time. We were talking about my working less (that's a whole other post, I'll get onto that next year once we have moved house and I can share my plans) and my reply was to do more home cooking. I'm getting more and more into good wholesome nutrition and cooking from scratch is something that feels very exciting. I do cook a lot and generally stay in tune with the seasons. Autumn cooking is all about slow Sunday's with a roast in the oven and cooking soup, using homemade stock, from scratch. This time of year I opt for Butternut squash, pumpkin, chilli & sweet potato soups.
Here are some links to my favourite recipes:
Mary Berry's Butternut Squash Soup
Good Food Butternut Squash Soup with Chilli
Jamie Olivers Butternut Squash Soup
5. Make an Autumn Wreath for the door
Who doesn't love a welcoming entrance to home? I've got a covered porch and am planning to make an autumn wreath and display pumpkins too.
I love collecting natural elements from my walks and at the moment I've got some chestnuts and leaves. I'll keep going until I have enough for a decent wreath. I'll post a picture when I'm done. This year I'm going to add some berries for Christmas too, so that my wreath really does get good use.
Free Digital Download
To help you plan your Autumn bucket list I've got this handy digital download planner. If you click the link below you can print it and use it as often as you need to.
I'd love to expand this Friday 5 into an Autumn bucket list and set out all the Autumn Activities & Fun Things I love to do. I haven't even mentioned scarecrows, chestnuts, the best Autumn drives in Hampshire, the best Sunday lunches - we have so many beautiful and autumnal pubs in this part of the world. Not to mention the best place for Pumpkin spiced lattes. On that note I feel I need to light the fire, get the soup on and plan film night.
See you next week!