Simple Fall Rituals/Transitions - Mothering Forums

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Old 09-19-2007, 02:33 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Not 100% sure this is the right forum, but I'm looking for ideas on ways to celebrate and transition to autumn. I'm not looking for anything especially religious and/or pagan, so maybe "ritual" isn't the right word--just things that I might try to mark the rhythm of the seasons. Does this question make any sense? I'm thinking, for instance, of certain very seasonal dishes to cook, of putting new (as in "have been stored," not as in "newly purchased") blankets/table linens out. . . candles, maybe. . . Any other ideas? Things that I could involve DS (2 years old) in would be extra special.
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Old 09-19-2007, 03:15 PM
 
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We start burning candles and I buy at the local farm stand those little decorative gourds to put in bowls around the house. mixed with pine cones (which could be collected at the park or someone's yard as a joint toddler activity) they make a very festive centerpiece. The gourds will start to rot after a couple weeks so make sure you don't put them on raw wood or fabric as it will stain.

We also put mums out on the porch. This my husband's favorite and something we started doing long before our son was born.

When I was a child, we would hunt for fall leaves and my mom would press them with a warm iron between two sheets of waxed paper then tape them to the window. I think I remember this because she was so not the type to do anything crafty (she was pretty high strung and didn't waste time doing trivial (from her point of view) things

Mom to DS, born fall 05 after ,,, wife/best friend to DH We have
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Old 09-19-2007, 03:32 PM
 
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I try to keep apple cider in the house during autumn, and we usually buy a bushel of apples to eat - so lots of hot applesauce, apple crisps, apple pies. Yum!
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Old 09-19-2007, 06:09 PM
 
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Mmm, we love fall and celebrate from now til after Thanksgiving!

Lots of good ideas have been mentioned already. We like burning yummy candles and baking pumpkin and apple dishes. Decorating in and out with gourds, pumpkins, corn stalks, even fall colored pillows, table cloths, etc. Long walks outside collecting treasures, like the pretty leaves to press. Raking leaves, jumping in piles, driving somewhere cool to watch the harvest moon come up. Picking pumpkins and apples with friends, making cider and donuts. Making caramel apples. Reading fall kids books, taking long drives with the windows down. Hometown football games and homecoming parades. Farmer's markets, pumpkin carving contests...

There's just so much to love about fall!
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Old 09-19-2007, 10:36 PM
 
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I used to love to switch to flannel sheets on the beds when we lived somewhere colder.

I love to drink hot cocoa and will do it as soon as the weather starts getting below 90 in the morning, so ds and I have been enjoying it for a bit now.
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Old 09-20-2007, 09:54 AM - Thread Starter
 
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These are all lovely ideas, and they're very much getting me in an autumnal mood (not too prematurely, I hope, since it may be a while till the weather gets truly fall-like. I think the transition to flannel sheets may have to be a winter thing for us). I love the idea of the gourd and pinecone centerpiece; I think DS will have a ball making that with me. I'm going to try and locate a really good apple source around here as well; the idea of having a whole bushel to work from is great.

Thanks so much! Fall is my favorite season, too (except I'm not so crazy about the football--which makes me something of a criminal in these parts!).
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Old 09-20-2007, 10:02 AM
 
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I look forward to hearing more.

I like the idea of ritualizing the change of seasons as well.
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Old 09-20-2007, 11:08 AM
 
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I don't know if this is a ritual, really, but it helps me mark the season...

Somehow I feel compelled to do a thorough decluttering and housecleaning in the early Fall (and again in Spring). It's sort of instinctive. Banish the clutter now, so our home will be unstressful and lovely to be in during the winter.

I go through all the kids' clothes, decide what to keep/get rid of, decide what to store and how to store it. I tidy all the storage areas - shed, garage, etc. I get the yard cleaned up for Winter so it won't be so icky in the Spring.

Fall pretty much hits around Labor Day here. We start eating cold-weather foods like soups and stews, and drinking hot tea. I bring out the slippers and bathrobes and coats.

I put candles around the house and start lighting them in the evening when it is dark (up on the mantel or other high places when there are littles in the house).

September we enjoy the end of summer and beginning of harvest-time; October is about harvest and Halloween; November is about the coming of winter and our Thanksgiving family celebrations; December brings the transition to winter.

I like the idea of using fall-color-themed napkins/tablecloths, etc, but keep in mind that if you have this tradition you have to store these things.

My kids make decorations and I steer them toward seasonal colors. LOL.

We live in a farming area so there is a lot of harvest-type stuff going on here.

Coming back to add that one of my favorite fall rituals is a hike in the leafy woods. Follow it up with a snack of apples and peanut butter, maybe some cider, and it IS fall.

Amanda, mom to Everest (12), Alden (10-1/2), Ellery (7-1/2), & Avery (6)
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Old 09-20-2007, 11:22 AM
 
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I light candles in the afternoon when I get home from work.

Flannel sheets went on the bed this weekend, and my sleeping hat and fuzzy blanket that I wrap around my head and neck while I read in bed (my head is right at a window) came out of storage.
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Old 09-20-2007, 12:34 PM
 
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I love apple picking, we generally go a couple times in September. We will also buy bulk second quality apples and make applesauce. Last year we were way too ambitious and made a ton, but were exhausted, I'd like to keep it an every year tradition and just make less.

Mightymoo - Mom to DD (6) and DS (4)
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Old 09-20-2007, 11:05 PM
 
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I love Fall!!!!! I light candles in the evening. Buy apple cider, place fall mums in the front of the house. We make a scarecrow. Pot roast in the croc pot.
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Old 09-21-2007, 02:54 AM
 
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collecting pine cones and chestnuts, bringing in plants before the first freeze...i have some fall decorations and wreaths i get out

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Old 09-21-2007, 10:00 PM
 
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Reading this thread has made me really happy, and now I have a nice warm, fluttery feeling inside.
I love the changing of the seasons and fall is my favorite!

Things that stick out to me as "fall" from when I was a kid are:
-Hay-bale rides from the neighbors
-Exploring outside, I loved pulling out the fluffy part of the milk weed and watching it fly away. I also loved squishing pokeweed berries, or making a "witch's potion" out of them
-Picking out a pumpkin for Halloween, carving it with my dad, and then playing pumpkin baseball after Halloween was over and it had rotted a bit

I am so excited to start new traditions with my daughter, I hope we can do things that are as special to her as my childhood memories are to me.

Thanks for all the other great ideas!
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Old 09-22-2007, 01:59 AM
 
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Fall is usually a big decluttering time for me. I go through clothes, try to organize the garage(doesn't always happen), donate what remains of the garage sale items or freecycle them. Do a clean sweep throught the whole house to make sure I got everything. I also clean up the yard and do a thorough deep clean of my house.

I also take out the warm blankets. Light candles. Make soy hot cocoa. Bake tons of cookies and cakes. Crock pot meals. Tofurkey and mashed potatoes...mmm yummy! Snuggling in our warm blankets and reading stories.

We are trying a new tradition this year.Camping...we usually go in the summer time but this year we decided to wait until fall (and I had to get a new tent). We plan on going sometime in the middle of October.

"Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication" --Leonardo Da Vinci
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Old 09-22-2007, 03:21 AM
 
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I love fall too! Fall is such a special time, we harvest the garden, go apple picking, pumpkin patch and decorate our home with pumpkins and gourds. I make pumpkin pie, apple tarts and veggie stews with carrots and potatoes. Just tonight I made carrot cake. Yum! Also as it gets colder we gather wood for the fireplace and sit by the fire sipping port wine with blue cheese.

Fall also marks my most crafty time of year as I'm gearing up for holiday gifts. We start making vinegar and soap batches for gifts. This year I'm also working on some ceramics.

Ahhhh... I love fall.
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Old 09-22-2007, 03:23 AM
 
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I just switched the foyer table runner from the green spring/summer one to the red harvest colors fall/winter one. I'll be changing the candles over form floral to cranberry type and I'll be getting the annual cinnamon broom. Child has window clings for holidays so those go on the front door as holidays arrive.

I also change the handsoap in the bathrooms to a more "fall" scent.

I've just gotten into square foot gardening, so there's the garden's seasonal patterns as well.

Then there's food -- more soups/stew type than salad/cold dish type.

A.
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Old 09-23-2007, 04:47 AM
 
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So nice!
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Old 09-23-2007, 01:37 PM
 
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Just yesterday, we bought a thing of three ears of corn (you know the kind you see in the fall where it is pretty colors and already dried out?). I made a pretty bow with some burnt orange ribbon that I had in my giftwrapping bin. I grabbed a suction cup and hung it on our glass door. It looks so nice, and the corn was only $3.
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Old 09-23-2007, 01:53 PM
 
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happy fall y'all!

today is the autumnal equinox. we're going to a wedding this afternoon so that will be most of our celebration , but thanks for all the other good ideas.

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Old 09-23-2007, 02:12 PM
 
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Originally Posted by amyamanda View Post
I don't know if this is a ritual, really, but it helps me mark the season...


Fall pretty much hits around Labor Day here. We start eating cold-weather foods like soups and stews, and drinking hot tea. I bring out the slippers and bathrobes and coats.
That's it. I'm moving to Vermont. I live in Texas; what is this "fall" we speak of?
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Old 09-23-2007, 03:07 PM
 
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Flannel sheets went on the bed this weekend

LOL Vanessa don't shoot me but my flannel sheets never came out of the general circulation. I find flannel is just right for "I need something to sleep under but not a blanket." I use my regular sheets for super hot weeks, but flannel for summer otherwise.

Kristin -- mom of Erin (11/5/02) and Leah (9/29/05)
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Old 09-23-2007, 03:08 PM
 
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. I live in Texas; what is this "fall" we speak of?
I believe ya'll call it december 4-7.

Kristin -- mom of Erin (11/5/02) and Leah (9/29/05)
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Old 09-23-2007, 04:10 PM
 
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Mama to 9 so far:Mother of Joey (20), Dominick (13), Abigail (11), Angelo (8), Mylee (6), Delainey (3), Colton (2) and Baby 8 and Baby 9 coming sometime in July 2013.   If evolution were true, mothers would have three arms!

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Old 09-23-2007, 06:30 PM
 
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The Delicata and Acorn squash just arrived at my local coop and I was sooo happy to see them back again! I have to admit the last week some feelings of dread and a subtle sense of loss began to set in as I realized the cold and wet was coming back....I think these feelings are natural, but I didnt want to let them get the best of me. As I sat down to a nice warm dinner of roasted squash w/ butter and kale, corn and wild rice, something inside me shifted, and I was deeply grateful for the season, and began to look forward to autumn's transition into a snuggly winter! I swear theres something in squash that helps beat the autumn blues!

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Old 09-23-2007, 07:55 PM
 
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I swear theres something in squash that helps beat the autumn blues!
I agree. There's nothing like a dinner of acorn squash to start the season off.

kerc-I don't even use flannel sheets where I live now (middle GA) because it's way too hot for them, but when I lived in OH, I would leave them on until summer hit.

It may be 87 degrees outside right now, but there's a pumpkin on our porch, and ds1 is asking me every day if it's Halloween yet, so fall must be on the way.
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Old 09-23-2007, 08:19 PM
 
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I agree. There's nothing like a dinner of acorn squash to start the season off.

kerc-I don't even use flannel sheets where I live now (middle GA) because it's way too hot for them, but when I lived in OH, I would leave them on until summer hit.

It may be 87 degrees outside right now, but there's a pumpkin on our porch, and ds1 is asking me every day if it's Halloween yet, so fall must be on the way.
I hear you! I went to school in MA and my favorite time of year is fall. I do wish it got more "fally" here. We live in central Florida and as I type this we are in the middle of a thunderstorm and it is 81 degrees outside. It will get colder, but it isn't until the middle of October or so. But we will do all the normal fall stuff...pumpkins, apples, etc.

CR
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Old 09-23-2007, 11:09 PM
 
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This thread is making me smile. Fall is my favorite season. Once it cools down a bit more we are going to a farm and picking apples and letting the kids pick out a pumpkin. Some one gave us some plaid napkins that remind me of cooler weather. I'm going to take notes as there are lots of very good ideas.
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Old 09-24-2007, 01:53 AM
 
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subbing cause i need some cool ideas too we always do the gourds (tho our usually get drawn on ), and when i have an extra couple bucks, i buy indian corn and we make necklaces out of the kernels here's a linky

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Old 09-25-2007, 02:41 AM
 
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Don't forget to "flip in fall and spin in spring". Your mattress, that is!

I also love to "fall back" with the time change- an extra hour! ( I hate the "spring forward, though...)
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Old 09-25-2007, 07:56 AM
 
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I also love to "fall back" with the time change- an extra hour! ( I hate the "spring forward, though...)
DH and I were talking about this yesterday. I'm all for extra sleep.
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