Each Fall, I am used to getting ready. As a teacher, I would get ready to welcome new students with their fresh school supplies and eager faces.
As a mom, I would help to get my own brood ready with new clothes as they prepared to begin another year of music lessons, or sports. sometimes we had to prepare for high school and even university. So we began with finding a space for packing away the old and ushering in the new.
Here are some things to remember as you prepare to get the most out of your short Autumn months…
- Sweep up, put away garden pots, trim shrubs & fertilize. Your trees and shrubs need a good drink of water to sustain them over the winter.
- Purchase bulbs & plant them right away. Fall is a great time to dig in the dirt one last time before frost sets in. One spring morning , you’ll awaken to sprouting flowers and remember that you went to the trouble of planting those bulbs back in Fall. “ Oh yeah..!” I’ve been known to say…
- Pluck those crabapples for making jelly. Soooooo good! Although this is a bit of a messy process, it’s worth it.
- Pack away summer clothes. This includes putting away open toe shoes and flip flops. The weather in fall is so unpredictable. Two days ago I drove through a massive snowstorm with trucks in the ditch all over the place, to arrive 9 hours later at home where the sun was shining brightly and I didn’t even need a jacket! But alas, you no longer need those shorts and the summer “whites” so pack ’em away…and take out those cozy Fall sweaters.
- Stock up on tea. Or coffee. Or versions of hot chocolate. In Fall, I drink at least one cup a day and really enjoy the experience while the Fall winds howl outside.
- Find some galoshes. I love that word that no one seems to use anymore. Rubber boots folks. A raincoat and a pair of boots is good to have on hand for that unpredictable weather.
- Put out the snacks for birds. Buy suet balls and stock your bird feeders, so the birds know where to go for supper. Once you start this however, you’ll need to keep it up all winter, as they will depend on your kindness.
- Try pickling or canning. The supplies are usually in your local food market buy they get snapped up quickly. Mason jars are a must for this. Try pickling items from your garden like carrots and beets. Can peaches, apricots, cherries etc. See the link above for a Beginner’s Guide.
- Change up the bedding. Summer is hot so a top sheet is often enough but as temperatures dive, we need thicker comforters and quilts. I grab the down quilts, fluff them up and put them on the end of each bed. Sometimes I also fit the bed with fleece or flannel sheets for extra warmth.
- Make a first draft of your Christmas List. Yes, I said it. As a mother of 6, there is no way I could ever start shopping in December. With a starter list, I can get a head start every time I am in a Pharmacy ( deodorants, special shampoos, loofahs etc. for the stockings) beginning in September. As I write this, I have already bought one gift for my 3rd son. If I go the mall, I always make sure to stop in to one of my kid’s favourite stores, and purchase one thing. Starting early even if it’s a book or just wrapping paper, means that you will not only beat the lines of crazy in December, but that you’ll have the best chance of getting the items you need. The longer you wait, the higher the chance of the item being sold out.
I hope your preparations go smoothly and that you get ready to enjoy the gifts of Autumn. What do YOU do to prepare?