“Autumn is a second spring where every leaf is a flower.” — Albert Camus

I am full-on fall this year, my friends, full freaking on. In fact, if it gets any fallier around here, my husband Frank* might faint.

First off, I have my decorative pumpkins sitting nice and neat on my dining room table. I bought them on pure whim last year at T.J. Maxx and I was pret … ty excited to pull them out and put them on display.

Granted, as I was buying bacon the other day, I was a lit … tle disappointed to see that nearly the identical pumpkins are now on sale at Kroger. Nothing against Kroger, but I don’t love that my home decoration efforts don’t exceed grocery store standards — they do sell pickled eggs and pickled snack bologna there, after all. Still, I’m trying to appreciate my little pump-i-kins for all they’re worth.

Second, my mums are planted, so the landscaping is now filled with vivid pops of color. I’m not a foddershock kind of girl, though will admit that “foddershock” might be the coolest word in the English language, nor am I a bale ‘o hay/pumpkin display person. But I do love me some mums. In part because if you can spell the word “chrysanthemum” without any trouble, you know you are pretty much killing it in the smarty pants department.

Please note: I had to look it up.

Since mums are practically no work, I can now refocus on my poor house plants. Oh, but they get ignored in the summer months. A little water on Tuesdays and that is all the attention they get from me. But this morning, I fertilized all of them. I even wiped down their leaves to get rid of the dust. I bet that felt good.

Actually, I always wonder how plants feel when they get fertilized, don’t you? I mean, when the nutrients hit them, does it make them exhale in a yoga way? Do they feel like they’re getting a feast akin to Thanksgiving? Or are they, in general, starving and so just getting a bit of relief?

This past weekend, I did the biannual switcharoo of the wardrobes as well. My closet is now filled with fall/winter, and spring/summer has been sent upstairs.

I’m not sure if I’m alone in this, but there is something about the wardrobe switcharoo that makes me feel tremendously responsible and accomplished. I re-fold everything in my drawers, get rid of dry-cleaning plastic, pick up hangers that have fallen behind the racks. This year, I even organized William’s (i.e. Frank’s) ties according to color and style. Am I the only one who gets a kick out of this? It’s like I’m clearing out this muck that I wasn’t really conscious was there, but I’m relieved anyway.

And finally, I made a big ol’ pot of chili. Because of course I did! No self-respecting fall is complete without one, is it? I have this tremendous recipe (look up “beef chili” on bonappeti.com) that uses four types of chiles (guajillo, ancho, pasilla and chipotle — all of which I found at Walmart), so that it’s spicy in a warm, flavorful way. And because I made it yesterday, it should be just about perfect when I heat it up tonight. When I make Frank watch TV with me.

So, as I sit here in my sweatshirt and the doggies cuddle together in their bed, I wish you a happy fall. The holidays are coming. The house is warm. We can finally go running outside without feeling like we’re melting. All is right with the world.

P.S. Just kidding. My husband’s name isn’t Frank. But changing it was worth it for the alliteration (sorry, not sorry).


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