It is September. So I officially have fall fever. Sad, but true. Something about being able to wear my jeans & flannel while drinking a pumpkin coffee out by a fire, without sweating to death, just makes me feel so warm and cozy inside. I’m basic and I love it! #sorrynotsorry
So since we are headed into fall (yay!), I’m giving you my checklist of activities you HAVE to do with your child this season. Some you may think “duh”, but others may inspire you to try something a little different. Enjoy!
- Go to a farm.
My family has been going to a farm near us for years. I’ve been bringing my daughter there ever since she was old enough to wobble. The most obvious thing to do there is go apple picking, but there is really so much more than that. The fall is an amazing time to visit a farm because not only do you get to feed and see all the animals, but you can do so without 100-degree heat and the smell of pigs. A lot of times they offer hay rides, pumpkin picking, and more. The one we go to has a big playground that my daughter and her cousins love to run through. Plus, you can’t beat the fresh air and the smell of apple cider donuts.
- Make apple jam.
After you get all those apples, you gotta use them up! Truthfully, I have never been a fan of apple pie (I know, sinful.), I much prefer to make homemade apple jam. Whenever I can get my daughter involved in the kitchen it is so much fun. Not only does it allow for some fun and messy play, it really gives her pride to make the food she eats. Not to mention, she loves learning about where the food comes from. So the fact that we can make fresh jam from farm to table ingredients is pretty cool. It’s also amazingly delicious. I’ve made up my own very simple recipe that just requires boiling down the apples with some sugar and cinnamon. But you can find lots of fun recipes right on Pinterest.
- Have an intention fire (and make smores!).
For the past three years, my family has made an effort to have as many backyard fires as we can. It’s one of the weekend joys we have. My daughter and fiancé collect all the wood and we get ready to set our intentions for the season/year. We get some paper and each of us writes down what we are grateful for and what we hope to accomplish. (I write my daughter’s as she dictates it to me.) Then we throw them into the fire and enjoy a night under the stars. My fiancé’s parents live out in the country and it really is breathtaking to experience. There is something so grounding about sitting around a fire on a brisk fall night. And you can’t forget the smores! (My daughter and I make sure of that!)
- Roast pumpkin seeds.
First you’ve got to carve the pumpkins. This is standard. However, unlike some other households, we let our daughter go at the pumpkin (not with the knife!). We get our hands dirty and gush through the inside slop. As much as it makes a mess, it really is the most fun part. Not to mention, it makes you feel like a little kid again. We set the seeds aside for after carving. Then after we’ve made our spooky pumpkins, we take all the seeds out, wash them, and season them. Then you just pop them in the oven and you’ve got a fun snack. I am a fan of sugar and cinnamon, while my other two enjoy the salty version with chili & garlic powder.
- Go on a hike.
We live in the Northeast and love us some fall foliage. You may think your little one is not up for it, but you may be pleasantly surprised. There is a beautiful park near us with a 3-mile trail that my daughter rocked out! And she was only 3 at the time! There were so many fun things to see along the way that we didn’t really think about the distance. We saw parts of caves and waterfalls. We also brought ample snacks and water to stay energized. I’d suggest starting off small and finding a mile hike near some fun attractions to try it out.
- Go to a festival.
Ahhh nothing says fall like a good autumn festival. They definitely are not overrated. From fresh apple cider to live music and local food, it really is a fun and family-friendly place to spend a few hours on a Saturday. Most of the time entry is free and even if you don’t want to purchase anything from the vendors, some time outside enjoying the fall foliage can be one of those last cherished days outside before the cold sets in.
So now you’ve got some things to check off your list in the next few months. I’ve personally gotten myself so excited that I think I’m going to go pick up a pumpkin spice latte.
And remember, even if you don’t get the chance to experience all that you want to this season, enjoy each moment as it comes.
Living in the moment for one awesome memory is better than doing ten things that you can hardly even remember.