Well, since it’s a good week into October, and it’s one of my favorite months, and every other blog I read inspires me to goal set, heck, I figured I’d give it a gander.
Fall in northern New England is uniquely beautiful, and I am as domestic as one can get sometimes. Some people say, “Well, aren’t you just Martha Stewart?” to which I respond, “No, I’ve yet to do a jail stint. Yet.” But I bake until my heart is content, can away the goods of later summer and fall, and enjoy the crisp weather and all the beauty it abounds. How poetic of me.
Here’s my list of 10 Things to Do in the Month of October:
1. Go apple picking. We normally have our own apples to pick from our small orchard, and we make enough cider to supply a small army, but this spring wasn’t friendly to most of our fruit trees, so we went apple picking. I haven’t done this with my children in many, many years, and we had a blast yesterday! I can cross this off my list.
2. Photograph both my children for their school photos using my new portrait lens. My kids go to a school where the school doesn’t take yearly photos. Wannabe photographer that I am, I buy lens, and then pretend I know what I’m doing with them. About 5 years ago, I bought a 300mm 2.8 fixed zoom lens for the kids’ skiing. My husband & I decided ‘go big or go home’ was the motto to take good skiing photos. Five years later, I now take photos that rival or are better than some of the people selling their professional shots at these races. Perhaps by the time our daughter is out of college, I’ve have mastered this portrait lens.
3. Bake. Everything apple. Everything Asian pear. And yes, everything pumpkin – my daughter made a pumpkin pie from boiling down her own sugar pumpkin the other day. My little padawan has learned well from her master, she has. And since it will just be me for most of the month of October, lots of my neighbors and friends will become lucky recipients of said baked goodies. As well as the kids at my kids’ school – they love me when they see me because I fuel their baked good desires. I’m their hero.
4. Read. Curl up in a blanket on a dreary day and do nothing but read. I’m currently listening to Hidden Figures, and am loving it. Maybe I can combine being under a blanket, listening to this book, and knitting… multi-tasking at its finest for the functionally lazy and crafty.
5. Knit. Domestic Goddess, I am. With canning and baking and knitting. I’m an old gal at heart. And my daughter’s friends love this feature about me. Last year it was hand-spun alpaca hats. This year it’s scarves. It gets cold where we are. Bloody cold.
6. Take a daily walk through the woods with Queen Fat Lucy, the ever so amazing
bulldog. This pooch has stolen my heart, and depending on the temperature, she’s good for 1/4 to 5 miles. The colder the temp, the farther she can manage. In the Fall, she’s golden around 3 miles. At a slow, fat dog pace. Chunk (one of her luscious nicknames) and I get each other that way.
7. Make seasonal cakes and freeze them. My friends love me. Two of my favorite cake recipes this time of year: Teddies Apple Cake is so simple, but amazing, and this Asian Pear Cake. If you have the time, do yourself the favor and make one, if not both, of these gorgeous cakes. Send me your pictures! I’d ask you to send me some, but I will already have enough to make me the same size as my house.
8. Deliver a yearly supply of grape jelly to my neighbors in exchange for my yearly supply of honey from his apiary. We are blessed enough to live in a co-operative sort of agricultural area. We have apples, peaches, grapes, blueberries, raspberries, asian pears, sour cherries, and plums. When these gems become something in a can, a pie, a cake, a cupcake, whatever… we share with our neighbors and friends, and get vegetables, honey, beef, pork, etc in return. We know how to keep each other fed and happy, and we’ve decided in a zombie apocalypse, we all know which houses we’re running to.
9. Write up honey recipes for my dear high school friend who owns his own honey business, and gave me absurd amounts of honey to experiment with. I wrote a piece in the summer about substituting honey for regular sugar while making blueberry muffins, and I need to actually write out several of the recipes I’ve tweeked or developed using honey. We agreed if he sent me various kinds of honey, I’d send him various recipes for a potential cookbook, but at the every least, a website. Either way, I’ve miserably slacked and need to hold up my end of the promise.
10. Continue to work through the college process with my 17 year old, I-know-it-all daughter. We tour one college and meet with coach. She decides she likes this college better than another, which she thought was her first choice. She asks me if I see her at this college. I say yes, and also give her some realistic advice about choosing a school where the academics are well-known for being tough. In about 2.2 seconds, this conversation digresses into a pouting/shouting argument – pouting on her part, shouting on mine – which doesn’t end for about 20 minutes. I can’t wait to visit the next college with her.
What are your Top 10 Things to Do this month? Let us know in the comments!