Sometimes we all need a little spark of joy in life to take our minds off the things.
And with nature ablaze with a golden glow and thoughts turning to hot cups of hot cocoa, making the most of this beautiful time of year can really lift your spirits and doesn’t have to cost much.
Inspired by the crunch of fallen leaves underfoot and mid-quarter on the horizon, we’re all focused on some fall fun right now. Here are six cheap and cheerful things to do this fall …
1. Take a wonderful walk in the woods
Being at one with nature is good for the mind, body and soul, whether it’s in the local park or a wood or a forest a little further away. From wandering through the moist and earthy aromas, to counting conkers with the kids and filling a backpack with homemade sarnyas, there are so many ways to savor the season with a good step in the trees. If you need inspiration, The National Trust and Forestry England have websites dedicated to autumn walks.
2. Feed the birds
Happiness starts at home, but looking out the window and into the garden can be a game changer for our feathered friends right now. Keep them well fed and you will be rewarded with their happy chirps and a joyful mood.
As Eric Michels of CJ Wildlife, who offers a wide range of bird feeding options, puts it: “Getting closer to nature by encouraging wildlife in your garden is an ideal way to increase your well-being during the fall and winter. – and feeding the birds is a great place to start. “
As we head into the colder months, she says birds need to find high-fat food sources to help them survive, so opt for high-calorie, protein-rich foods to keep them energetic and strong, like balls of high-quality fat, lard, mealworms, and peanut-rich options.
3. Plan a day or night at the museum
From Black History Month programs to contemporary art exhibits and behind-the-scenes tours, you’ll be amazed at how many free exhibits (a donation is always welcome) are at your fingertips. Check out websites like Money Saving Expert, which lists free museums and art galleries, and the plot of a day of culture, inspiration, and fun.
4. Grow your own vegetables
What could be healthier and more satisfying than eating something you’ve been feeding from the point of view of the day? And right now is a great time to start cultivating yours.
“Although the weather is getting colder as we head into autumn, there is still a lot to do in the garden to nourish your soul and help both your garden and kitchen to bloom during the winter,” says Daniel. Carruthers of Cultivar Greenhouses.
“October is a great time to start growing seasonal vegetables, such as garlic, onions, broad beans, broccoli and Brussels sprouts, but perhaps one of the easiest to grow is potatoes,” suggests Carruthers. “And what’s better than always having a fresh supply of your favorite potato varieties on hand?”
Observe the weather and keep young plants stored in a warm place, such as a greenhouse, cold frame, or warm windowsill indoors, to protect them from freezing as winter approaches.
5. Throw a bottle fondue party
We’ve embraced 1970s home decor trends and enjoyed the nostalgic fashion revival, so why not step up with a cheese fondue party to channel that retro vibe?
A brilliant excuse to get your closest friends to catch up, the ingredients couldn’t be simpler. For this fun party meal, think of mismatched boho chic glasses and tableware, a heated heavy skillet, skewer sticks, raw veggies, Swiss cheese, crusty bread, and they all carry a bottle. Groovy.
6. Prepare the family (or your inner child) for the pumpkin carving
If your kids think Halloween is a blast, don’t forget that adults can have just as much fun as youngsters, plus all those goodies.
Make the most of the days leading up to the night of fear by going to the local farmers market (a delightful treat in itself) and taking those melted pumpkins home. And once you’ve done some carving, she continues the fun in the kitchen: she thinks pumpkin soup, pumpkin pie, pumpkin cheesecake, and even a homemade pumpkin spiced latte. Delightful.