“All the lives we ever lived and all the lives to be
are full of trees and changing leaves…”
To the lighthouse – Virginia Woolf
Today in the northern hemisphere is the Autumn Equinox, the time when daytime and night-time are of equal length. A time when the days start getting shorter, and we think about hunkering down for the long autumn and winter months ahead. For me this time of year always makes me think about the cyclical nature of the seasons – the hibernation before the warmer days come around again.
We all know how important it is to make time for yourself to support your mental health; so, today’s post is all about selfcare ideas for easing into the season!
In the UK and USA the new series of The Great British Bake Off starts this week, and that’s always a great motivator to get those cake pans out, and to fire up the oven. I don’t know about you, but for me I find baking very therapeutic. It doesn’t matter how good or bad you are at baking (I didn’t inherit the Victoria Sponge making gene from my mother unfortunately) what matters is that you’re engrossing yourself in the whole experience. Give it a go, try my favourite autumn recipes, Easy Carrot Cake.
“I didn’t inherit the Victoria Sponge-making-gene from my mother unfortunately.”
Drink something warm and sweet
Well there is only one thing that is warm and sweet that you can drink this time of year, PSL; for the uninitiated that is a Pumpkin Spiced Latte courtesy of our friendly Seattle-based coffee shop. If you aren’t a fan of this diabetes-inducing beverage (and I count myself in that group) then why not try a new fruit tea, or a coffee style. I like to go to the nether world between sweet and bitter with a nice equal part mocha! Alternatively, a nice warm cider round the firepit or a campfire all wrapped up in a lovely warm jumper is perfect for an autumn evening.
Our taste buds are often the gateway to memories, along with smells, so drinking or eating something can often evoke fond memories of days gone by.
“Autumn’s sweet whisper requires a good book and a warm drink”
Read a new book
I have deliberately put this beneath the drinking something warm and sweet, because in my world the two compliment each other perfectly. There is nothing like snuggling up with a warm drink and a new book.
Now, the most recent book I’ve read is called Skint Estate written by Cash Carraway and tells the true story of a working single mum trying to make ends meet. It’s both uplifting and inspiring in equal measure, as well as being an horrific indictment of life in 21st century London as a single mum. If you get the chance give it a go because it’s beautifully honest in its writing.
Much like the baking; it doesn’t matter if you’re good or bad at it getting creative is a chance to express yourself. Why not try crochet or knitting; neither of which is reserved for just your grandma these days. Both are gaining more and more popularity with a much younger audience, with numerous YouTube channels providing all the instruction you need if you’re a novice. I had an idea of how to crochet, and I could knit, but thanks to YouTubers like Bella Coco I got back into crochet. I’ve made various baby blankets and changing mats, and I’m currently working on an autumn-colour inspired cardigan!
My other half started drawing in lockdown as w way of coping with the uncontrollable. He has developed his style and has a few fans on the socials; and the one thing I’ve noticed is that when he’s ‘creating’ he is much calmer, and in the zone. He will say himself that it gives him peace of mind and a chance to relax when he gets the pens out!
Bring the outdoors in doors
I don’t believe that Springtime should take all the glory when it comes to bringing nature inside. Autumn can hold its own in that department too, as it’s a great time of year for bringing nature indoors. Why not pick up some fallen pinecones, leaves and other berries on your walks and make them into a beautiful door wreath. Wreaths are not just for Christmas you know! You can also create a display in your hallway with pumpkins and candles. Autumn is the bountiful months of the harvest, when everything is gathered in, so make the most of it!
Doing little things to occupy your mind, nourish your soul, bring out your happy and make your heart sing are key to creating your own self-care routine.