Happy Autumn. It’s a bright chilly autumn morning. The sun is shining, the sky is blue. The leaves are falling and I have a comforting oat cappuccino by my side. We’ve made to October friends. Most of my September was spent in the Provencal sunshine so it’s time to dig out the cosy jumpers, reset the central heating and embrace the season. Time for some October goals.
01. GETTING TO KNOW MY NEW OLYMPUS PEN
Oh Happy Day! I’ve treated myself to a gorgeous Olympus Pen E-PL9 in white (of course) and so far it’s magic. It won’t replace my Nikon 3200 but I wanted a more compact “blogger” camera that has all the functionality I’m used to with the DSLR but takes up less room in my handbag. It’s touch screen with wifi connectivity to the Olympus app. That’s my favourite thing so far – importing high quality photos to my phone with just a few clicks – and no wires.
I tried it out in a restaurant yesterday. Always tricky taking decent photos of food in restaurants and remaining discreet. The Pen is perfect for this. Delighted. So I’ll be spending October getting to know my new friend.
02 COMFORT COOKING
Autumn is always a tricky time for me. I’m good with salads through the summer but the October chills and the comfort eats always come hand in hand. This year I’m determined to get more creative with flavours and ingredients. Mr B and I are both meat-free so it’s mainly a plant/fish based diet. I need to learn to love green leafy veg more, and he needs to love beans and pulses more – then we’ll be fine. So that’s what we’re working on. I’m a big fan of the Deliciously Ella app which is full of delicious wholesome comfort food that I’m hoping will get me through the winter months and it will include regular portions of pumpkin soup and avocado toast. Also have you been watching Jamie Oliver’s Meat Free Meals. Some great ideas over there.
03 LAKE ADVENTURES
It’s been a few years since we ventured up to the Lake District so this month we’re planning a mini break in our favourite Hillthwaite House Hotel. Still finalising the details, trying to avoid half term, and organise some good weather. But I’m excited to visit one of our favourite places, walk the Fells (some of them) and eat Grasmere gingerbread.
04 KICKING LEAVES
I love North Wales in October. It’s the prettiest place to spend time. Woodlands, mountains, beach walks. We have it all here. National Trust Bodnant Garden and Plas Newydd are always on my October list, as well as our new discovery Plas Cadnant. Honestly there’s so many places I want to visit, I’m worried there many not be enough days in October.
05 IT’S COMING
If you think it’s too soon to mention the C word, you might want to close your ears now. One of my October goals every year is to complete our Christmas shopping. I say complete – because I always start much earlier buying bits and bobs when I see them. Here’s the thing. If you get it all done early – you will feel super pleased with yourself, you will be able to gloat when everyone is dashing around last minute, and you will enjoy mooching round the shops in November and December so much more because you’re not under pressure. Try it. PS I just bought my Christmas Cards. And it feels good.
What are your October goals? Here’s hoping for sunny days, hot chocolates, and a stress-free autumn for everyone.