In no particular order:
1. Pumpkin EVERYTHING
I will eat/drink/smell/ingest pretty much anything pumpkin. Faves include pumpkin ice cream, pumpkin butter, pumpkin muffins, pumpkin coffee, pumpkin lotion...at the risk of sounding like a Forrest Gump character, I'll stop there, but I really love pumpkin. Unfortunately, most of these wonderful treats are only available seasonally, but I definitely make the best of it - it's only the first of the month and I already have pumpkin ice cream, pumpkin cream cheese spread and pumpkin spice coffee at my disposal. Now I just need some actual pumpkins for carving!
2. Beautiful Trees
I hope for your sake that you also live in New England at this time of year (and I hope that, unlike me, you get to leave for the snowy winter). For all the complaining I might do about the long, cold winters, New England really has the right idea about Autumn. Within the last week most trees have started to turn beautiful shades of mustard and burnt orange and it won't be long until they're crimson and brown and eventually scatter on the ground. This process is actually quite lovely considering what we're witnessing is the leaves dying.
3. County Fairs
There's a local fair around here where pretty much everyone goes this time of year and I can always count myself among that crowd. The older I get, the more I go only for nostalgic reasons (I can't bring myself to ride the rides much anymore - how can temporary rides set up quickly by an unsavory looking character in a dirty tank top be safe?) but I still have a great time petting farm animals, eating carnival foods, marveling at the winner of the largest pumpkin contest and rooting for my favorite racing pig (look it up, you won't regret it).
4. Apple Picking
There is literally nothing as peaceful as a lush, green apple orchard and it's even better when you've arrived at it on a horse drawn hayride. Apple picking is a quintessentially New England thing to do and it really rings in the Autumn. I plan to go this year and to enjoy the adorable country farm store and eat a delicious apple cider donut before taking my photo in the pumpkin patch and daydreaming about the incredible apple pie I'll be making in the days following. It sounds like a daydream, but in October I can make it a reality!
Best weather of the year, hands down. Not too hot, not too cold. You can wear a sweater or not, it's your choice. Feel like layering dresses and sweaters or wearing a knit hat? Go for it. Crisp breezes punctuate each afternoon while the bright sunny skies wrap you up in October goodness.
Halloween is my favorite holiday and not only because there's free candy and fun costumes, although those are both major factors. I love the tradition and the grandeur of the actual holiday and Halloween parties are always the best of the year. When else can you see copious corgis in costume? As many times as I see it, I will always laugh at a dog in a hot dog costume.
7. Fall Clothes
I don't know what it is about autumn, but it always makes me want to buy new clothes, shoes and accessories. Maybe it's the back-to-school vibes, but whether I need them or not I always end up with new jeans, a pair or two of boots and new additions to my scarf collection. It's definitely my favorite season to shop for (sweater dresses? yes, please!) and the fact that I can layer clothing and wear cardigans comfortably without breaking a sweat is all the proof I need that October is the best month for fashion.
8. The Acceptance of 'Weirdness'
I once went into a coffee shop around Halloween and my server complimented my "costume"; problem was, I wasn't wearing one. She took my floor length tiered dress and the daisy in my hair as a Flower Child costume (her words) and I smiled and thanked her for the kind words. What else can you really do in that situation? All the other servers were in costume and, since it was the week of Halloween, it wasn't unusual to see people dressed up. While she was mistaken, I do love the fact that had I actually been in costume on a random day near Halloween it would have been welcomed with open arms. Pull that stuff any other time of year and you're suddenly a weirdo. People love weird outfits, wigs and accessories within the confines of Halloween season and while I wish it was okay all year long, I kinda love that they'll accept "weirdness" no questions asked.
9. Crunching Leaves
Is there anything more satisfying than stepping on a perfectly crunchy leaf only to hear its crispy being fade away under your sole with a final "cruuuunch"? Yeah, I didn't think so. I will actually often walk out of my way to step on a great crunchy leaf for that very satisfaction. The noise it makes is definitely in my top 10 favorite sounds (maybe a future list post?) right along with the noise your computer's recycling bin makes when you empty it. If you haven't tried it, step on a crunchy leaf today!
10. Spooky Vibes
Probably the best part of October is the overall spooky vibes coming from Halloween and related activities. While not an integral part of the month, they're there if you want to feel them and I most definitely do. Scary movie nights, ghost tours, trips to Salem, MA (the Halloween capital of the world!), late night walks, witchy fashion - it's all part of the season and it must be embraced...if you dare.