I Skipped the PSL and Went Straight to Caramel Brulée

Autumn’s been great and all, and always will be, but I avoided all things pumpkin this year. Why? While various reasons- I was holding onto summer like it was the last time it would come around (only 7 more months till June folks), refusing to dress appropriately and then complained how cold I was constantly, pretending my Midterms didn’t mean the that it was the middle of the semester…

So why with the launch of those iconic Starbucks cups did I jump on the bandwagon and immediately order a tall non-fat half sweet caramel brulée latte (besides the obvious truth as I type this out that I am extremely high maintenance when it comes to the few instances a month I allow myself to spend more than $3 on a cup of coffee?)

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Winter is coming (what is that a mainstream pop-culture reference or something) and unlike my utter avoidance of the last change of the seasons, I actually get little flutters in my chest about the upcoming months. Yeah it’s cold and yeah that sucks and I’m sure I’ll regret this post a couple times over the next six months but I’m a true Canadian, and sometimes winter just calls my name louder than autumn does; maybe it comes from growing up in a city with a two week autumn and a seven month winter.

I never wrote about my favorite things about fall even in my blog-all-the-time-October stint, mostly because it would have come out like “NOPE FALL ISN’T A THING WHERE IS MY BIKINI?” But winter? It holds a soft spot in my heart.

  1. Winter means Christmas and Christmas means home. I made the choice five years ago to move to a city that was not a direct flight to my hometown- it’s a country away and several hundred dollars and grumpy customs agents. I do not get to go home on weekends; I get to go home two or three times a year, and I’ll meet my family at competitions across the continent or they visit me at college otherwise. Unlike autumn, where college kids happily skip home for fall break or Thanksgiving I put on my “Foreign” hat and tag along with a friend to celebrate with their families for Homecoming, long weekends, and the rest. But December? Uh-huh nope that’s my time. I get to go home. It might only be for eight or ten days, but it’s home for Christmas with my family and every year it means so much more to me to able to spend that time with my family and friends.
  2. The Holiday Food. Peppermint? Chocolate? Combined? Into baking?? Well, okay let me buy bigger jeans. I love everything about this season’s eats. I love turkey and mashed potatoes and cranberry sauce, more than I love burgers on the Forth of July. I’ll take a glass of wine for New Years over a cold beer for Labor Day weekend, and I’ll take a weekend of creating family recipes over indulging on Half-Off Halloween candy (I mean, I’ll still do beer and candy, but one can still have standards preferences).
  3. Head Space. Unlike all the fall breaks that still involve assignments, papers, readings, and general other things we procrastinate on, the break we get over the holidays is ACTUALLY a break. The between-the-semesters mental rest is so unbelievably needed- we come out of finals week every December foggy eyed and with a waning headache and get to spend the next several weeks forgetting everything we learned filling our minds with positive memories, good books, and happy vibes overall.
  4. Snow. Obviously I have appreciated the glory that is the leaves changing this year, like every year. I believe the Midwest does autumn best. But snow? There isn’t a “first leaf that changed” like there is a “first snowfall”. Snow means skiing and snowball fights and snow angels and snow men. Snow looks like Christmas lights- twinkling, and calm and peaceful. There’s always that awkward transition between autumn and winter when they leaves have fallen and the trees look bare and brown- they needs a little “frosting” (yeah that’s a quote from How To Lose a Guy In 10 Days judge me).
  5. Maybe just maybe I’ll stop pretending it isn’t getting cold outside and will actually bust out my sweaters and jackets and cute scarves (yes I own cute winter things my trusty spandex has their limitations).

Until the first snow actually falls and until I start my Christmas shopping and until I even register for next semesters classes, I will do my best to appreciate all that is autumn. I doubt I’ll get my pumpkin baking on- I think that ship has sailed for the season, along with dressing up for Halloween and haunted houses. Before I get too cold however to remember that winter sucks, I’ll appreciate this season in transition more than I did the last

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