I certainly set myself up a tall order by creating an Autumn Bucket List that had 27 items on it to be done between Sept 1st and Nov 27th! A lot of them were small, but still! Sheesh. But hey – I got it done! All 27 mini-goals!
In order of completion:
Buy brown boots: done, 9/1. This has been on my autumn goal list for several years and I still hadn’t managed to do it. Imagine my surprise when this was my first completed goal from the list. Laurence wanted to hit up Goodwill, and I happened to see these. They looked to be the right size, though I couldn’t try them on until I got home (I needed socks, plus I always clean any shoes that aren’t brand new!). They’re a tiny bit tight, but not bad for $10! Probably won’t last more than a season, but hey, I have brown boots!
Participate in RIP: All through September and October, first book finished on 9/2
Annual women’s exam: Done, 9/8
Decorate for Halloween: Done, 9/19 – though I didn’t have a chance to buy a new decoration for our home until two days later. Picture below includes some of my favorite decorations from years past, clustered together on top of the piano this year.
Buy pumpkins: done, 9/23
Have a family fireside night: done, 9/29, and later again on 10/28
Run the Gourdy’s Pumpkin 5K: done, 9/30
Use up at least a quarter (13 cubes) of my old wax melts: 13th used up on 10/6, though admittedly, five of those were tossed after we discovered that their scent gave us all major headaches. Despite this goal being technically done, I continued to work through as much of the old wax as possible.
Find a new dentist and get my teeth cleaned: Not my favorite thing in the world tbh, but it had been about 16 months since my last cleaning (due to changing insurance, my primary dentist then closing their doors, then covid), so it needed to be done. 10/8
Finish the next phase of xeriscaping the front yard: This was originally meant to include both a pathway all along the driveway up to the house, plus a paved seating area. However, due to some extra monetary issues this fall, Jason and I decided to do just the pathway along the driveway. Done 10/23
Drink coffee outside on a chilly morning: our first chilly morning was on 10/24. I made it through about about half my coffee before scooting back inside, haha!
Accessorize with a scarf; Accessorize with one of my beanies: Both of these goals ended up completed on 10/27, the first day we had a major cold front come through (as in, not getting out of the 40s all day). I met with Natalie and showed her to the gorgeous Big Tree that I’ve discussed in the past, because I knew she would find the place exactly what she needed, and I was so stressed that spending some time in nature with her was exactly what I needed. Even though it was 40s-feels-like-30s, it was a wonderful couple of hours spent out there together. (PS – Nat took the photo – and that’s not quite half of the trunk of the tree…)
Make hot chocolate: homemade hot chocolate on 10/28 for national chocolate day! Made over an outdoor fire, no less!
Run the Dia de los Muertos Night Run 5K: done, 10/29
Dress up for Halloween; Celebrate Halloween however covid allows this year: I’ve combined these two because they’re interrelated. And because I had a two-day celebration on the 30th and 31st. It started with a girls’ night out by the Pearl – a small group of hikers walking along the riverwalk with masks, followed by an outdoor dinner by an Ofrenda. I wore my cat domino mask for part of the night. My original intention for Halloween was to go as a black cat and give out candy in a socially-distanced way. However, my hiking group put together a haunted hike at my favorite local trails, so I volunteered to be one of the leaders. The domino mask would have limited my vision too much, so I recycled my skeleton costume from 2018 for the hike (with a sugar skull face mask!). I also put together Tootsie Pop ghosts to stand in a block of foam so that we could give out treats to kids without any contact.
Decorate for Thanksgiving: done 11/3. Actually, I’m not quite sure why I made this a goal. This literally involves removing all the Halloween decor that doesn’t also extend to general autumn decor. The only Thanksgiving-only decoration we have is a wicker cornucopia that is on its last legs… In any case, Jason and I put the Halloween stuff away while we waited for election results to roll in. (That first night. Because, you know, it took five days to get an actual result.)
Prep Christmas cards: done 11/10
Donate blood: done 11/16
Host a personal celebration for the Rhythm of War release: RoW released on 11/17. Unfortunately, I woke up at 4am that day, but on the bright side, that meant I could download the audiobook early! (A big deal when at the last release, the Audible servers literally crashed due to the number of downloads!) I started my listen from after the pre-release chapters, and continued until I could go to BN when they opened. Got my copy, spent some time talking to the folks there (also big fans who had their own copies set aside!), and headed home. Pretty much spent the next two days doing nothing BUT read, but Jason made me chocolate chip cookies and I delighted in those while ignoring the rest of the world for two days. Heh. Oh! And of course I dressed up for the release in my Kaladin/Syl shirt!
Plan and begin buying Christmas gifts: Took longer than I wanted, but Jason and I finally started making up lists and purchases on 11/21.
Celebrate Thanksgiving however covid allows; Make traditional Thanksgiving foods if celebrations must be immediate family only: Just like at Halloween, I’m combining these last two goals as they’re interrelated. Covid definitely affected how things had to be handled this year, and we had no major family gathering. Instead, I spent the day before Thanksgiving in a pre-holiday hike with five wonderful ladies. On the day proper, my family made all the traditional foods that my family wanted. My requests included turkey breast, craptastic store-bought stuffing (ha!), and cranberry orange muffins (which I made myself! The only thing I made. Because I am definitely not the house chef!). There were, of course, a lot more than just those foods. And plenty of leftovers.
Beyond food, we watched the Macy’s parade in the morning, and then football all afternoon. We FaceTimed with Morrigan in the evening, took family photos, etc. Then the day after Thanksgiving, my mom, stepdad, and sister came to the house for an outdoor, socially-distant celebration. We all brought our own food and sat in different corners of our garage, with the door open. (It was pouring rain, or we’d have sat on the deck!) With masks on, we were practically yelling our conversations across the room, ha! But nonetheless, it was a nice couple of hours. Sadly, I didn’t get any pictures. Oh well. I’m just so glad I got to see everyone. I’ve only seen the three of them each twice since the pandemic began.
This project was a lot of fun and most of these goals on here were 100% doable even if there were tons of them. I like busy autumns! And I think I’m going to continue making roughly seasonable goals for myself by drawing and coloring them in, the same way I did for summer and fall. Though…winter won’t have nearly so many. Because come on. Heh.