I have decided to start calling this season "autumn" instead of "fall." I have always said fall when discussing, this, the best season of all four of our Midwestern seasons. But autumn just sounds that touch classier, snootier, douchier that I'm undertaking an effort to say "autumn."
So autumn it is. This weather is glorious. Highs in the 70's, lows in the 50's, sunny, mild, perfection. So I've been enjoying the week off of blogging. I've done a lot of cooking lately: pumpkin bread, roasted chicken and potatoes, southwestern beef stew in the crock pot with cornbread and tonight we had Thai chicken in a spicy peanut sauce with brown rice. For some reason autumn makes me want to cook more. I savor the delicious spices and flavors of the season. I break the crock pot out because I'm lazy and it's so easy. And all the fall produce, I love squash and apples and sweet potatoes and pumpkin and all the nutmeg, allspice, cloves of the season.
Right now I'm drinking a cup of coffee with cinnamon vanilla creamer and writing and uploading photos to Flickr and half watching Grey's Anatomy. Just my regular life, but enhanced by the fact that fall, I mean autumn, is here. It's finally here. The windows are open, I just put the heavier comforter back on our bed and last weekend we went to two art fairs, the Overland Park Fall Festival and the spectacular annual Plaza Art Fair.
Last Saturday we went to the Overland Park Fall Festival. I've had a beaded jewelry booth at the OP Fall Fest for the last six years, but I took this year off. I needed a break. I wasn't inspired. I wasn't interested in making jewelry or selling to strangers or hauling my wares around town, or spending all weekend making more earrings. So I liberated myself and I 'm loving this autumn like I haven't in years. Don't mistake my sense of liberation for disliking shows or making jewelry, I just burned out a bit. I made myself a necklace last week and it was a great feeling. No pressure, just easy. And I liked feeling that way again.
So this visit to the OP Fall Fest was brief and fun and free. Lots of lovely handcrafted items. I bought a cute floral fabric purse with a lovely braided strap. We ate kettle corn. We watched a marching band. We observed potato chips being handcrafted. We cheered at the parade. And it was just good.
Sunday morning was crisp and sunny. We met Tara and Mike and Miss Madeline on the Plaza. They got in a very long line to procure coffee beverages, my first pumpkin spice latte of autumn (woop woop,) and the five of us browsed.
Sunday morning is the only time I'm going to the Plaza Art Fair ever again. It isn't crowded, it isn't shoulder to shoulder with other browsers, you can actually get inside of the booths and look and observe and talk to the artists. But by 12:30 the place is full. There are dogs and strollers and people dressed in their most creative elegant gear, or scrubby jean cut offs, but mostly dressed with dapper flair.
We didn't buy any art. But we did buy some lunch. Ran into some old friends, and procured many many free postcards to take home, my own little free art collection. See my couch gallery below.
Last weekend was a perfect fall weekend. Plenty of mellow, lingering time with friends and family, time outside looking at beautiful creative work from amazing craftspeople and artisans, at least two pumpkin spice lattes and ending with my book club meeting where we discussed one of my favorite books, East of Eden. It was a great weekend, and did I mention relaxing. This coming weekend will be about the opposite. I'm spending all day Friday and Saturday earning my fund development certificate in class, a long two days of class. But the highlight of the weekend will be Saturday night, the VAMPIRE WEEKEND CONCERT!!! I might be posting about that, oh you know I will.
What are your weekend plans, and more importantly what's your favorite season? Because if you say anything other than autumn, you crazy!
Some photos by me, some photos by Joe Sands, whom I love more than pumpkin spice lattes, promise.