Sweater Weather

Is it Pumpkin Spice Time Yet?

I like warm weather and long days as much as the next person, but I have my limit.

I crawled into bed at precisely 8:45 pm last night, because that’s about when it’s completely dark up here in Maine. I wanted to head up earlier and read my book, but for some reason, I have this idea in my head that doing that just isn’t decent. As soon as I got situated and lost in my novel, a bug flew into my eye. Then another one almost made it up my left nostril. It was too cool for the air conditioners that have been humming for months but too hot to close the windows, and I began to feel itchy all over.

Then this morning, after I took the time to smooth out my hair, it immediately sprung back up so it resembled a Brillo pad shaped like a traffic cone.

And so I’m ready to say this out loud: I’m sick of this. I’m sick of boob sweat, crotch sweat, frizzy hair, and the fan and AC drying out my eyeballs. I’m sick of feeling like I have to soak up every moment of summer by enjoying the outdoors. I’m done. It’s pumpkin spice time.

Once summer rolls around, after all those months of winter, there’s so much pressure to do it all: Go to every outdoor concert! Take the family camping! Eat every meal outside and get stung by several flying bugs! Don't forget to make a trip to the waterpark and hit the beach as many times as you can, so you can get all sticky with sunscreen and sweat then roll around in the sand and spend an hour vacuuming your car and trying to get it out of your butt crack. I’m through!

I like summer when it starts, and I welcome the change of seasons just like anyone else. Fresh air, more sunshine, and longer days are great. But I have my limit and I have absolutely reached it. Let’s button it up already and not feel like we have to live outdoors. Fall is the best season of all and I am so ready for all it has to offer.

There is something about waking up in the morning and feeling that fresh air and pulling on your favorite sweater or sweatshirt. The summer days of barely wearing any clothing so you don’t melt are gone; our comfy sweats are here to stay (for a few months, anyway).

Can’t you just picture it now? You’re roaming the aisles of your favorite store, stroking the flannel sheets, plaid pillows, and decorative gourds while you hold your pumpkin spice latte and wonder how many pumpkins you should get for your front steps. It’s a vibe, right?

Do you want to see a bunch of happy moms? Head to Target on a crisp fall day and just look around. There are those of us who live for this moment and nothing can break our candle-smelling, wreath-buying high.

Autumn is the time to dig out all your favorite pie, cake, and bread recipes and make your home smell like a damn bakery. We become obsessed with crockpot meals and blankets. We don’t need an excuse to laze around on a Sunday because hey, it’s fall, and recently we were sweating our buns off all summer taking the kids everywhere. This is our time to recharge.

Sliding on your favorite boots and scarf and heading to the orchard (even if you don’t pick apples) to eat donuts and stock up on cider is nostalgic. The changing leaves take you back to the days when you were a kid and you want to gather some up and go home and press them between wax paper just as you did in elementary school.

Autumn has the best movies too — Hocus Pocus, Good Will Hunting, You’ve Got Mail, Fantastic Mr. Fox. Just give me my sofa, these movies, and some pumpkin bread and leave me alone for the day. Life literally doesn't get better than that.

So go stock up on candy corn, fire up your slow cooker, go to bed earlier, and by all means, get all the pumpkin spice you can find. Before you know it, fall will be over — so enjoy it while you can.

Katie Bingham-Smith is a full-time freelance writer living in Maine with her three teens and two ducks. When she’s not writing she’s probably spending too much money online and drinking Coke Zero.