• Culture and Entertainment

    The Book Spooktacular Autumn Favorites Tag

    I’m doing the tag that Ashley from the Mad Dragon Hatter created which I found on Ink Castles blog (my lucidity right now is STELLAR as you can see). Well, I do like fall/autumn because I love pumpkin, ginger and spice, molasses-y goodies, but um, all the sad, scary, and sinister is usually what I avoid, except curiously, in murder mystery novels (but those can freak me out don’t get me wrong). I also HATE skulls (like I don’t even like reading/typing that word) and bones born of my life-long phobia (I wouldn’t call it a phobia now, I feared them so when I was younger, that my mood was affected if I saw animal bones y’all). I do sparkles, princesses, and glamor for dressing up for Halloween; it’s clearly not really my holiday. So, bear that in mind.
    1) movie with all the autumn vibes
    Any vintage murder mystery, actually many vintage movies seem to fit autumn period. Let’s go with Laura though.
    2) song that you associate with autumn
    Oh, and I’m also not the biggest music person. I do think any minor-key or sentimental or folk-songs type music fits fall.
    3) book with ghosts
    The Ghosts of Tupelo Landing. Not really a fall book, and the ghosts were NOT my favorite thing, not the kind of magical realism I like, I’d prefer them more in actual fantasy.
    4) scariest movie you’ve seen
    I’m going to go with the 2015 BBC And Then There Were None. It has to be the most disturbing thing I’ve every finished, I’m usually long gone before then.
    5) the best autumn quote

    “I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.”

    ― L. M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables

    6) book cover with all the autumn vibes
    7) your favorite candy of the season
    Um, all of them with chocolate in them? I like Milky Way, I also love the Midnight Milky Way (is that special for Halloween maybe, don’t know).
    8) movie or book with themes on death and rebirth
    Ah, this is too philosophical for me. And probably also scary, unless you want to count Fawkes the Phoenix in Harry Potter.
    9) Youtube channel you associate with autumn
    Well, I’ll just put Shipwrecked because they produced the Poe webseries, I’m planning on watching.
    10) your favorite fall beverage
    Another of my made for Spring-ness, but I don’t really like hot beverages except for hot chocolate which is obviously Christmas and winter. So whole milk for my gingersnaps.
  • Culture and Entertainment

    Autumn Music and Mood

    I’m not that into music. I listen in the car to block out silence (and I almost NEVER here music on the radio that I like much less love), but I usually prefer silence otherwise. And I have a hard time finding music that I love. And sometimes I love some music sometimes and sometimes I don’t love it.

    I pulled out a flute/harp duet c.d (very Irish/Celtic sounding) because I thought of it and wanted to make sure I hadn’t misplaced it. That got me to thinking how seasonally appropriate it was. And then I thought about autumn music. And what I think fits fall. Contemplative, sentimental, spooky, sorrowful, haunting. I love the season of fall but a lot of what fits the autumn mood is a bit too depressing for me.* This c.d. is a not always what I need even though it is so beautiful. And scary books? Yeah, I’ll do Agatha Christie . . . and fall Hallmark.

    I’m more into pretty fall colors, the actual change of the season, bonfires, and yummy fall food involving pumpkin, molasses, and spices. But I still think I need a touch of the spooky for it to really fall. And I find it fun to dress up for Halloween (again, not scary, just dress-up).

    Anyway. I tried to think up some other good music that fits my description.
    “River Flows in You”
    LOTR** soundtrack. Especially Rohan themes.
    Folk songs
    The Hanging Tree

    *I may have mentioned this before. I know a lot of people joke around about the U.S. term (and the Pinterest quotes are funny), but I have a Latin dictionary and also looked on Whitaker’s words, and “autumnus/i” means . . . wait for it . . . autumn. I even looked in my massive Webster’s dictionary for some hint as to a deeper etymology. Other than finding out the origin is possibly Etruscan, nothing. So its an old word for the season. Yeah. I love learning, but I despise pedantry and sophistry. Rant over.

    **I love the artistry of these movies, and I think the music is probably one of my favorite parts, but I have a hard time enjoying the story anymore. I’m really not into epics or really action movies (using that description quite broadly). And some parts in these movies are hysterical (where they aren’t supposed to be). I’m not the dramatic teenager anymore, and apparently, I’m the hardened skeptic who takes nothing seriously, lol.

  • Daily Life

    Autumn Bucket List


    About a month ago, I saw a lovely idea for a bucket list here on The Enchanting Rose. I at first thought I “needed” to buy pretty patterned paper and jewels too, but realized that I could use stamps and paint to add detail to the paper we already had.
    I picked out this gorgeous sketchbook from my notebook and journal hoard (mostly from Half-Price); this will be my art journal for autumn and winter. I made my version fairly quickly for me although it has taken me awhile to post.
    I am so proud of this. I picked the colors to match the notebook cover.
    I kept my options rather general. I’m hoping to get a photo and art page out of a couple of these; I think that would be fun. What are y’all’s fall plans?


  • Beauty and Fashion

    My Vague Autumn and Winter Fashion Plan

    I am summer colored and I tend to like summery fabric and patterns and styles. I was not happy with my everyday Winter wardrobe last year and I have very little in the dressy category, so I want to try to improve my Autumn/Winter style.

    I really need to realize that if I want the elegant style I have in my mind and the colors that flatter me, I am going to have to make quite a few of my clothes. I am also realizing overall that I really need to be more selective and careful shopping. Altering anything and everything is not reasonable, and much altering is not worth it to me; I prefer something original if I am going to spend a lot of time sewing. I have given away/gotten rid of so many clothes recently because they do not fit, are not my style, are not my color, etc.

    I made a secret board on Pinterest. I also glued some items from magazines on cardstock for a mood/style board. But I have ideas in my head that I could not really find, so I also created some Polyvore boards.

    I also have very little in the way of business outfits whether informal or formal, so I also need to work on that. Yeah, practicality. Oh, yeah. I need coats. I just have trench coats. I might want to try to make a coat or two.

    I am not that into plaids, stripes, neutrals, and dark colors, so I want to find ways to make my colors and patterns work and yet not look summery. I have some ideas, but we will see if I can make them happen.

  • Handicrafts

    First Autumn Yarn Order.

    Yarn is like candy, it is so scrumptious. I still have oodles left of the gorgeous stuff from last year, but I have made a few purchases this year.

    I also finally bought blocking boards and (not enough) pins! I also invested in a set of interchangeable circular needles. I will have a few previously finished, newly blocked projects to post soon.

    Anyway. I recently found this lovely yarn shop on Etsy from which I purchased the purple yarn. Everything else, including the blocking supplies, I purchased from Knitpicks.

  • Daily Life

    Autumn Epicureanism

    I have been wanting to try chicken tetrazzini, and so one day when I had some chicken and the job of preparing supper I found a recipe and tried it. We rarely have wine on hand, but I scavenged a teeny tiny bottle from Brazil which Dad must have received as a gift or something on one of his trips. The bottle held just the right amount.

    I followed this recipe except I did not want peas and could not find mushrooms. We also did not have fresh herbs, so I used the ratio of 1/3 dry to fresh conversion. I would like to try it with fresh herbs and mushrooms. But we still enjoyed it. We barely had any leftovers.

    We have also been testing out recipes for the showers. I made these savory scones. I had to substitute a bit of onion for the 1/3 cup of chives or green onions. Hopefully for the shower we will have the original ingredients.

    I am making petit fours for one of the showers, but many of the recipes called for almond paste and almond extract and we have a lot of nut allergies at church, so I tried a new pound cake recipe. I have previously made this pound cake (but used all butter and now shortening), so I will just have to choose between the two. Another time I would like to try the almond recipes since I love that flavoring.

    Hopefully I will remember to get shower photos.

  • Daily Life

    What I’ve Been Up to Lately

    Looking forward to and trying to save for Christmas, Ladies’ Shopping Day, possibly two art/Christmas Festivals, and Black Friday. I’ve set up a fun money account, but I keep emptying it because I over spend. We’ve already drawn names among the siblings with the Draw Names site and most people have their gift list. I need a second job.

    Not reading scary books. For one thing, I’ve really fallen into a reading slump. I’m really looking forward to my Narnia plan for December. For another, I don’t want to read scary books. Also, making a too strict and long list is a sure fire way for me not to read anything on said list. However, I’m keeping my Fall/Autumn list for future seasons, maybe I’ll read one book each season. I’m still aiming for a reread of The Tenant of Wildfell Hall because I want to watch the miniseries.

    Watching tons of Youtube. That has been a theme of this year. I’ll post some of the my recent favs in another post.

    Waiting for Disney+, it’s a little over a week peoples!

    Working on routines. My morning routine is timed down to five minute intervals in some sections with even such things as brushing my teeth and warming up my car included because I’m that much of a late person, but also because I want to get a lot done (this is a relative term, my a lot is very small apparently) in the morning since I’m usually brain-dead when I get back from work.

    Trying to work on preparing my own food. I tried HelloFresh because of their first time offers. It was lovely, and I have some new recipes to try and new recipe/meal structures to build on. However, it’s too expensive to use regularly, and I’m not high-energy, so I want to get into a two day a week cooking/meal prep schedule. We’ll see. I’d would like to make my way through the meal-planning services, using their first-time codes.

    Working on my Spanish on Duolingo. I was working on this for the first half of the year pretty consistently. I fell off of that for a few months, but I’ve been doing it almost every day for the last two months, I think. The concept of streaks and setting high XP points don’t really work well with my rebelliousness, but the concept of leagues works with my competitiveness, so my average daily XP has risen exponentially, and I’ve maintained a 30+ day streak (I missed at one day, that’s way it’s not 60+). And it’s been so fun to see my much faster progress through my tree. I’m going to try to add extra Spanish grammar and vocab on the weekends. I’m getting to the point where I need that.

    Speaking of Duolingo, I was super-excited to see their Latin course. I will say though, I think learning the grammar first is the best way to learn Latin, at least for non-Romance Language first language speakers, and especially for us really-without-a-grammar-structure English speakers, because it sets you up to understand the grammar structure, of for example, Spanish. However, because I took Latin in college, I’d like to go back and learn more vocab (helpful for English speakers as most of our vocab is Latin-based and for anyone learning a Romance language and for anyone interested in Classical education).

    Becoming more interested in Audible this year. It’s paused now, but I’ve taken advantage of the buy-three at a discount to stock up on books. I’m going to listen to Narnia as I follow along in the colored-illustration version in December. I also have a ton of BBC radio dramas on my list. However, I’ve been low on the attention-span and high on the irritability lately, so I haven’t been even listening to music much at work. So basically, I’m just burned out overall. Or tired. Or both.

    Obsessing over my sleep habits. Being a princess and the pea seems to be hereditary. My purchases these last couple of years for sleeping have included a weighted blanked, tons of earplugs, a sleep mask, a sound machine, outside door weatherproofing stripping, and a sound curtain for the door (which I haven’t hung and not sure how I can use, might have to get a different one and just put that behind the book shelf?). This sleep issue is a work in progress.

    Working on my style. I’d fallen into a rut with my weight gain. But my renewed interest in hair and make-up and more strategic fall purchases as well as my new morning routine have significantly helped me in this area. Also, tons of inspiration from Youtube.

    A lot on this list hinges on habits and routines. I’ve been learning and thinking a lot about that this year.



  • Daily Life

    Fall Fun List

    I was sorta trying to train myself to say “autumn,” I don’t think that is going to work, especially when you can say “Fall Fun.” Just too easy.

    First things first: Girls during fall be like.. 2019 Edition

    Since summer flew by me without me doing anything (my fastest speed is “turtle” my slowest speed is “snail” which must be what I’m doing currently), I thought I’d plan out my fall, putting movies, books, food, and activities into my calendar.

    My list for books was originally:

    • Dracula
    • Poe
    • The Tenant of Wildfell Hall (reread)
    • Something Wicked This Way Comes
    • Call of the Wild

    But I’ve since happened upon this list of spooky short stories from Modern Mrs. Darcy, and I’d like to add list add the Montgomery book, but I’d like try all those not on my list except Du Maurier, I just don’t get her appeal, and Christie (I’ve probably read a lot of those, plus don’t tend to love her short stories).

    For all of these we shall see, it’s odd that I can read murder mysteries, I’m not drawn to dark books, I certainly can be freaked out by them, but I think that a lot of these are psychological which I REALLY don’t do or wilderness/animal. Yeah. We’ll see. If I think they are too dark, twisted, and/or sadistic, I won’t be reading them.

    For movies/visual media I have:

    • Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell (It’s amazing how little impression that book made on my mind for its size and it’s subject/genre, was it overhyped or is it just me? I feel like it was my kind of thing, but I forgot it very quickly after reading it, usually forget it’s existence, perhaps because there needed to be a sequel? Anyhow, some where I saw the miniseries again, I’m sure I knew of it before, and it seemed to fit this season).
    • A Tenant of Wildfell Hall (I love Toby Stephens, and when I saw that he featured in the adaption available on Amazon Prime, I knew I needed to re-read the story to refresh my mind before I watched it).
    • After/if I manage to read some Poe, I want to try the webseries, A Tell Tale Vlog, I’ve had on my mind for years (but never managed to read anymore Poe, wonder why). It’s weird how popular (or just to nerds?) and transient the webseries phase was. The way media is developing, it seems like more could have been made of it?
    • Spellbound

    For audio media I have (the music in this list is from this previous Fall/Autumn mood post):

    For food I have:

    • Oatmeal Pancakes
    • Cardamon Buns
    • Gingerbread
    • Gingersnaps
    • Pumpkin Bread
    • Pumpkin Muffins
    • Pumpkin Truffles
    • Pumpkin Pancakes (maybe)
    • Maple Rolls
    • Maple Cookies
    • This Ghost Cake (the design, I’ll probably stick with Hershey’s tried and true chocolate cake with dark chocolate cocoa)
    • Spice doughnuts
    • Sweet Potato Casserole
    • Chicken Potpie
    • Mac n Cheese
    • Soups
    • Breads

    Activities (most of those that involve leaving the house are possibilities rather than probabilities):

    • Maple festival
    • Zoo
    • Bonfire and s’mores
    • Broadway (the traveling shows that come to various cities)
    • Ladies’ Shopping Day
    • Thanksgiving
    • Sew velvet pumpkins and squash, make some foxes, plan Xmas dress
    • Miniatures/models
    • Fall puzzle
    • Concert?
  • Daily Life

    Fall Fun List Success

    • An autumn festival (already scheduled, just need to ask off) with my grandparents
    • Join in on our family Ladies Shopping Day; I have only been able to join on show-and-tell the last few times. We’ve tried to have 1-2 shopping days with the ladies in Mom’s extended family where we shop at antique stores and consignment shops with a break for lunch and an end of day after snack and show-and-tell showcasing our finds at the end. So much fun.
    • Spend lots of time with my niece and take lots of good photos. Since I’ve gotten a new phone, I’ve gotten some photos and videos, mostly videos. It’s more fun just to talk to her and watch her though.
    • Maybe a autumn hiking trip. No.
    • Buy all my planning stuff for next year. I bought some, not the fun stuff though and that after fall
    • Read tons moreParticipate in Classics Club dare and read 5 more from list. I did read a ton more, just not much from the Classics Club although I did start War and Peace.
    • Work on blog development a bit (Genesis, IP, spam, disclosure). No.
    • Make serious dent in my sewing stash. I haven’t sewn at all.
      • Finish second smocked baby dress ASAP
      • Two more business skirts
      • Fall dresses and skirts
      • Baby dresses for summer (as Christmas gifts)
      • Tons of baby bows and such
    • Make a serious dent in my knitting stash. No, but I’ve done a little at using up some odd balls and leftovers by making one bonnet for my niece as well as two more in different sizes and starting a fourth plus a bit for Christmas.
      • Knit at least one sweater and sweater dress for me
      • Baby sweaters, rompers, sweater dresses. I finished my niece’s shrug and just started her sweater dress, after Christmas
      • Socks for me
      • Baby socks
    • Dress up as Audrey Hepburn from How to Steal a Million for Halloween. Maybe next year.
    • Start working on regency outfit. No, I could have at least make some mock-ups, I have plenty of scraps/muslin for some of that, but I lacked the motivation.
  • Culture and Entertainment

    Movies I’ve Watched: October 2018

    I’ve sure been hitting my vintage stride. Hallmark has bored me (which is good considering my embarrassing spree over the last years), and I’ve really been needing comfort movies and classic comedies have been hitting the spot, or rather classic movies period, I just prefer the comedies, so I’m going to try to load up on more.


    Mr. Deeds Goes to Town. Both sad and boring, but oh, my, young Gary Cooper is stunning. Also, he looks like Jason Isaacs, so so much.

    Monkey Business. Absolutely hysterical. Cary Grant is a comedy genius (definitely like him better now that I’ve seen and understood him in his best role type instead of comparing him to the dreamy  Gregory Peck or handsome sweetheart Jimmy Stuart or the appealing Peter O’Toole who are my romantic favorites). I definitely want to own this one.

    How to Marry a Millionaire. Not as nearly as hilarious, but still fun.

    To Have and Have Not. A sort of different version of Casablanca. I liked it slightly better, but rather boring still. Bacall and Bogart together, yes, definitely iconic.

    The Big Sleep. This and Dark Passage were my favorites of the Bogart/Bacall pairing. I think that this was the better movie, but I actually think I liked the other better or at the least romance was better in Dark Passage. Bogart is better in this murder mystery stories. He’ll never be a crush or a favorite, but I understand better his iconic status

    Key Largo. Boring and too many horrible death of innocents.

    Dark Passage. See notes above.


    Pearl in Paradise. Eh.

    Falling for You. Cute.

    Under the Autumn Moon. Eh.


  • Daily Life

    Fall Fun List and To-Do’s

    I always love seasonal “bucket” lists, and enjoy reading Hamlette’s to-dos. I’m an inveterate list making . . . and list-ignorer. I’ll probably put up a final quarter to-do list once I’ve formulated it. It will be MUCH simpler than the ones I previously made myself.

    Fall Fun/Hobby To-Do List

    • An autumn festival (already scheduled, just need to ask off) with my grandparents
    • Join in on our family Ladies Shopping Day; I have only been able to join on show-and-tell the last few times. We’ve tried to have 1-2 shopping days with the ladies in Mom’s extended family where we shop at antique stores and consignment shops with a break for lunch and an end of day after snack and show-and-tell showcasing our finds at the end. So much fun.
    • Spend lots of time with my niece and take lots of good photos
    • Maybe a autumn hiking trip
    • Buy all my planning stuff for next year
    • Read tons more: Participate in Classics Club dare and read 5 more from list
    • Work on blog development a bit (Genesis, IP, spam, disclosure)
    • Make serious dent in my sewing stash
      • Finish second smocked baby dress ASAP
      • Two more business skirts
      • Fall dresses and skirts
      • Baby dresses for summer (as Christmas gifts)
      • Tons of baby bows and such
    • Make a serious den in my knitting stash
      • Knit at least one sweater and sweater dress for me
      • Baby sweaters, rompers, sweater dresses
      • Socks for me
      • Baby socks
    • Dress up as Audrey Hepburn from How to Steal a Million for Halloween
    • Start working on regency outfit
  • Handicrafts

    What I’ve Knit Recently

    An Age of Brass and Steam Kerchief made with copper colored Knit Picks Diadem for a friend with an autumn birthday.

    Matching baby and toddler knit dresses for the same friend’s little girls. I used a cardigan pattern as a loose guide, but I also was figuring things out as I went along (hence why the sleeves aren’t as striped; I didn’t want to have to end in the middle of a stripe or not on the third stripe; I should have calculated the stripe size based on the sleeve lengths). Eventually I want to do these patterns again and work out the issues and then I’ll post here and on Ravelry.

    I knit this seed stitch scarf (I knit it long enough to be an infinity scarf and added buttonholes) ages ago and had it blocked and ready for when I could purchase the perfect buttons. I finally ordered these darling flowers (when you order, pick the “with hook” option and then make a note to seller that you would like the hooks on the bottom like shank buttons).

    Baby blanket #1 (there will be at least 4 this year for 4 family babies!!!). I just made this pattern up; one square basket weave, one square garter, one square moss, and one square seed stitch. I already had this started and had my fingers crossed one of my cousins would have a boy, and sure enough.