Five Staples of Fall

Five Staples of Fall

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The crisp air, smell of pumpkin spice lattes, and bursts of warm colors are taking flight. Fall is fast approaching! While it's always hard to say goodbye to warm weather and carefree summer nights, here are a few fall staples to remind you what lies ahead.

1. Pumpkins

Around this time of year you start to see-- and smell-- pumpkins everywhere. As soon as you walk into the grocery store mini pumpkins, large pumpkins, and pumpkins with faces already painted on them jump out at you. White girls from every which way gravitate to Starbucks for a Pumpkin Spiced Latte (replacing a skinny vanilla latte for a few months). Candles and fresh pumpkin spices release familiar spiced scents. It's fair to say, fall is pumpkin season!

2. Flannels

The autumn air feels crisp. It's that weird weather between the summer heat and the winter chills. Too cold not to have a second layer, but too warm to wear a heavy jacket. That's why flannels are perfect for fall! They are also extremely cozy, and worn in just enough that you look put together, yet casual.

3. Changing colors

If you live in an area where the weather differentiates between seasons and there are lots of trees, then you know the fall asthetic of changing leaves is one of the best parts of fall. The vibrant reds, yellows, and oranges make the morning walk to class a little easier.

4. Apples

Like pumpkins, apples are a key staple to the fall season in multiple variations. Along with fresh pumpkin pies, you're bound to see some apple pies this fall season, too! However, apples are also very popular in the form of cider (both hot and cold) during the fall. If you want the best cider or pie, try going apple picking-- they usually sell apple products at farms where you can pick apples, or you can use the picked apples to make yourself a fresh pie!

5. Scarves/Sweaters

It's not winter yet, so sweaters and scarves are not at full force, but fall is the time to bring out your lighter scarves and sweaters-- the gateway clothing that helps you get over your end-of-summer-blues and welcome in the crisper air. Have some fun this season by checking out this article on "Elle" about the best sweaters for this fall!

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30 Things I'd Rather Be Than 'Pretty'

Because "pretty" is so overrated.
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Nowadays, we put so much emphasis on our looks. We focus so much on the outside that we forget to really focus on what matters. I was inspired by a list that I found online of "Things I Would Rather Be Called Instead Of Pretty," so I made my own version. Here is a list of things that I would rather be than "pretty."

1. Captivating

I want one glance at me to completely steal your breath away.

2. Magnetic

I want people to feel drawn to me. I want something to be different about me that people recognize at first glance.

3. Raw

I want to be real. Vulnerable. Completely, genuinely myself.

4. Intoxicating

..and I want you addicted.

5. Humble

I want to recognize my abilities, but not be boastful or proud.

6. Exemplary

I want to stand out.

7. Loyal

I want to pride myself on sticking out the storm.

8. Fascinating

I want you to be hanging on every word I say.

9. Empathetic

I want to be able to feel your pain, so that I can help you heal.

10. Vivacious

I want to be the life of the party.

11. Reckless

I want to be crazy. Thrilling. Unpredictable. I want to keep you guessing, keep your heart pounding, and your blood rushing.

12. Philanthropic

I want to give.

13. Philosophical

I want to ask the tough questions that get you thinking about the purpose of our beating hearts.

14. Loving

When my name is spoken, I want my tenderness to come to mind.

15. Quaintrelle

I want my passion to ooze out of me.

16. Belesprit

I want to be quick. Witty. Always on my toes.

17. Conscientious

I want to always be thinking of others.

18. Passionate

...and I want people to know what my passions are.

19. Alluring

I want to be a woman who draws people in.

20. Kind

Simply put, I want to be pleasant and kind.

21. Selcouth

Even if you've known me your whole life, I want strange, yet marvelous. Rare and wondrous.

22. Pierian

From the way I move to the way I speak, I want to be poetic.

23. Esoteric

Do not mistake this. I do not want to be misunderstood. But rather I'd like to keep my circle small and close. I don't want to be an average, everyday person.

24. Authentic

I don't want anyone to ever question whether I am being genuine or telling the truth.

25. Novaturient

..about my own life. I never want to settle for good enough. Instead I always want to seek to make a positive change.

26. Observant

I want to take all of life in.

27. Peart

I want to be honestly in good spirits at all times.

28. Romantic

Sure, I want to be a little old school in this sense.

29. Elysian

I want to give you the same feeling that you get in paradise.

30. Curious

And I never want to stop searching for answers.
Cover Image Credit: Favim

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Never Take The Beach For Granted

I walked along the shore where sandpipers and royal terns were enjoying the waves and sunshine and I was reminded to do the same.

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My toes submerge into cloud white powder that lines the seashore. The holy ground beckons me to remove my shoes, be mindful of where you tread. It cushions every step. The sand thickens and turns from fluffy powder to a finely packed mat, smooth and chilled. I approach the gentle whooshing waves, and the sand is like ice. One foot in the water and I jump from its coolness. It's cold, but I like it. The second step is not so bad. The clear water curls around my toes and pushes forward then trickles back in a steady motion.

I am not the only one entranced by the steady sound, the gentle swooshing. A little girl plays in the waves, squatting in the water, oblivious to its frigid temperatures as she fills her sand bucket. Her mother stands nearby, calf-deep in the water, phone to her ear, raving to a friend or family member about how wonderful the beach is. Behind me, a man lies on the beach doing nothing but listening to the sound and basking in the late afternoon light.

Puffy clouds line the horizon where the sun is headed. It shines brightly just above them illuminating the water with a trail of light. I can't help but think; I belong here. A fling of sandpipers zip past, diving and circling in rapid syncopated motion. When facing one way they are nearly invisible, their dark browns blend in with water and sky, but when as a group they turn, all their white feathers catch the sunlight at once in a brilliant flash of light. Their angled wings are perfect for maneuvering fast, confusing anything that would try to catch them.

When they have found the opportune, undisturbed spot, they land in one crowd, dozens of tiny birds. Together, they scurry about on twig legs and stab their knife beaks into the sand with precision. They move with the waves, retreating with a rush of scurrying feet whenever the wave approaches, then they immediately return as the water pulls back again, catching as many little creatures as they can before running back again.

Royal Terns casually stand on the water's edge, not nearly as skittish as the little sandpipers. They don't run as I approach them. They look to the water and groom their fluffy feathers, warming themselves in the sun. Bright orange long beaks and black ruffled heads, they stand regally on the sand.

Sometimes I'm too busy, taking pictures, walking, and thinking, that I forget to stop and take in the beauty. Sometimes I get caught up in life and forget I live ten minutes from the beach. Like the birds and the people, I want to stand on the shore and take in the sounds of the waves, their lulling motion, and the suns inviting rays. I want to stay there and get lost in it until I forget everything else. Because enjoying the sand, the waves, and the sun is all that truly matters. So, remind me to never take the beach for granted.

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