A Fall Self-Care Bucket List to Make the Most Out of Autumn

Are you ready to embrace a fresh start and create a fall you’ll love?

This photo was taken during a fall trip to the Northeast.

My blogger friends from West Virginia to Australia (where it’s springtime!) and I are listing things we want to be sure and enjoy in our blog hop, “Making the Most Out of the New Season.” Be sure to scroll to the end of this post and click over for more smiles and inspirations from around the globe.

No matter where you live, this is the perfect time to incorporate the best of the new season into a self-care routine designed to help you slow down and enjoy the best of these brief but lovely seasons.

Feel free to incorporate our ideas and add your own to the mix. Create a bucket list you want to be sure to enjoy this new season – and be sure to schedule them on your calendar.

So, let’s get started with some ways you can practice some self-care this fall. After reading my tips, don’t forget to check out my writer friends’ suggestions by clicking the links at the bottom of this article.

Get in the Proper State of Mind

As we experience the change from summer to fall, let’s be intentional and start by repeating these autumn-inspired affirmations often:

During this fall season, no matter what is going on in my life, I give myself permission to take time to care for myself. As I breathe in the crisp fall air, I will allow stress and anxiety to drift away like autumn leaves. I will feel calm, relaxed, at peace, and fill each day with joy. I will learn to slow down and be in the moment, enjoying all this exquisite season has to offer.

Okay, now that we’re in the right frame of mind, let’s have some fun and relax!

Have an Autumn Adventure

With the last remaining warm temperatures during the day, the ever-changing colors of the leaves, and the  crisp fall air, it’s a great time to hop in the car for a road trip. Maybe even book a weekend getaway in the woods. (For a fall foliage map to find out when leaves are changing color in your area, click here.)

Perhaps you’ll include a hayride or apple picking. Bring along the grandkids for extra fun. Or visit a pumpkin patch and pick one to bake a pumpkin pie and roast the pumpkin seeds.

If a weekend trip is not feasible, simply get outdoors for the day. Put on your jeans and a cozy sweater and take a nature hike, visit a local national park, or take a leisurely bike ride to enjoy all those fall colors. Bring along some autumn-inspired homemade trail mix with pumpkin seeds, cranberry raisins, and Reese’s pieces.

Enjoying apple picking with the grandkids during a trip to nearby Oak Glen.

Relive your childhood and rake a giant pile of leaves and dive in with the grandkids. If you’re a football fan, have a tailgate party. Or take a chilly beach stroll during off-season when you can enjoy the ocean without the crowds.

Looking for some romance? Pack an autumn picnic with a simple cheese board with crackers, fruit, chutneys, and assorted cheeses. Add a fun plaid thermos full of hot lentil and ham soup. Don’t forget some apple cider, pumpkin ale, or Oktoberfest beers to drink. Spread a cozy favorite quilt in the crunchy leaves and enjoy all the glory of autumn. In the evening, take time to relax around a campfire or firepit with a cozy blanket and someone special to watch the flames.

Whatever your choice, be sure to take lots of pictures of all the bright and vibrant colors to capture some of that beauty and create wonderful memories for the future.

Pamper Yourself

Since fall often means busier days with more structure and routine than summer, be sure and start your morning off right. Make a nutritious breakfast with fall-inspired oatmeal topped with walnuts, a sprinkling of maple syrup, and a dash of cinnamon, nutmeg, or pumpkin pie spice. Take an early morning walk or jog in the brisk air. Be sure and spend a few extra moments sipping your coffee, enjoying the warm sunlight through the kitchen window.

Ready to relax at the end of the day? Fall self-care is all about getting warm and cozy. Sit by the fire in comfy fleecy pajamas under a fluffy throw sipping your favorite tea. Soak in a hot tub filled with spicy essential oils and an autumn-scented candle burning for some relaxing aromatherapy. Cook some wholesome, hearty comfort food like stews or Crockpot creations or roast healthy veggies. Or bake a scrumptious apple or pumpkin pie to celebrate the season. Embrace hygge like the Norwegians. Don’t know what that is? Check out my blog on the subject.

Spa days are soothing any time of the year. Since cool weather can dry your skin, why not try a facial with some seasonal fragrances.

Here’s one I found on the Internet that sounds nice:

Mix 2 tablespoons of honey with 1 teaspoon of cinnamon and 1 teaspoon of nutmeg.
Stir the ingredients together to make a paste.
Apply the mixture to your face, sit back, close your eyes, and relax for 30 minutes.
Wash the mixture off with a gentle, warm scrubbing in a circular motion.

And while you’re at it, why not splurge and get a mani-pedi with the new fun fall colors?

Try a Fall-Friendly Hobby

Science has proven that hobbies can mitigate negative effects of stress which makes it a great addition to your fall self-care routine.

On those cold, rainy days you may want to try a fall-themed craft like leaf-pressing, candle making, or fantasy football. Of course, this is the perfect time to pick up photography or improve your skills.

Take up knitting and create special sweaters, scarfs, and caps for your loved ones or a knit throw blanket perfect for snuggling. Or how about quilting a heirloom for your children or grandchildren?

If you’re crafty, create a fall centerpiece for your table or decorate your mantel using pumpkins, fall foliage, pine cones, acorns, and autumn candles. If you’re on a budget, these items can often be found at the dollar store.

So, there you are. Those are my tips for a great fall. What’s your favorite way to enjoy the new season? Please share in the comment section below. 

For more inspirational recollections and tips for enjoying a fantastic fall or a special spring for those on the other side of the world, please visit the #Gr8blogs below. (And check back as more will be added!) 

Julie Schooler: 3 Harmful Habits to Cast Aside in the New Season 

Rebecca Lyndsey: Fall Favorites

Cat Michaels: What’s Not to Love? – Six Things to Make You Fall for Fall 

James Milson: Happy Autumn, Pumpkin Spice, and Everything Nice about Fall! 

Sandra Bennett: Spring Into the Season

Auden Johnson: What’s on Your Fall Bucket List?



Julie A. Gorges is the author of two young adult novels, Just Call Me Goody Two Shoes and Time to Cast Away and co-author of Residential Steel Design and Construction published by McGraw Hill. In addition, hundreds of her articles and short stories have been published in national and regional magazines, and she received three journalism awards from the Washington Newspaper Publishers Association while working as a newspaper reporter. Julie currently lives in southern California with her husband, Scott, and has two grown children and three grandchildren.

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8 Responses

  1. Cat Michaels says:

    Love the idea of a fall road trip, Julie! Colors near us in central North Carolina are just turning so plenty of time to plan where to go. I will for sure take my digital camera with its telephone and wide-angle lenses to snap those fall pix. (In fact, I just signed up for a photography workshop on capturing autumn colors.)

    I’m gonna try your picnic idea…or find a homey small-town cafe with outdoor seating overlooking fall colors.

    Thanks for the ideas. Here’s to a relaxing fall season for us all!

    • juliegorges says:

      Color me pea green with envy! So jealous of the wonderful fall you must get there in North Carolina. Palm trees don’t change colors here in the California desert. But I plan to put some of my tips to use by visiting Oak Glen – only 40 minutes away but gives you a taste of fall with foliage and lots of fun activities for the grandkids. Enjoy your road trip, Cat! Can’t wait to see the photos.

  2. Hi Julie, I love seeing all the magnificent colours of your Autumn (Fall). It is a wonderful cosy time of year and your suggestions for well being are fabulous. I’m not sure about the honey based face mask, I don’t think I could do that although I know honey is so good for you. Let me know how it goes if you try it.

  3. This fall post made me hungry and I could almost smell fall in the air.
    October is a perfect time to chill and relax before the rush of the holidays.
    Great suggestions and thanks Julie!

  4. Man, that oatmeal sounds delicious. I’ve been meaning to experiment with oatmeal, maybe adding something crunchy to it. Your post is getting my mind running. I’m trying to relax more and take more moments where I’m enjoying life, even while working. Being too stressed is not good for your health.

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