Autumn is my favorite season: woodsmoke, dry leaves, bread baking, the wind finicky and changeable.
It’s a season of rituals, small celebrations of the year-that’s-been, which merge into preparation for the coming winter.
Here are 8 of my favorite autumn rituals. Remember: ritual is consciousness in action, it doesn’t need to be fancy or solemn!
1. Make an Autumn Altar
An altar is simply a place of honoring. Clear a space on a windowsill or table. Bring in acorns and turning leaves, funky seed pods and fallen feathers. To keep my altars fresh, I re-arrange them daily, actively engaging my senses and challenging myself to deeply see each object.
2. Gather Seeds
You can gather for next year or, if you’re a lazy gardener like I am, gather the flower heads where the seeds are resting and place them where you want that plant in next year’s garden. My garden has flower heads from a gorgeous tangerine-colored echinacea scattered all about!
3. Enjoy the Farmer’s Market
As the days get shorter, I cherish the final weeks of the market. I love when the apples come in, dozens of varieties I’ve never heard of waiting to be tasted.
4. Make Cordials
Some people can. I make cordials. Now is the perfect time to start so they’re ready for your winter celebrations and gifting. The basic recipe is here. My favorite autumn combos? Pomegranate and ginger. Pear and vanilla. Plum and cinnamon.
5. Play in the Leaves
Remember when you were a kid and you’d jump into the big piles of leaves after they were raked? Yeah. That.
6. Make Pumpkin Bread
I’ll admit it: I go a bit crazy with the pumpkin bread. I make mine with apple cider. Weird, right? Check out the recipe here.
7. Blend a Batch of Chaga Chai
Get your taste buds and your immune system revved up! Recipe here.
8. Make a Fire
Allow the first fire of the season to be sacred. Take your time. Stack the wood, or arrange banks of candles, or simply pause and breathe before hitting the ignition on your gas stove. Fire is life. Plants make matter from the energy of the fiery sun, which we then ingest at every meal. As we move toward the cooler months we engage with the fire element more intimately. It’s not the distant sun, it’s the candle flame and hearth fire. Feel into this transition.
Comment below and tell me about your autumn rituals and how you celebrate the shifting seasons!