Let’s just skip over August, shall we, and move straight on into September. The rain started to fall almost as soon as the school holidays started, and then, just as September arrived, the sun reappeared. I always think it is such a shame that most people only see Cornwall in August which to my mind is the least delightful month of the year.
Somehow, busy with visitors staying and entertaining the children, I didn’t manage to post my usual seasonal reflections, but suffice to say, don’t believe everything you read. Cornwall was not full everywhere, just in very specific locations. That said, the very first week of September was noticeably more peaceful everywhere.
Seasonal Living in September
Whilst not traditionally a time for new starts, September will always feel like that to me, so I like to spend September preparing for the change in seasons. I suppose it is a transitional month, looking forward to the coming harder season, celebrating the end of the summer and the harvest and laying down strong foundations for plans to survive the upcoming darker colder months. Here are some ideas:
Make the most of golden sunshine
Get outside as much as possible! Always on my list, but this gorgeous golden sunshine needs to be made the most of. Whilst evening meals outside might be trickier, Sunday lunch eaten outside is always possible if the weather plays ball.
Plan autumn/winter capsule wardrobe
I use the start of the school term as an excuse to clear out our cupboards and wardrobes (I believe this should happen regularly, which is why I often mention it), sending old clothing to the charity shops, nursery spare clothes box and selling some of the better pieces on eBay to fund new season purchases.
As ever, my aim is reduce the things in our house, and live better with less. I am making good progress towards a capsule wardrobe for each of the seasons, aiming for fewer than 37 pieces of only things that I love that I feel good in. I also like to plan out what new or replacement pieces I need – more on this perhaps, as dressing for Cornwall living seems an endless challenge, a debate between desire and practicality.
Traditionally a prosperous harvest was essential for ensuring survival of the upcoming winter. A harvest festival or celebration of thanks for bringing in a successful harvest was celebrated at the end of the period, usually celebrated on the Sunday nearest the Harvest Moon (the full Moon that occurs closest to the autumn equinox – 22 or 23 September). This year the Harvest Moon falls on 24 September, so plenty of time to plan your harvest table for the weekend of 29/30 September.
Pick blackberries and other seasonal fruit
Blackberries are the quintessential hedgerow fruit but I also keep an eye out for plums. Turn either into a gorgeous autumnal pudding by mixing with apples and making a cobbler topping – it always goes down well served with Cornish clotted cream.
Create a seasonal wreath
Wreaths are not just for Christmas! Hydrangeas are everywhere at this time of the year in Cornwall and as the colours start to fade I like to use them to bring a little colour and texture to the front door. Super easy to wire together and into a circle.
Prepare for autumn
This long hot summer meant for once we put the duvet away for several months, using only a sheet, then latterly sheets and blankets. This past week or so though we’ve noticed that as the evenings have started to draw in, temperatures have fallen and we’ve needed the duvet again; there’s nothing nicer than clean ironed sheets and a freshly aired duvet, so make preparations on a sunny weekend. We also like to replenish our wood supply, make sure the wood burner is working, and ensure our supply of candles is plentiful.