I may be biased (September is the month of both my anniversary and birthday) but isn’t this the loveliest time of year? The golden quality of the light and a crispness in the air; knitwear beckons and misty mornings are on the horizon. I’ve seen some refer to this time as “Sortum” (sort of Autumn) which I love as I think there’s real magic to be found in these in-between times. Noticing such small seasonal shifts helps to ground me. Here are some ways I’m embracing September slow living:
Saying Goodbye to Summer
The weather may be changeable (we had my birthday tea in the garden amid sunshine, showers, rainbows and a mounting gale) but this month I always get the urge to fit in a few last Summery adventures. At the weekend we made our annual anniversary trip to St Andrews, taking time to slowly savour some of our favourite local spots, plus we celebrated this month’s personal milestones with wild dining in the woods at Jupiter Artland. Every bit as dreamy as it sounds, with simple, seasonal and foraged ingredients eaten on rustic wooden tables below festoon lights.
Back to School Energy
Here in Scotland we’ve been back to school for a month now, but the freshness September brings epitomises back to school energy for me – no matter how old I get. Paired with the harvest moon last week, the change of season is in the air. I’m embracing it by setting aside time for projects, gratitude journaling and checking in with intentions. A new notebook and pen always helps, I find. I’m trying to be kinder to myself and setting smaller, manageable goals and giving myself permission to pursue long-held dreams.
As well as bidding farewell to Summer, I’m drawn to time at home, decluttering and switching up my decor. I’ve Marie Kondo’d my drawers and I’ve been ruthless in clearing out my wardrobe. I’m looking into using Thrift+ to donate clothes – have you tried them before? They send you a donation bag and you return it with anything you want to donate and they sell it for you, with proceeds going to your chosen charity (although they do take commission). Once I’ve decluttered, out come the candles, throws and Autumn bedding – hooray! All things I’ve slowly collected over time and are all the more precious for being put away during the warmer months.
Celebrating the Equinox
For me, the magic of this month crystallises around 22nd September and the Autumn Equinox – the start of astronomical Autumn. A great excuse to plan a celebratory meal and to decorate the house with September’s bountiful conkers, changing leaves and dried hydrangeas. This is a time of balance – with day and night equal length – and the nights will be drawing in properly thereafter. Take time to nurture balance in your own life, whether that’s taking time for yourself (my favourite is early weekend mornings curled up with a book – I’ve just finished Milkman by Anna Burns) or organising to see that friend you’ve not caught up with in months.
September is an ideal time for foraging, with so much wild food ready for the picking. Make a day of blackberrying: pack a picnic with a flask and sandwiches for foraging fuel, then fill your basket with your finds. Forage responsibly: leave enough for the wildlife and other foragers and take only a little fruit from each area. You will get to know the spot for the sweetest berries, as there are hundreds of different varieties of blackberry. Look out for elderberries – now at their peak – that are ripe, black and slightly drooping on their stems; this means that they’re ready and full of goodness.
How are you embracing September slow living?