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Autumn is in full force in the Midwest. The leaves are changing and falling. There is a crispness to the air, and our heat is already on. Fall is one of my favorite seasons because it is the most beautiful. Mother Nature shows off in the fall in the Midwest.
In honor of my favorite season, I wanted to share a few of my favorite things for this time of year.
And no it’s not going to be a list of pumpkin spice things, though there may be one pumpkin thing on the list.
Without further ado five of my favorite things are:
How is it possible that I wasn’t introduced to the wonder of Cuddle Duds until December 2016? I’m fairly certain I would live in them if it were socially acceptable. They are not for my job, well at least the part of my job that isn’t work from home. Brian bought me a pair of Cuddle Duds for Christmas last year. I have never worn them under any other clothes on a cold day. I have turned them into my absolute favorite pajamas and lounge around the house. They are so comfortable and perfect for a good snuggle under a blanket on a chilly morning with a good book.
I will caution you that while Cuddle Duds are amazingly comfortable there is one downfall.
They are very forgiving.
Meaning if you have a little Thanksgiving dinner they won’t remind you to stop. If you are one of those people who monitor their weight/size by how their clothes fit, you cannot wear Cuddle Duds all the time. You may quickly realize that your jeans and button up dress pants no longer fit. However, in your world maybe that’s not a downfall. Put on your Cuddle Duds and head out for Thanksgiving. You can eat whatever you want and still feel comfortable in your pants.
These can be bought many places, but be sure to watch for sales on Black Friday. Then they will be on sale again as winter comes to an end.
Harney and Sons Hot Cinnamon Tea
I was introduced to this tea by one of the amazing women on “Sorta Awesome.” This is one of my all-time favorite Podcasts. I have been known to try many new things based on their recommendations. While I do not drink coffee, but in the fall and winter, I do enjoy a hot beverage. Sometimes it is hot chocolate, but that can have additional calories that I may not always want. I occasionally drink tea, but always the flavored ones.
When one of the Sorta Awesome ladies was raving about Harney and Sons hot cinnamon spice tea, I decided I should give it a shot. I ordered some online because I couldn’t find it at my local grocery store. It is delicious. If you like cinnamon – the taste and smell – you will love this. It was an experience for my taste buds and my nose. I don’t drink tea every day, so the large container lasted me an entire year. Frugal hint: Use the same tea bag for multiple cups of tea, it is just as strong several cups later.
I know, I know I’m fulfilling a stereotype here. I love fall because of something pumpkin flavored, but if you like pumpkin and haven’t tried this, you are missing out. In fact, I never liked pumpkin (and I still don’t like pumpkin pie) until I tried this.
Pumpkin fluff is easy to make and involves three simple ingredients. You need to get one regular size container of cool whip, one box of instant vanilla pudding mix, and one 15 oz container of canned pumpkin. It does not matter if you choose fat-free or sugar-free of the above ingredients. It works the same. Let the cool whip thaw a little bit. Then dump these three ingredients into a bowl and mix. If you don’t want to eat it right away, refrigerate it. It will keep for several days.
Pumpkin fluff can be eaten alone with a spoon or serve it with graham crackers, vanilla wafers, pretzels, or ginger thins (a type of cookie found in the cookie aisle). I prefer gluten-free pretzels (yes they are better than regular pretzels). (frugal note: you can find gluten free pretzels at a great price at Aldi
The pretzel with the pumpkin fluff is the perfect mix of sweet and salty.
How is it possible I have not ever mentioned the Neti Pot to my readers? I am a HUGE supporter of Neti Pot and nasal irrigation, yes that’s right I said nasal irrigation – it’s a thing.
As a survivor of chronic sinus infections, I cannot rave about the glories of a Neti Pot enough.
I used to get several very bad sinus infections a year. They knocked me down for days and days – one time even five weeks. Brian introduced me to the Neti Pot couple of years ago, and I was skeptical. To watch someone use their Neti Pot is the most disgusting thing. It took a while for him to convince me that it was a good idea and worth the gross factor.
Once I got over the weird feeling, I appreciated the freedom to breathe it gave me. Yes, it allowed me to breathe through both nostrils (most times, if even for a few seconds), it got rid of a lot of built up junk in my sinuses and relieved some of the sinus pressure.
Every time I start to get congestion I start using my Neti Pot once a day. It has not eliminated sinus infections from my life, but it has greatly reduced the occurrence of them. A Neti Pot was the first recommendation my Ear, Nose, Throat doctor gave me when I first went to him, but at that time I was already using one. So, yes it is doctor approved and in fact recommended.
When using a Neti Pot be sure to have your own- no sharing Neti Pots with family members. Ours are labeled with our names. You must use distilled water in them and make sure to dry them completely before putting away. You can purchase the sinus rinse packets or make your own.
If you ever suffer from nasal congestion or sinus infections, you owe it to yourself to try this out. I’m not going to lie, it is weird at first, but you will get over that when you see the benefits.
I LOVE the scenery in the fall. It is the most beautiful season, in my opinion. I enjoy summer for all of the activities and the warm weather, but summer has nothing on the beauty of fall. There are so many opportunities for great pictures. Proof of God’s existence is in the beauty of fall.
Take a moment and enjoy fall. What are you favorite things about fall? Comment below, because I’d love to add things to my favorite season.
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