Monday, November 02, 2009


It's said that old habits die hard.

For me, a habit I developed earlier this year was social hyperactivity. Contrary to the saying, I had no trouble at all breaking that habit.

By far, the biggest contributor for my drastic seasonal schedule changes is weather. I can only thank the lucky stars above that I don't live in a city / state / country with "real" weather, because I would probably hibernate all winter long and then lose my mind come spring.

Even in California, the jump from summer to fall gives me quite a pause. I suddenly start craving soups and stews and hearty greens, from New England clam chowder to collard greens. Instead of ice cream and cantaloupe, I want baked goods and applesauce with lots of cinnamon. I break out woolly socks and flannel pajamas, and start drinking copious amounts of hot, lemony tea where I would have had a frosty cocktail or a Diet Coke with tons of ice.

I start wearing cashmere and wool, I put away the jersey and cotton. Stockings (opaque stockings this year!) return with a vengeance to keep my feet warm-ish when wearing heels, which is pretty much every day. All of my coats and scarves and cardigans reappear, all the cold-weather clothes that I love so much more than that frippery lightweight summer stuff.

I even change my skincare routine, swapping moisturizers for a heavier one that protects my face against a colder and windier climate.

All these changes for a seasonal change in a city that barely gets rain in the dead of winter.

I may be a bit overly dramatic, but it's necessary. My fingers start getting numb when the weather dips below 60 (I know, I know). I start cooking more, as I'm sure anyone can tell, as much for the warmth of the stove as for the comfort foods that I begin dreaming of. I cooked enough food for a small army yesterday, and I am today wondering what I can make with the paltry supplies at my house.

All these changes, plus the time-consuming task of cooking and baking and keeping the kitchen toasty, means that I go out far, far less than I do during the summer months. And I don't miss it a bit. I loved this past summer- it was the kind of summer that I look back on to shake my head, wondering how I did it all- but I love this chilly hot-chocolate-drinking time, too.

Even more than Christmas, I love Thanksgiving. I love my family to pieces, and it's a time when we are all together, without the stress of presents. My family loves food, drink, and making merry, and we do it best when we're stuck in a cozy house, all of us loathe to leave the nest to even pick up groceries. Thanksgiving weather is here, and it's making me prepare- less going out, more experimenting with baked desserts.

The seasons changed in the past few weeks without my even knowing it, and I couldn't be happier. November, how I love you. And the turkey that you bring.