Sunday, October 23, 2011

Fall Happiness

At the beginning of every season, that season is my favorite.  And I think that I always feel equally as strongly about every one.  Like right now, for example, I am definitely, 100% sure that fall is my favorite.  How could there be any question?

The colors, the changing leaves, even down here in Georgia.  People seem friendlier and more relaxed.  Fall flavors and smells.  Everything is just a tiny bit cozier.  Temperatures hovering in the 60s and low 70s, maybe a couple of degrees' difference depending on whether you are in the sun or the shade literally not a single cloud to be seen in the pure blue of the sky, long hours with my laptop and study materials on the roomy outdoor porch of a coffee shop.  Piano concertos in my earphones, the lowering sun warming the back of my neck just the right amount.

This is how I measure my ideal weather (which happens to be perfect fall weather, in my opinion): totally comfortable wearing jeans, rolled up to my calf, sandals, a tank top, and a light cardigan for sitting in the shade.  Perfection.

It also makes me like school way more.  I just feel so much more studious, more scholarly.  I even have a book report to do at the moment!  So here I am, with a paperback book - a collection of essays - in my lap while I peck away on the keyboard, working on the assignment that asks for my impressions about the literature, and feeling so nerdily enthusiastic about it.  (Evidently, you can take the girl out of the liberal arts school...)

my roommate's adorable dog, Haley

perfectly clear and blue

I rearranged and organized a little study nook for myself in a corner of Jake's big, open apartment... hung a couple of pictures, moved all my pens and school supplies into the drawer of a little end table, set up my computer monitor, lit a candle.  A little more inviting... may help me study better there now.   

the candle is lemongrass & coriander... yum

My friend Jon hosted a last-minute fall-themed dinner party for a few friends, which made me so happy... it was just what I needed yesterday.  Plus it gave me an excuse to spend a few hours grocery shopping and cooking, which I haven't done in a little while.  I never feel like I have the time to cook, but then when I do, I am always reminded of how much I like doing it - it always improves my mood, makes me feel calmer, somehow.  Maybe it's the feeling of being tangibly productive.  Having delicious food to eat at the end of my efforts doesn't hurt, either.

time to break out the pumpkin recipes!

spicy coconut and pumpkin soup with cilantro

pumpkin chocolate-chip cookies... the dough was almost too good to bake

I am torn right now between my desire to do yoga or take the dog out for a walk in this beautiful weather, and my need to spend every hour I can manage studying.  We officially have two weeks left in the last full module of our "foundations" phase of the curriculum, or the traditionally second year of med school, before we have a couple weeks to wrap up and then break to go study like crazy for Step 1 of our boards exams (first part of our medical licensing process, of which there will be many more... it's sort of like the MCAT, but on crack.)  So much to get done between now and then, but I am starting to see a tiny light at the end of the classroom tedium.


My little sis has a blog!  You know how something can make you ridiculously happy and totally sad at the same time?  This makes me miss my family like whoa.  You can find her awesomeness here.


  1. You're the best, sis. Holy junk, I want that pumpkin choc chip cookie recipe! Love you and miss you! Thanksgiving is SOON!

  2. Here you go! :)

    Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
    makes 3 dozen cookies

    3 cups flour
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1 teaspoon baking powder
    1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
    ½ teaspoon salt
    ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
    1 cup sugar
    ½ cup light brown sugar
    1 cup canned pumpkin puree
    1 egg, beaten
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1 package (6 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips (preferably mini)
    1 cup cinnamon chips (preferably mini)
    Set the oven to 350 degrees.
    Bake for 13 to 15 minutes or until lightly browned. Let the cookies cool on the sheets for two minutes. Transfer to wire racks to cool completely.

    *I couldn’t find cinnamon chips anywhere, so I used half chocolate chunks and half mini chocolate chips for texture.


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