Tag Archives: autumn

Fighting autumnal nostalgia with American candy from Kingdom of Sweets

I think I’ve been away from the States long enough that very few things make me homesick anymore –  leagues less than the numerous things that did in the past, anyway. However, everything that does make me homesick happens right around this time of year. Autumn comes and I miss the riotous change of leaves in Ohio, the buzzing fun of Halloween, followed by the gorging and relaxing and extra long weekend that comes with Thanksgiving in November.

And of course there’s loads of American stuff I can’t get here, even if I want it. Nothing that it’s impossible to live without (I stock up on Annie’s Mac and Cheese on every visit Stateside, and eat my weight in vegetarian corn dogs, for an example of my frivolous tastes). And some of the things that can be found in the UK are wildly different in taste and flavor than their American counterparts, due to rules and regulations about those tasty tasty additives that American companies are so fond of! Compare British Doritos and American Doritos if you don’t believe me. It’s a THING.

With all that said, I was pleased as punch when Kingdom of Sweets got in touch with me to ask if it would be okay if they sent me a box of American sweets to help me feel a little less homesick this season. I said yes, with gusto, because mama didn’t raise no fool.

My box arrived last week and it was full of stuff I hadn’t seen in ages! Cookie dough bites (these were my childhood treat at the movie theater, and if my mom was feeling extra generous I’d get them with Sour Patch Kids and popcorn because I love to eat). I didn’t even know they still made them!

Nerds, Warheads, Gobstoppers, dum dums, a Butterfinger – I am currently up to my eyeballs in sweet treats and sugary goodness, and I am looking forward to tucking in!  If I am able, maybe I’ll save a bunch of it for Halloween eve and pretend I’ve just gone to a rockin’ costume party and/or gone trick or treating. But that’s several weeks away so let’s not kid ourselves. If you’re also a moderately homesick American – do yourself a solid and get some candy coming your way to combat the mountains of Mister Kiplings and Cadburys going around this time of year 😉

dead leaves and the dirty ground

autumn in lindfield

autumn in lindfield

lindfield autumn

autumn lindfield pond

autumn in lindfield

bruce runs on picker's green lindfield

pickers green lindfield

(run bruce run!)

bruce runs in lindfield

When the leaves change around here there is never enough red, and far too much green, speckled with a good amount of yellow and brown. So it goes when home is a place that stays plush and verdant through most of the winter and where rain is in abundance, rarely, sadly, turning to frigid temperatures and snow. It isn’t really something worth complaining about-it is temperate and lovely and I don’t have to pile myself in wool-mixed goods until finding myself as rotund as the stay puft marshmallow man for 4 months of the year- but the blazing, fiery reds and oranges of Ohio in October are something that I will always miss. They are the most beautiful thing.



CELTA week 2 ends tomorrow. We’re at the halfway point, and we’re down to 6 (out of 7) teacher trainers. One quit on Tuesday. I have seen three grown people cry (and none of those criers were the trainees that quit, surprisingly enough). I’m doing alright in the course. More than alright, really, thankfully. I’ve gotten marked “above standard” for one assessed lesson, which I’m particularly pleased with, and other than that it’s stressful but plodding right along. According to the trainers, week 3 is the worst-we switch our afternoon teaching groups, so those who were teaching pre-intermediate lessons move up to teaching upper-intermediate and vice versa, and there are more assessed lessons plus two large assignments due all between Monday and Thursday. One trainer joked today that week 3 is when “we start wearing bullet-proof jackets”. Goodness. So I’ve cancelled my Halloween plans for the weekend (i know! and as i’ve mentioned before, Halloween isn’t as big here, so being invited to my awesome friend Keely’s equally awesome undead rockstar Halloween party and then having to decline is heart-freakin-breaking, let me tell you) and am sequestering myself with red wine and my laptop for three days to make magic happen. This is the real climax, I think. If I make it past week three, it’s all downhill (in a good way) from there.

In other news….oh wait, there is no other news. This is my life right now. At least the leaves have turned yellow. But where is the red? It is the thing I miss most right now-the blazing red of autumn. Its void is noticed.

Prairie Peddler Festival

I don’t leave the city much, so it seems. But when my dad extended an invite my way to join him and use some free tickets to the Prairie Peddler Festival in Butler yesterday, I was like “hell yeah”. Costumes, whittling, crafts, old stuff-I was all over it. In the end, it wasn’t as great as we hoped (a little on the not-authentic side of things, as I’m pretty sure the prairie pilgrims didn’t have access to IBC root beer/fried cheese/college football home decor) but it was cool chilling with my pops and giggling at stuff. And there was a guy using a chainsaw to whittle bears out of tree trunks, so high five to him and his chainsaw-ing prowess.

Don’t get me wrong, there were many examples of artistic abilities and general artisan works. But then you had ladies like this one selling bags of powdered sugar with like, red number 5 and saying it was “cheesecake”-but I’m pretty sure lack of cheese means no cheesecake.

Or, for further example, these things-what? Why? Where? Pilgrims did not have time for, nor did they invent, mascots.

But here, more pictures of things I found interesting and/or funny. No snarking.

My dad, mesmerized by a giant carved pumpkin.

I actually wanted to buy this window growing glass set, but it was just another thing that would probably break when shipping across the ocean in two months.

Thanks for the good times and the trail bag of cheese and sausage that I split with my dad, Prairie Peddler!


Country Drive

A side effect of growing older seems to be the appreciation of little things, or things that one became easily bored of/with at a younger age. Case in point self-referentially: cooking, new and more efficient appliances, like washing machines, and in this case, driving around solely to look at the changing colors on the trees. Today I went up north for a visit to the ol’ home county and a trip to the Prairie Peddler  with my dad(more on that soon) and took far too many pictures of former greenery. I didn’t want to edit the pictures too much or at all because while a boost to saturation would have been nice, the colors were really beautiful all on their own.

It’s kind of strange seeing colors like this when the temperatures are so high (another 80 degree day here!) but I guess I shouldn’t complain, even though I’m itching for a return to the cooler climes. However, I’m thankful for such a beautiful day spent in the company of my hilarious and endlessly philosophical father (hey Papa Sheets! Consider this your shout out, you crazy hippy).