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5 Simple Pleasures to Brighten Your Day This Fall (and What to Wear While Doing Them)


I almost named this post, “5 Ways to Make Your Day Feel Like a Movie This Fall”, but I realized the last year has had enough movie-like (some horror, some thriller, some just down right science fiction) days for all of us, so I thought I might aim a little lower…

I figured, instead of recreating a Nora Ephron movie in our heads to get through the mundane or tough days, let’s try our best to cobble together moments that bring us joy, allow us to exhale, and remind ourselves that the little things matter more than we give them credit for. These aren’t magical solutions, and they won’t change anyone’s life, but they might make a Tuesday in October a smidge more fun than it normally would be.

Buy Yourself Flowers

A trip to the bodega for me, a stop by your local florist for you, or a scheduled order from your favorite flower delivery service to make sure a specific day gives you something to look forward to… However you do it, find a way to put some fresh flowers in your home. For me, a walk to the flower shop gives me an abnormal break in my workday, helps me clear my head, and prompts me to focus real intent and energy on something otherwise frivolous: white roses, or peonies? This is important… even if it isn’t.

Make a Playlist That Evokes Scenes from Your Favorite Nancy Meyers Rom-Com

If you have a mindless task to knock out, either for work or around the house, put on a playlist that transports you to a “meet-cute” or baking fight montage. There’s not always a perfect time for this, but sometimes belting out the lyrics to “This Will Be” is exactly what you need to not take yourself or the moment too seriously. If you don’t have a playlist of your own already, you can give mine a listen here.

Go to an Actual Bookstore and Buy an Actual Book

Nathan and I often find ourselves doing what a lot of other people do: ordering a book we want at a moment’s notice and forgetting about it until it’s delivered two days later (or downloading it to your e-reader and skipping the wait altogether). It’s too easy, right?

Breaking our weird modern book buying cycle by going to your local book shop is an odd experience of nostalgia combined with the anticipation of having something new to enjoy when you get home. It’s a little adventure that feels out of the norm in a wonderful way.

Find a Good Place for People Watching

Life has a way of constantly reminding me of one important thing: We are all very, very strange. It’s really liberating to come to grips with that reality, because it opens you up to appreciating the weirdness of things and people around you, and the beauty that can accompany all of our oddities. Sometimes taking a walk, posting up in a crowded coffee shop, or sitting down at a bench in the park to people watch gives you a reminder of how amazingly different we all are.

You don’t have to be creepy about it — just take some time to observe the world, people, animals, or traffic around you. You may chuckle, you might compulsively let out an audible “awww” when that 70 year old couple walks by holding hands, but most of all, for a few minutes, you’ll have a window into the world and be given a new perspective about those around you — weird, stressed, beautiful, tired, chaotic, hilarious, important people. It may sound strange, but it’s as entertaining as it is inspiring.

Plan for an Afternoon Coffee Run

We may do this one a bit too often, but that’s because it’s my favorite way to take a quick mid-afternoon break followed by a well-earned pick-me-up to power through the rest of the workday. I don’t drink coffee after 3pm, because otherwise I won’t sleep that night, but a 2pm coffee run? I will never turn that down.

One thing that’s helped N and I adapt well to the work-from-home environment was the simple process of, you know, getting dressed… every day. Sure, we have our share of days where nothing we wear nothing but spandex or french terry, but we generally give a real effort to put on clothes that make us feel like we’re going somewhere (even if that place is actually 8 feet away).

With any of these errands or ideas, it helps me so much to create a full experience by getting dressed for the moment. Again, the little things matter, especially right now. To hopefully make the dressing up side of things easier and more fun for you, I’ve put together some of my favorite under-$50 picks from Walmart’s fall collection. I hope these pieces and ideas add more joy to your days this fall!


Today’s look is sponsored by Walmart



• leave a comment •

  1. Laura says:

    Omg !!!! These are so good. I was just talking to a coworker about people watching. Love it!
    Thank you for the play list and I have a great few new things to add to my Saturday/Sunday .

  2. Rebecca says:

    Loved this little read. A great reminder to embrace life’s simple pleasures 🙂

  3. Joan says:

    Terrific post, Anna. I love all your suggestions. Plus, your “Like a Nancy Meyers Film” playlist – and other playlists – on Spotify are terrific!!

  4. […] 5 Simple Pleasures to Brighten Your Day this Fall. I love the last three ideas in this post and I just clicked open that playlist! Finding beauty and joy in the small things really resonates with me. But I have to find a way to slow down enough to do it! […]

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