Stuck in summer? Feeling unmotivated? Does college still feel like summer camp? Let’s get in the school year mindset! This is the perfect guide to feel refreshed and ready for fall.
By Anna Pearson
#1: Make a wardrobe change
One of the easiest (and most self-explanatory) things to do as autumn approaches is to switch up your daily outfits. As the chill in the air increases, so will the amount of crewnecks, hoodies, turtlenecks and flannels being worn around campus. I’m sure everyone would love to see your summer pedicure, but fall calls for closed toed shoe options — let’s bring out the Converse, Chelsea boots, Timberlands and Birkenstock Bostons. Throw a jean jacket or windbreaker on, and bam! Perfect fall outfit vibes. No worries if the weather isn’t cold enough yet, a simple black jean moment will have to do.
#2: Shop in seasonal decor sections
Imagine yourself going to Target for the fifth time this month, and being slapped in the face with the $1, $3 and $5 section, full of fall and Halloween-themed goodies. Instantly, you are thrown back to trick-or-treating on Halloween night in 2012 when you met your crush’s mom at their house and they gave you a full size candy bar. Life is good. But besides that, the aisles of Target are a labyrinth of goodies, and the fall section is no different. Buy some cute little fake pumpkins to put on your windowsill, and perhaps a cheesy but appropriate “It’s Fall Y’all” sign to hang up in your dorm. Go crazy with the decorations, get in the mood.
#3: Go to a football game
Fortunately here at Bethel, there’s football games every Saturday, sometimes right in our own backyard at Royal Stadium. Grab some blue and yellow spirit-wear (or check what the game theme is if it’s at home) and head on over to cheer on the highs and lows of college football (if you’ve ever seen the show “Riverdale,” you’ll get the reference). As the leaves fall, so does the temperature, so make sure to get as many friends as possible to cozy up on the colder weekends and cheer on your favorite players. The perfect fall sport to bring together the Bethel community and make Thanksgiving seem closer than ever.
#4: Romanticize coffee shops
Nothing screams “FALL” more than hopping in your car with a backpack full of the week’s homework and Googling directions to the nearest local coffee shop. Something about small, privately-owned coffee shops give off an inherent spooky, fall vibe. Find a booth in the back corner, set up your homework spot for the day and order the hot version of whatever your favorite summer iced drink is. Slowly sipping away on caffeine while grinding out hours of school work surely will get you in the autumn, back-to-school mood.
#5: Listen to some new music
There’s always a “song of the summer,” right? But what about the song of the fall? Where’s your new fall playlist, littered with songs including various fall months in the title, the acoustic guitar strums and alternative indie artists whose songs play in local coffee shops only. Spotify, Apple Music or wherever you get your music all have specially-curated fall playlists filled with hundreds of songs just like these. My personal favorite example is “October” by HAPPY LANDING, the perfect subtle fall vibe to get you wishing for pumpkins, apple cider, scarves, fallen leaves and more. And if that’s not really your vibe, there’s always the classic Halloween hits, including “Spooky, Scary Skeletons” by Andrew Gold and “Thriller” by Michael Jackson.
#6: Change out seasonal items
This one is definitely broad, but think about the sights, sounds and smells that you associate with summer. Anything from perfume and lotion scents to your phone lockscreen and ringtone can get you in the mood for a new season. Bath and Body Works releases a new collection of scents every year, so stock up on the Sweet Cinnamon Pumpkin, Champagne Apple and Honey and Leaves-scented hand soaps, fragrance mists and hand sanitizers while you can. Although the photo of you and your bestie at the beach has been the cutest lockscreen for summer, maybe toning it down to a Pinterest photo of some fall leaves, pumpkins or a throwback picture of you and your significant other from last Halloween will help you get in the fall mood. Or, if you’re a freshman, maybe keeping your class schedule as your lockscreen for a few weeks isn’t a bad idea.
#7: Pumpkin flavored everything
Saving the best for last, I’m sure everyone was wondering where the infamous Pumpkin Spice Latte would land on this list. As someone who loves taste-testing new foods, trying the weirdest and most interesting pumpkin-flavored items in fall is a must-do. Anything from pretzels and pastries to soda and candy have been made into a fall food by now. Pumpkin spice lattes have been in coffee shops since the end of August, so if you haven’t gotten one yet, you’re already behind on that train. Even if it doesn’t quite feel like time to adventure to the pumpkin patch or apple orchard yet, getting some pumpkin-flavored snacks the next time you run for groceries is a sure way to make it feel truly like fall.