Welcome to Fall

October is here, also known as Best Month. For someone who hates the cold, I sure do love October. The weather is always gorgeous, leaves start to get the faintest tinge of color, and the feeling of nostalgia is thick in the air. October is also my birthday, which might be another teeny (huge) reason I love it so much. And Halloween. How could anyone not love October? 

We're slowly getting our apartment the way we like it. I wanted to show more pictures of how it's coming along, but I appear to have lost our camera charger so I need to wait on a new one to come so I can share. One of my biggest goals for this fall is to finish our place, but unfortunately that unemployment life doesn't pay much. 

I like to make a list every year of things I'd like to do during each season and I occasionally share them on here. This year I wrote one for Kansai Scene,  Five Tips for a Fabulous Fall ,  that appears on their website and in print at select stores around Kansai. If you see a copy while you're out and about, pick one up and let me know what you think! I'm doing some restaurant reviews for them if you're ever in the mood for some good eats around Kansai. 

There are a few things I'd like to add to that list for me personally.

  • Cook with seasonal ingredients. There is such an abundance of fun fall flavors I want to work with. I'd love to try Kurigohan again. My first attempt a few years ago was a definite bust. I still haven't made that pecan pie yet and my southern genes are crying for one. 
  • Go to a new prefecture. I still haven't properly been to Mie yet. I can't believe I haven't been out there to see one of Japan's most important shrines. That needs to change pronto. 
  • Lose 10 pounds. I really let myself go these past few months. Time to get back on that healthy eating wagon. 
  • Finish a project I've been working on for a year. I've had something I've veeerrryyyy slowly been working on since last November. I want that finished by December. I'll share more details once they've been sorted.
  • Find one other publication to start writing for. I love writing travel and restaurant reviews. Nothing would make me happier than to start a career out of that, but that takes years. I've started out with Kansai Scene, but I need to be aggressive about finding more outlets.

Our start to fall has been mostly lazy. We had a delicious breakfast of carrot cake pancakes yesterday morning out on our balcony. It's really not big enough to be a real balcony, but we crammed a set of Ikea patio furniture on it anyway. Yesterday was the first time the weather felt nice enough that we wanted to eat outside. I hope we get many more patio breakfasts this fall, especially with those carrot cake pancakes. I used a recipe on Smitten Kitchen, but I substituted yogurt for the buttermilk and added in some almonds. I tend to forget that you can use yogurt or yogurt-whey in place of buttermilk in baking or cooking, but I really shouldn't let it slip my mind. I think it adds a moistness that the regular milk + vinegar combo doesn't create. 

Do you have a fall to-do list this year? Share below if you do!

Want to see more fall? Click here and here.