Be-leaf me, autumn is the best season

By Madalyn Watson | Reporter

Ever since I can remember, I have been enamored by the colors of fall. Most children, like myself, were struck with curiosity as the mysterious chlorophyll broke down the green within the leaves to reveal oranges, yellows and reds.

However, overtime my focus on colors expanded to: the grey turtleneck my mom sported on our road trips to the mountains, the black darkness cloaking haunted corn mazes and the splash of dark red cranberry sauce nestled up against slices of turkey on Thanksgiving day.

Autumn is the best time of year, and everyone should cherish it before the colors drain, turning into it into winter.

During the fall months, nature is strangely comforting. If it rains for a few days, the sun will suddenly appear and dry up all the puddles and the hem of my jeans. And if it’s too hot to wear new fall sweaters for a week, it will cool off the next. Switching between sunny, hot weather and stormy, cold weather — and just about everything in between — makes every day a new unexpected adventure.

The weather directly affects the second reason fall is the best: the fashion. Now, I can’t say that I am extremely up-to-date with what is considered “in,” but I know for a fact that a sweater is always reliable in autumn.

The increased popularity of thrifted, oversized and grandpa-esque sweaters in the past few years have made it even better. Paired with a jean skirt, some mom jeans or yoga pants, these sweaters complete the perfect autumn look.

One of my personal favorite autumn fashion icons is Nancy Thompson, played by Heather Langenkamp, in “The Nightmare on Elm Street” franchise. She pulls off the sweaters, light-washed jeans and the scared frizzy curls effortlessly.

Along with other classic horror films such as “Friday the 13th” and “Scream,” “The Nightmare on Elm Street” films are always playing on random channels during autumn, even after Halloween passes, which sanctifies autumn’s place as my No. 1 season.

Similar to the thematic films, brand new seasons of spooky television shows, like “American Horror Story,” return in the fall as new shows like “The Haunting of Hill House” and “Chilling Adventures of Sabrina,” emerge on the Netflix scene. I never run out of shows to binge when I am wrapped up in a blanket and sipping hot apple cider on a lazy autumn night.

This leads me to the popular food and drinks in autumn. Starting out with pumpkin spice flavored sustenance, I am not a fan of the Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte, PSL — this is probably the last thing you expected a girl who is writing about fall being the best season to say. I try it once each fall, hoping I’ll suddenly like it, but I like to stick with pumpkin flavored baked goods. My mother’s homemade pumpkin spice cookies and cupcakes and my grandfather’s pumpkin pie surpass the infamous PSL. I adore all the other hot drinks of fall, from tea and hot cider to other coffee products and hot chocolate.

Delicious meals like grilled cheese and tomato soup, or baked macaroni and cheese have always been associated with typical autumn days in my childhood. But the food is elevated to the next level on specials holidays.

The best holidays of the year are Halloween and Thanksgiving. Halloween allows people to disguise themselves as something they are not or reveal their true selves through a costume. Everyone’s imagination runs wild with creativity and wonder on Halloween. I also loved trick-or-treating, collecting candy and dressing up when I was a child. It wasn’t until I reached my teen years that I became obsessed with the horror film and haunted maze aspect of Halloween.

Thanksgiving is always about family for me, no matter how much my family has changed over the years. Since my freshman year of college, I have realized how important my family is to me because of the long distance separating us. Now that I am more grown up and on my own in more ways than I have ever been, I have learned to appreciate my family more.

I know a lot of students may debate me on this, since we have the stress of finals during the fall. And I agree with them; it really sucks to be spending all my time studying during a beautiful season like this. But it’s worth it, for many colorful reasons.