Autumn, YOU ARE EXQUISITE!
(If you’ve never seen the episode of 30 Rock called ‘Black Tie’ whence that reference comes, go watch it now. That’s an order.)
I do so love autumn. I’m not sure about autumn coming halfway through summer, but I’ll take it. I’ll take it because it means that I get to wear boots, and boots are my wardrobe staple.
In fact, the other day — during a bit of a low moment — I wondered whether my students would ever remember a) anything that I taught them or b) that I always went the extra mile to make school better for them… and I concluded that they’d probably only ever remember Miss Gwynne as the lady with the silver necklaces and the black boots.
And the cool stickers.
It could be worse. I could be remembered as very, very frightening or as carrying a strange aroma.
But, speaking of teaching and language and spelling and things in that vein, I thought that I’d ask you about capitalising seasons. Do you write Summer or summer? Winter or winter? Grammar Girl says no capitals. I always type a capital and then delete it because I hate ‘getting things wrong’. Why do we capitalise Monday and March, though, and not Autumn?
Now that it’s March and officially autumn, I’ve turned my thinking to essentials for the season. I tend to throw out a lot of stuff from year to year because my body changes so much and so often. So, aside from a lesson in editorial conventions from an authoritative source, here are my must-haves for the next three months. (That’s autumn in the southern hemisphere. With no capital.)
● Vibrant, zingy marmalade for your toast. I heart marmalade — on good toasted sourdough with generous lashings of butter. I like most things that come slathered in butter. This Frank Coopers 3-Fruit Marmalade looks
● A cosy throw blanket for your knees or for your cat to shed all over. I’m lucky that I have a quilt-crazy mother who makes gorgeous blankets courtesy of some kind of pathological impulse. However, I still covet the store-bought kind from time to time, and this Country Road number has caught my eye.
● A dark, sexy nail polish to celebrate the cooler weather. I’m too lazy to attend to more than my toenails, and even then I con my sister into painting them for me half the time. This iridescent aubergine shade is called Branwen’s Feathers (3-Free by Butter London).
● A genuinely soothing lip balm. I have more lip balms than I can poke a lip at, but if I were adding another one to my collection, I’d make it a MooGoo CowLick stick — 100% natural and edible!
● A soft, lightweight hoodie for in-between weather days. Sussan‘s loungewear range is the queen of lightweight hoodies, in my opinion. Soft, slouchy — but not so daggy that you couldn’t traipse off to the store for marmalade and bread while wearing one.
● A favourite, weathered vintage paperback for chilly nights on your own. I don’t always re-read books. However, I have a collection of vintage paperbacks that I read once every several years, and Mary Stewart’s thriller-romances rate near the top. This Rough Magic is a particular favourite. I also love novels by MM Kaye, Gerald Durrell, and Georgett Heyer.
● Black ankle boots. Because black ankle boots. That’s why. They go with everything. Except nighties, I guess. And probably bikinis. This lovely pair is from Witchery.