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Fun with Family with Julie Lavender: Welcome September with some autumnal adventure
Julie Lavender
Julie Lavender

    With the tease of slightly cooler temperatures on a few recent mornings, the promise of autumn beauty seems imminent. Shades of orange, crimson and golden yellow wait patiently to burst forth in farmers’ fields and along forests’ edges. Watch closely this month as leaves begin to show hints of seasonal changes, and take in the aroma of freshly plowed fields. Savor the last official days of summer on the calendar and welcome the newness of autumn with celebrations and fun times. Choose some of the following holidays with which to create family memories, or create your own fall fun.
    Labor Day — Although this special day to honor workers was Sept. 2, choose another day this month to “work” hard at playing with the family. Inflate a balloon for each family member — watch little ones with balloons closely — and work hard to keep the balloon suspended with just your head. When someone’s balloon touches the floor, ask that person to give clues about a specific job or profession for other family members to guess. The person who guesses correctly gets to choose the next way to bop the balloon. Try using only your elbow or knee, nose or pinkie finger. Can you think of a job that begins with each letter of the alphabet?
    National Honey Month — What a sweet holiday to celebrate with those you love! Create a sweet and salty snack by honey-roasting pecans. Combine 1/2 cup honey and 2 tablespoons of butter in a saucepan. Bring to a boil and boil for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Pour the mixture over 4 cups of pecan halves and toss gently. Spread the nuts on a foil-lined jellyroll pan and bake at 325 degrees for 10–12 minutes until lightly browned; do not overcook. Allow to cool completely. If desired, toss cooled nuts in a mixture of cinnamon and sugar before serving. While enjoying the snack, read a couple of books from the library about honey. Choose a selection of nonfiction books about bees or some fiction favorites like “The Berenstain Bear’s Big Honey Hunt” or “The Bee Tree” by Patricia Polacco.
    Love Note Day — Personally, I think this day should be celebrated more than once a year, but in any case, celebrate with great gusto. Write notes on mirrors with lipstick, pen love messages on sticky notes and hide them throughout the house, write mushy lines on stationery or napkins and hide them inside lunchboxes, or spell out a memo with magnets on the refrigerator. Get creative and include a trinket, like a bouncy ball with a note that says “I have a ball with you.” Cheesy, I know, but find imaginative ways to express your love to family members today — and tomorrow, and next week, and many times throughout the month.
    Skyscraper Day — Visit websites online to take virtual tours of architectural masterpieces in places like New York City, Seattle, Atlanta, Los Angeles, Boston and others. What’s the tallest building in the United States? In the world? A timeline on shows the history of the tallest buildings in the world for each year since 1890. After learning bits of trivia about skyscrapers, gather a few boxes and cans from the pantry or craft closet and create a skyscraper of your own.
    Autumn — Welcome the beautiful season of autumn with a fun craft. Cut a tree trunk from brown construction paper and attach it to a larger sheet of construction paper. Glue a small, white paper plate at the top of the tree trunk. Place small amounts of fall-colored paints in bowls and supply cotton swabs. Have your children dip the end of the cotton swab in paint and then touch the paper plate with the paint to print a leaf. Fill the plate with fall colors, and hang the picture when the paint dries.
    Purchase a fall kind of treat, like candies in fall colors or a pumpkin pie, and present it to your family with a note that says “I’ve fall-en for you!” Until next month, happy fall, y’all.
    Statesboro native Julie Bland Lavender is married to David Lavender and enjoys celebrating with children Jeremy, Jenifer, Jeb Daniel and Jessica.

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