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Fun with the Family - Julie Lavender
Fall in love with all your family this autumn
Julie Lavender
Julie Lavender

October ushered in only slightly cooler mornings and evenings, but that’s just enough to alert us south Georgia folks that autumn is really, truly heading our way. Fall in love all over again with family members as you enjoy an awesome autumn with the ones you love most. Take in outdoor activities like crisp, evening walks, pumpkin and scarecrow sightings, football games, apple cider sipping on the porch, and so much more. Try out some of these wild, but real holidays and create some unique family ones, too. 

Happy Fall, Y’all!

➤ National Chili Month – Work together in the kitchen to stir up this recipe to warm the tummies on a cool evening. Consider doubling the recipe to package and freeze some for later. In a large pot, heat one tablespoon of vegetable oil. Add one large onion, diced, and four cloves of garlic, minced. Cook and stir just until vegetables are softened. Remove the onion and garlic with a slotted spoon and set aside. To the pan, add one pound of ground beef and brown. Drain meat, then return the meat, onion, and garlic to the pan. Add two tablespoons chili powder, one tablespoon ground cumin, one tablespoon paprika, salt and pepper to taste, two teaspoons tomato paste, one and one-half cups beef broth, and one 28-ounce can of tomato sauce. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low and let simmer until slightly thickened, about 30 minutes. Stir often. Add one 28-ounce can of baked beans and simmer another 15 minutes. Serve with favorite chili toppings and enjoy! 

➤ National Go On A Field Trip Month – Who says field trips are only for school kids? Find a fall-festive locale to visit, load up the entire family, and make a new field trip memory. Look for places with fall décor of hay bales and pumpkins for photo ops. Travel to a pumpkin patch or corn maze. Take in a museum you’ve never visited. Find a fall festival to attend in another county, preferably one you’ve never explored. Enjoy a family field trip, take lots of pictures, nibble on some yummy fall food, and make new autumn memories 

➤ Photographer Appreciation Month – Send your favorite family photographer a thank you note and book a new family photo shoot for the season. Or, make plans to take tons of family photos throughout the month in different seasonal poses. Let each family member take turns serving as the photographer for the event and click away on a cell phone. Print the photos and make an autumn album of fun family adventures for the month. 

➤ Positive Attitude Month – Read some of these books about kids who might could use some pointers on having a positive attitude. Then discuss some ways your family can have a more positive outlook each day. Check out these fun books: Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day by Judith Viorst, Grumpy Monkey by Suzanne Lang, The Do-Over Day by Julia Inserro, Just a Bad Day by Mercer Mayer and Even Superheroes Have Bad Days by Shelly Becker.  

Tackling Hunger Month – Spend an afternoon shopping together for food items that you can donate to the food bank, church food pantry, or a family in need. Give thanks for your blessings and talk about sharing our wealth of blessings with others. 

Make it an awesome autumn with the ones you love. Enjoy a beautiful new season and make memories to treasure throughout the next several months. Happy fall to all! 


Julie Lavender loves the colors of autumn and is looking forward to somewhat-cooler temperatures this fall. The Statesboro native is celebrating this October with the release of her parenting book, Strength for All Seasons: A Mom’s Devotional of Powerful Verses and Prayers.  

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