Autumn charm: The joys of parenting that come with the turning of the leaves

Posted in Family.

Autumn is now officially here. And after a summer of long days, hot nights, and plenty of splashy fun, it’s easy to feel a bit sad as the days start to get shorter and the mornings feel a little cooler on the skin.

But as the cosiness of the new season gently falls upon us, I am reminded once again just how lovely it is to put the kids into flannelette pjs. 

Here’s why.

Goodbye summer vibes

Maybe it’s because we’ve endured a particularly hot, dry and burn-y summer this year, or maybe it’s because I am more of a shoulder season lover, but I am looking forward to the weather feeling a little crisper, fresher any day now.

Sure, like most families, we’ve enjoyed a fun summer. One where our boys rode their bikes past their bedtime because it was too light to sleep, and I brushed off sandy bottoms after a swim at the beach too many times to remember. But I am done with summer.

Summer is a delicious season where it’s easy to forget about routines, throw caution to the wind and have a picnic at dusk on a school night – and also enjoy a decent chunk of time off work and school. Yay, holidays!

BUT summer is also a season of feeling spent. Of the long days exhausting everyone. Of little people losing their appetites because it’s “too hot”, of being worried the baby is overheating, of toddlers not sleeping well because the mozzies are biting and of school kids complaining they are ‘melting’ when they get home from wearing socks and leather shoes ALL DAY.

So although the summer vibes we’ve all enjoyed are over, so are the summer whines.

And I for one am VERY happy about that.

Two boys at the beach in the water feature

Cooler change brings cooler kids

When I put an extra layer on the beds and stash the boy’s PJ shorts in the bottom drawer, I know it means better sleep – for the whole household.

The shorter days mean bedtime is more distinguishable and there is no trying to black out the sun with curtains.

Bedtime routine is more easily followed because it feels like, well, night time.

Then there are no mozzies annoying anyone and the baby’s TOG sleeping bag is just right because the temperature is more predictable.

The shorter days also suit us because my kids are early risers, so getting them to sleep earlier means more hours of shut eye, which everyone is better for having.

My eldest boy and husband, who are both bothered by the heat, also become happier. More chilled. Easier. They are born for shoulder seasons!

Cosy but comfortable

Because it isn’t too cold yet (and no, for the record, I am NOT a fan of winter), autumn weather always feels ‘just right’ to me. Sure, it is the season to always carry a cardi and pop one in the kindy bag, but it is nice. Fresh. Comfortable.

Bath time is also lovely in autumn as everyone enjoys a longer soak. In summer, swimming often negates the bath, which is another thing that derails the evening routine and in winter they simply don’t want to shed their warm clothes. So there’s the predictable nagging. And the thing kids never understand is that we hate the nagging even more than they do.

So autumn is the season for splashing, soaking, playing with tug boats and enjoying nudie towel cuddles, minus the nagging.

Still fun

While it might not be up there in the waterside fun stakes in the minds of our kids, autumn outdoor fun is more laid back, peaceful and simple.

Just think how much your toddler loves the sound of the crunching leaves and how all kids delight in tossing a handful of colourful leaves into the air.

Also, with autumn, comes that sweet-smelling rain that lures our kids outside like curious cats. Donning little gumboots and raincoats, an entire afternoon of fun can be had just jumping in puddles and walking around the garden holding a miniature umbrella!

Autumn also means park plays are not limited by the sun’s rays being too hot or the days being too cold to leave the house. You can get to the playground at lunch time and not need to worry about applying suncream.

See? What’s NOT to love about parenting in autumn?

Bring. It. On, I say!


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