Autumn is arguably the most hyped season for Instagram pictures of teens doing cute, seasonal activities. A typical fall picture will likely include some combination of Uggs, pumpkins, leaves and scarves. The season has its own distinct aesthetic that populates countless, newly-turned orange-hued social media feeds.
It may be hard to find fall-friendly activities around Palo Alto and the larger Bay Area, but the trek is well worth it for that one, Instagram-worthy picture. To create more time to edit those essential fall pictures and spend less time searching for autumnal “adventures”, here are some seasonal pursuits that can be found around the Bay, as well as a few interests that can be enjoyed right in your own home.
The Classic Pumpkin Patch
Pumpkin patches can be found all around the Bay Area, but a few that have a rural, farm feel are in Half Moon Bay, like Farmer John’s Pumpkin Farm, and Pastorino’s. There are a few that can be found on San Mateo Road in Half Moon Bay. To make the most of the pumpkin-picking experience, one must dress the part. The recommendation is a sweater and boots, and then pose for the camera holding a prized pumpkin amid the hundreds scattered across a field, with a backdrop of the Santa Cruz Mountains.
If you are feeling particularly Pinterest-y and are up for the preparation, an autumn tea party in your own backyard is the way to go. Force some friends to come over and bribe them with food. Make a pumpkin treat, such as mini pumpkin bundt cakes, triangle sandwiches and brew a spiced, fall-flavored tea. It does not matter if tea is not your cup of tea, because it looks cute and artsy people drink tea. If a nice tea set is on hand, use that to sip the tea, or just take a picture mid-pour. The precisely placed tea and bite-sized food, begs for a photo to be taken of it. To get inspiration for the photo, look at famous food Instagram accounts, and pretend to be them. While in a backyard, look up and admire the fall foliage of the trees against the grey sky.
Autumn in California means being buried alive in pumpkin flavored foods. Every year Trader Joe’s continually whips out new, daring products during fall. Use this as an opportunity to invite some friends over and have them bake or bring their favorite pumpkin or fall treat. Trader Joe’s comes in handy here — if baking a pumpkin treat takes too much time, just grab a pumpkin mix or other pumpkin product from the infinite choices the store offers. Once everyone has chosen their food, put them all together and Snapchat the array of pumpkin magnificence. While munching on the seasonal treats, choose the latest American Horror Story episode, or a scary movie, to watch.
Although California does not get the full force of autumn like the East Coast, the state still has noticeable changes in the color of leaves, that gives a sense of the transitioning seasons. The Skyline Ridge Open Nature Preserve, located on Street A Skyline and Street B Alpine in Los Altos, offers moderate hikes that provide a view of redwood, oak and fir forests with fall foliage. Pop on a beanie, a sweater and some hiking boots, and assemble in front of the fall foliage for someone to take a picture. For the picture, there is a choice of whether to smile at the camera, or stare admirably at the beauty of nature with your back turned to the camera — however either pose works.
As the weather hardly gets colder, the interior of your home should adopt a cozy atmosphere, with a verging on oppressive, pumpkin spice smell in the air. If it is difficult to decide from the five pumpkin scented candles at Bath and Body Works, they also sell “Fresh Apple, and the conceptual “Autumn”, “Leaves” and “Sweater Weather” candles. To add to the fall feel, stop by Trader Joe’s and pick up mini pumpkins to adorn a windowsill or two. If you have a night in, draw a bath and light the candles. Baths are a great way to relax after a long, tiring week and adding bath bombs and other playful bath objects can make the experience fun, and make your skin soft and smell good. Lush Cosmetics has a Halloween collection of bath bombs and jellies that will make any bath time magical. Throw in a sparkly pumpkin or two, Snapchatting a picture in the bath after the bubbles have formed and the water has turned a pretty color. Before hopping in the tub, create a fall playlist on Spotify with mellow, acoustic songs to create the mood. Soak in the suds, and the magnificent scent of artificial pumpkins.