Sitting in Our Tree


Charlottesville, VA | Pt. 1

travel, fallKelsey Bethune

We decided when we moved to DC (read: when money got crazy tight) to spend money for birthday, anniversaries & holidays on experiences rather than gifts for each other. It's been one of my favorite decisions we've ever made & I think it will carry over even after the eventual someday arrives where we aren't pinching pennies on every budget line. Our dream of traveling for our anniversary every year is still alive, even if we don't go very far.

This year's anniversary would count as one of those "not very far" years, which seemed fair after last year's cross country travel to Vancouver & Seattle. We hadn't put much thought into what we were doing to celebrate 7 years of marriage (!), especially since we have a baby now & babysitters are scarce. I think it was maybe 4 days out that we decided to just get out of the city for the weekend & booked a cabin in the Shenandoah Mountains.

Our anniversary, through no coincidence, falls on what is typically the most autumnal of weekends. Right when the leaves are beginning to change color but are still on the trees, right before apple picking season ends, right when all the pumpkin everythings show up on menus & grocery store shelves. Some years it's cooler than others, though this year it was still pretty warm. 

After a bit of crazy Sunday DC traffic (hence baby-in-sunglasses entertainment), we kicked off our trip with a stop at an apple orchard that we had all to ourselves. Crew was 10% interested in apples, 90% interested in eating leaves that gave Jared 100% of a heart attack. It was a perfectly quiet afternoon in the orchard for our tiny little family.

Rounding out this first year of Crew's "firsts", I can't help but think that even though this was his first apple picking trip, or his first Christmas, it's going to see like firsts all over again next year & the year after that as he becomes more aware of the places we're going & the things we're doing. & thank goodness, because these little "first" moments make my mama heart explode as we introduce him to the things we love & the traditions we keep.

I mean, look how proud he is of the leaf he picked. He's trying to kill me with cuteness, I know it.

It was our first trip of just-the-three-of us, & honestly, it was a dream. No distractions of laundry or grocery shopping or apartment cleaning... Just pure, unadulterated family time. Lots of face staring. Lots of baby loving. Lots of good conversation & talks of the future for Jared & I. I'd say a trip to the mountains is just what we needed. 

Pictures from Day 2 are up next!

The Bethune October Movie List

fall, halloweenKelsey BethuneComment

We've just returned from an oh-so-needed vacation, & while I'm aching to edit photos, I've spent nearly all of today playing catch up on upcoming Tart projects, cleaning up the night-before-we-leave storm we left behind, & unpacking five days worth of clothes that smell like the great outdoors. MMMMMmmmm.

Our trip was great (you'll see), but it is actually very wonderful to be home. Nonstop access to my Brita filter, being close enough to my Whole Foods to walk there with my eyes closed to satiate this week's nonstop craving for fresh pineapple, sleeping on my own pillow... The comforts of home can't be beat. But! We're also able to resume our October movie-thon, which I'm probably irrationally excited about but also is a little bit one of the best parts of marriage.

This list has been unofficial for years, growing annually as we hone in on our favorites. We almost never make it through the entire list, but it's nice to have options. It includes some movies that are simply very autumnal, & some movies that are more Halloween-centric. Both of us grew up with Halloween not REALLY being a thing, so a lot of Halloween classics for other people won't be found here. In fact, last year was the first time either of us ever watched Hocus Pocus (& loved it), & this year, we're trying out Beetlejuice, Halloweentown, & Rocky Horror Picture Show. I guess you'll have to check back next year to see if they make the cut!

In general, I don't like scary movies, gory movies, horror flicks, anything dealing with demonic anything/spiritual warfare, or end of the world movies where the dog dies. Consider that your disclaimer that this should probably be titled The Tamest Halloween Movies You Can Watch With Your Kid Sister. Jk, my kid sister is way more intense than I am.


There's nothing about this movie that is particularly fall, except for the opening scenes. But! I love it, & Jared likes it enough to watch it once a year. Watching it this year was particularly hear-warming since Juno is a month behind me on the pregnancy timeline. Cue tears because Jennifer Garner is an angel.

When Harry Met Sally
Easily one of my Top 5 movies, & Jared is now a firm believer. This is usually the first movie we watch in October. This movie spans both years & seasons, but there's that one scene that is so quintessentially fall in NYC that this has always stuck with me as an autumn movie.

You’ve Got Mail
Easily one of Jared's Top 5 movies (he once watched this like 4 times in a row while sick, including the soundtrack-only version), & I am now a firm believer. Not that I wasn't before, but he just kinda... enlightened me. There are some fall-y elements to this one, though we also find it appropriate for Christmas & welcoming spring.

Garden State
Another movie that Jared got me hooked on, way back in 2006. We LOVE Zach Braff. Have fun exploring the infinite abyss!

Remember the Titans
If you've been reading this blog or following me on social media for any amount of time, you probably know that this is inexplicably my favorite movie. What better fall theme than high school football? (The only kind of football either of us can stomach, tbh.)

Nightmare Before Christmas
UMMMMM, duh. I see the case for this being a Christmas(ish) movie, so this is usually my preferred Halloween night movie of choice. Because yes, Halloween night is typically us on the couch, watching a movie. #apartmentlife #nokidsinthisneighborhood #wedontparty Side note: Vitamin String Quartet covered selections from the soundtrack. Listen here!

Just a good ol' cute but creepy but good movie, & a perfect follow up to Nightmare Before Christmas.

Corpse Bride
Have to complete the creepy stop-motion Halloween trifecta with this one. Aside from the pretty full storyline, the soundtrack is also really great in this movie.

Hocus Pocus
A new-to-us-classic-to-everyone-else favorite.

How can you nooooot watch Ghostbusters in October? We might give the new one a try this year, but I'm just not convinced there will be enough Bill Murray.

Harry Potter anything
This is a good option when we both still have work to do in the evening after dinner. Just pop any one of these in & we at least FEEL like we're being festive.

Young Frankenstein
I have Mama Essmann to thank for my love of this movie. It's an oldie, & if you've never experienced a Mel Brooks movie, be prepared for some weird humor. But you just can't go wrong with Gene Wilder, so trust us on this one.

Shaun of the Dead
Okay, this is for sure one from Jared, & I've fully adopted it. As previously mentioned, I don't like gore or horror, so most zombie movies don't make the cut. But this one is funny/British enough that I can get past the ick.

Honestly, I don't love this movie... It's pretty weird & makes me question everything I know about muppets. But thanks to my older sister, I usually watch this one every other year.

Edward Scissorhands
The first of the Johnny Depp trifecta. This was the first cult classic movie I ever forced myself to watch & like at probably too young of an age, but it stuck. Also, nice to revisit baby Wynona after a summer of Stranger Things, amiright?

Sleepy Hollow
This movie does not get enough creepy credit, in my humble opinion. If you haven't given this one a go yet, let this be the year. 2 of 3 for your Johnny Depp Halloween-athon.

Sweeney Todd
Maybe it's the musical theatre kid I married, maybe it's just the nostalgia of Johnny Depp's good years, but this is just a solid movie with plenty of tame *ish* gore. 3 of 3 for your evening with Johnny (this time he's the bad guy), but also how about a nice round of applause for Tim Burton, who is the personification of Halloween, basically.

The Mummy
Jared hates that this is on the list *heheheh* but GOSH I love this movie. Just enough scarabs to make your skin crawl, just enough Brendan Fraser to make you feel safe & warm. Bonus: There's a 70/30 chance that this is movie is playing on a cable channel RIGHT AT THIS VERY MOMENT. Seriously, it's always on.

The Village
Eerie, weird, & aesthetically beautiful, Jared would watch this movie once a week if I'd let him. The bad guys aren't what they seem = my kinda scary movie.

The Sixth Sense
I'm still surprised every. time. at the end of this movie. Besides Ghostbusters, this is about as ghostly as I get at Halloween. (Yes, including Casper. I didn't grow up watching it, & as an adult, I just can't deal.)

As a ps. I linked most of these to IMDB, only because it shows you if any of these movies are going to be broadcast on TV any time soon... Which is nice, if you don't have $3.99 to blow on 20 movies in 31 days. Happy marathoning!