Colorful leaves, crispy coolness, warm apple cider, hot cocoa, and pumpkin treats… fall is (finally) in the air.

Plan some fall fun with these sustainable living tips and activities for the whole family.

Say no to faux fall decor.

When it comes to autumn decor, choose the real thing over cheap plastic decor made in China. Use real corn, hay bales, and corn stalks to make beautiful displays in and outside your home.

This supports our local farms and helps the earth by relying on natural items rather than plastic that will one day end up in a landfill.

Most local farms that offer pumpkin patches will also offer these seasonal decorative items, too.

Speaking of pumpkin patches…

Make a visit to your local pumpkin patch.

Although we do not grow pumpkins, we definitely support local farms in our area that grow them! A visit to a pumpkin patch is a fun and inexpensive outing for the whole family. Some farms even offer other autumn activities, like hayrides or corn mazes.

In Middle Tennessee, there are a few different farms you can visit for some fall fun!

Gentry’s Farm:

Located right here in our own Franklin, TN, Gentry’s Farm is a fun fall stop for everyone. Grab a pumpkin or two for your home, take a walk through the corn maze, enjoy pumpkin bread and farm games when you make a visit to this historic working farm. Admission for fall activities is $8.

Walden Farm:

Located south of Nashville in Smyrna, you can spend the day at Walden Farm picking out a pumpkin, taking a hayride, watching the farm animals, and treating your family to “finger licking country delights” like hotdogs and funnel cakes. Admission is free!

Lucky Ladd Farm:

Located in Eagleville, TN, Lucky Ladd Farm is an “Ag-Venture Farm Fun Park.” Named the #1 pumpkin patch in the state by the Travel Channel, you know that the kids will love a trip to pick out pumpkins and gourds and more. Kids can also enjoy the petting zoo, pony rides, and corn maze. There are fees for farm admission and additional activities.

Honeysuckle Hill Farm:

Found in Springfield, TN, Honeysuckle Hill Farm offers its annual fall festival, featuring its country music corn maze, hillbilly pig races, singing chicken show, the nighttime pumpkin express light show, bonfires, and of course a good old fashioned pumpkin patch. Admission to the fall festival does come with a fee.

Snack on pumpkin seeds.

When carving a pumpkin, don’t just throw the seeds in the trash—make a snack out of them! Save the seeds, dry them, and toast them for a yummy snack. This is a fun “cooking” activity to do with your kids!

Build a homemade scarecrow with your kids.

Here’s a fun fall craft that takes only a few materials but will create tons of memories for you and your children or grandchildren!

Using just hay, old clothing, and a burlap bag, this post from Sugar, Spice, and Glitter walks us through how to make a simple scarecrow.

We love the way she describes the benefits of this hands-on craft:

“The sensory input of being outdoors, feeling the rough, crunchy texture of the hay contrasting with the soft fabric, using our hands to push and pull the hay and clothing around to form the scarecrows body, while listening to the rustling of the hay mixed with the other sounds of fall – all of these wonderful stimuli are amazing for building neural pathways and developing healthy brains in early childhood. (Not to mention the amazing memories you’re creating and health benefits of being outside.)”

Make a no-sew teepee.

Make a Thanksgiving-themed craft with your kids! Using old sheets and PVC pipe, you can create your own no-sew teepee; you can then use the opportunity to talk about the pilgrims and the Native Americans. The kids can paint the sheets for some additional fun!