[twitter]There is still, officially, a few weeks left in summer – according to the calendar, anyway.

But we all know it’s over. It’s done. Finished. Kaput.

It was fun while it lasted. The warm, basking heat of the sun, the cold, crisp drinks in our hands have been put away until we somehow find them again on a winter vacation down south.

Yes, friends, summer is over. Here’s 6 ways you know it to be true.

It’s dark when you wake up

I used to bounce out of bed before 6am, light streaming in the window. Now I struggle to get up at 6:30, bonk my shin on a drawer and beg for coffee to wake me up.


When it’s dark, summer is over.

Pumpkin everything is everywhere

They squeaked the Pumpkin Spice Lattes onto the menu in late August this year, that’s offside. Wait until after Labour Day, eh? But it’s not just pumpkin lattes, it’s pumpkin everything now. There’s pumpkin scones, pumpkin pies, pumpkin beers, not to mention pumpkin Pringles, pumpkin vodka, and pumpkin Oreos.

great pumpkin

When the Great Pumpkin rises, summer is over.

You turn on the thermostat

Sometime in September, the temperature dips sharply overnight and you wander over to the dial and you give it a nudge. All summer long, my Nest has read “Away” as in “winter is far away,” but now it’s back to school for the smart thermostat to start learning our routines.

Nest thermostat

The first rumble of the furnace from the basement is a sure sign summer is over.

Christmas trees at Costco

These usually arrive before the Halloween candy is out, for some strange reason. Advent/Christmas calendars too.

Christmas 2009 is Around the Corner

When you’re going to get some big steaks for a hot bbq, turn a corner and see an inflatable lawn Santa flying in the rafters, summer is done.

You start reading the bible

The fall issue of Vogue is the biggest of the year. Often called “the bible,” the September issue is the most important magazine of the year. The 2014 edition weighs in at 2 3/4 pounds and sports more than 850 pages of must haves.

You may have bought it when it landed on shelves, but when you actually get down to reading that thing and craving the sweaters and scarves, summer is over.

You crave the snow on the mountains

Sometime in late August or early September, the high peaks of the mountains can get a little sprinkle of snow. Here, next to the Rockies, people gleefully check the webcams of their favourite runs to find out when the first flakes fall.

Ski Banff webcam

When you start staring at the snow forecast instead of the beach one, you’ve packed it in.

The morning is not the same as the afternoon

The mornings are getting brisker, so you bring a coat, maybe wear a sweater and pack a scarf. Then, sometime between your second meeting and your lunch break, the sun wakes up from the long rise to the high sky and blasts heat for the afternoon.

Patio Dining

Chilly mornings and afternoon patios are a sign that summer is over.

Thanks to Direct Energy for supporting Team Diabetes Canada and supplying me with a Nest so I can share my experience with you over the course of the year.Sign Up to the Direct Energy 5-Year Comfort & Control Dual Fuel Plan and receive:
– A fixed rate of 8.59¢/kWh for your Alberta electricity that won’t change for the entirety of your 5-year contract term – guaranteed!
– Flex-through Alberta natural gas with the security of a winter cap of $5.99/GJ*
– A Nest Learning Thermostat™ – valued at $249 – at no additional cost**

Direct Energy Nest

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