Yes! Finally! Fall is here! After a sweltering summer, I can (almost) forget that winter is coming, because fall has finally arrived. Fall is my absolute favorite season — pumpkin patches, apple picking, and cute boots abound. It’s also time to really get cozied up at home after a day out adventuring. And I don’t know about you, but I am obsessed with having a cozy-smelling home once the windows are closed for the year.

Unfortunately, lots of scented products are bad for our health and our indoor air quality. Most candles and scented wax can do more harm than good, especially with children in the home. Here are a few ways I love to scent our home that are totally natural and kid-safe:

Make applesauce

Let’s be honest: You need to use up the apples from your day spent apple picking anyway, right? This recipe is our family favorite because it is rich, creamy, and requires very little prep work, and roasting in the oven permeates the house with the smell of apple pie.

Make a pot simmer

Pinterest is full of recipes for various pot simmers, but it’s also very easy to create your own. Just slice up some fruit, add a few cinnamon sticks or cloves and some hardy herbs (like rosemary or even pine sprigs) to a pot of water, and let it simmer on the stove. Bonus: It’s a natural humidifier. The only downside to this method is making sure your water level stays high and you don’t let your pot scorch. My favorite is a few sprigs of rosemary, a sliced lemon, and a cinnamon stick. Mmmmm. And, don’t forget, if you refrigerate the mix when you’re done simmering, you can reuse the same pot simmer for a week. Just keep adding water!

Diffuse essential oils

If your children are old enough (over six months for most essential oils), you can throw a few drops in the diffuser and let it puff away. Essential oils may seem very expensive at first, but you only need a few drops, and you should only diffuse for 30 minutes at a time. The smell will linger. A fall favorite in our home is two drops sweet orange, two drops cinnamon leaf, and one drop ginger.