Although we enjoy what what comes with fall — Thanksgiving, cozy sweaters and tasty comfort foods — there’s a slight sadness that creeps in knowing those long summer days are on their way out.

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This year, I’m determined not to waste the next eight months waiting for the warmer weather to roll back in, and instead, embrace the chilly season upon us. The first place to start? By giving the most important meal of the day a serious overhaul.

So, to make your breakfast oatmeal even better than that bowl of [insert your favourite sugary cereal here] you’re nearly sick of anyway, I’ve put together four easy topping combinations that will totally take that bowl of oatmeal from blah to wow!

First, know how to cook the perfect bowl of oatmeal. Start with a small pot on medium heat and combine ½ cup rolled oats (steel cut works too) with ½ cup water and ½ cup milk of your choice. Stir it occasionally for about five minutes, until the oats thicken.

Then, try one of these tasty topping combos:

1. Pumpkin
Before removing your oats from the stove after cooking, stir in ¼ cup canned pumpkin and 2 Tbsp cottage cheese. Then, remove from stove, plate, and sprinkle with toasted almond slices, cinnamon and nutmeg.

2. Banana & Peanuts
Before cooking your oats, add a thinly sliced banana and mix with other ingredients until the banana melts away. When finished cooking, remove from stove, plate, and sprinkle with chopped, salted peanuts.

3. PB&J
After making the oatmeal, remove from stove and stir in 1 Tbsp crunchy peanut butter and 1 Tbsp strawberry jam. Plate, then sprinkle with granola.

4. Chocolate & Coconut
After the oatmeal has been made, stir in a tsp of cocoa powder and a teaspoon of shredded coconut. Plate, and then top with slivered almonds and chocolate chips.

headshot Renée Reardin is a lifestyle writer and stylist living in Toronto. To learn more about her, visit www.reneereardin.com, and follow her on Twitter @reneereardin.