November 12, 2017:

Hola!

It's hard to believe, but winter has arrived early in my hometown. One week it was in the 70s and gorgeous outside, the next week it dropped down into the 40s and then boom, less than a week later, into the 30s. We've already had several hard freezes, the earliest that's happened since I moved here in 2014. Anyway, the trees had not even begun to turn color yet in the neighborhood - and now most of them are bare due to the many hard freezes and strong winds that blew most of the days last week. Wowsers! Today, however, the sun stayed out all day, there was no wind to speak of, and the temperatures felt positively balmy outside. I was very glad because I had to be out and about today.

So, the poor trees did not have a "fall" this year but we did get enough rain to ease my mind that my pines and shrubs will have enough moisture in the ground to survive the winter. The squirrels are SO fat and SO furry, I can't help but think they know we're in for a bad winter. Sigh. I'm way behind in everything including lots of garden clean-up that now I won't get to unless we get a few days of "Indian Summer," which doesn't seem likely this year. I did, however, get everything outdoors pretty much put away, except for the area rug (it needs to be "washed" with some soap and rinsed off) and the mosquito net curtains on my Shezebo. Now I'm already thinking about Christmas, and soon it will be here, before we know it! So, I figured it's about time I put up my "autumn" photographs from prior years as the seasonal header here at Maison Newton. Enjoy your Thanksgiving, that will be here soon and then it's into full-tilt Christmas decorating. Take care, everyone!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Tackling the Tree...

Good morning everyone!  It's a beautiful sunny day here, and calm too, but cooooollllddddd!  Only 28 degrees F, brrrrr.  It is supposed to get up to 41 today, though, so I may go out back later on when it warms up and do some much-needed raking!

But first things first.  I wonder if I'm turning into one of those "old people" who don't need much sleep?  The past few nights, I've been waking up at very early hours; Friday night I stayed in bed until until 5 a.m.  This morning I got up at 4:15 a.m.  Is this a sign of things to come -- i.e., never getting a good night's sleep again?  What am I saying - I have hardly had a good night's sleep since menopause came and went.

Today is Tree Day!  After I finished up the 2012 Christmas mantle/mantel yesterday, the tree was pulled out and put up in front of the round top window that overlooks the front yard in the front room.  How's that for a lot of fronts!  I cleaned it up and hope that any spiders who took up residence during the summer while the tree rested in its box in the garage have now vacated the premises.  Fair warning:  any spiders caught inside these premises in my living space will get sucked up by my handivac!  Last night I fired up the lights on this baby and boom!  No, the house didn't blow up, thank Goddess!  The entire room was flooded with what seemed like amazingly bright light!  Every year I have the same reaction -- I forget how bright those white lights are.  Here is my holey tree this morning with the early sunlight streaming in:




I briefly toyed with the idea yesterday of putting the tree in front of the staircase, across the room from the window.  In the years I've had this tree (nearly 8) it's never been in that spot; only one year did I move it into the corner NEXT to the window and I didn't like it there very much.  Moving the tree to the staircase wall would entail moving the heavy sofa out of its customary spot and away from the best vantage point for the t.v. on the mantle/mantel.  Because of the short cord on the t.v. and the lack of anything else in the room to place the t.v. on, my options are rather limited as to where it might go.  Well, we'll see.  Maybe next year.  One advantage to having the t.v. on the mantle/mantel is that I don't need to use as many decorations because of the space the t.v. takes up!  It's actually a money saver, come to think of it...

As you can see, plenty of holes in this tree. After spending what seemed like countless hours last year trying to get the sucker shaped perfectly, only to discover wherever I thought I was closing up one hole I was only making another (I think the breed in the dark, too), this year I'm turning over a lazy leaf and after futzing with it for about 20 minutes I said GOOD ENOUGH.  So, after I took a break from reading the Sunday paper earlier this morning (while it was still dark outside!) I started deconstructing the D-I-Y ornament wreath I made last year (my first ever project and quite possibly my last) and using those medium size gold and silver ornaments to begin the tedious process of filling in the holes in my tree, starting from way inside around the "trunk" of the tree and working outward.  Some of those ornaments already placed show up in the photograph above.




Those colored ornaments on my coffee table used to be at the very "top" of my Christmas ornament wreath, because despite using two boxes of gold and one box of silver ornaments from the dollar store I still didn't have enough to quite finish the wreath!  Now I know why so many instructions I'd read on the internet said to use a hot glue gun to glue those ornaments together; as it was, with no hot glue gun in the house, those ornaments kept sliding down further and further on the metal hanger, creating this big puffy FAT wreath with hardly any empty circle space in the center, LOL!  But I was that proud of it anyway, I hung it up.  Here is a not very good photo of it from last year:




I tried to hide the red and green ornaments added to "flesh out" this overweight monstrosity at the top by adding my version of an "elaborate and elegant" bow made out of French ribbon.  Epic Fail!  Then for the heck of it I threw some gold bead garland around it in no discernable pattern.  Guess I've got a thing about gold bead garland and hot messes...

Well, back to work here.  After I use up the ornmanents on my wreath and give the hanger the proper recycling it deserves, I'm going to hike to the Pick 'n Save for groceries and AA batteries and then I'm going to haul down all the boxes of ornaments, decorations and the hanger filled with gold bead garland downstairs and spend hours doing the Decorating the Tree Dance.  About that garland -- it lives in one of the closets upstairs; hooking it on a metal hanger with ornament hangers wrapped around the end beads keeps it nice and neat, not at all like my necklaces in my jewelry box that are forever tangling up with each other!

Oh - a couple pics of the sunlight streaming in through the front window earlier -- I wish I could capture just how pretty it was:


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