I'm taking a short break from continuing my current "The Look for Less" series today, as something mysterious happened to me overnight Thursday and I have to tell you about it. It seems, somehow, that the Spirit of the Fall has fallen (har :)) upon me because I woke up Friday morning and all I could think about was decorating my mantle/mantel for autumn! That's right, you read it correctly. After weeks of ignoring the seductive efforts on all the blogs I visit to lure me into saying goodbye to summer and hello to autumn, I said nope, nope, and nope, and steadfastly ignored all attempts to convert me to the Autumn Leaves Mindset. But Friday morning, it was like "I really need to get to the Family Dollar this weekend and see what they've got for fall."
Now that is STRANGE, people, me ever wanting to go to the Family Dollar, for one thing. I tried to shake the feelings off, but they stuck with me all day despite working through yet another day from Hell at the office (my boss is going to kill me from exhaustion and stress, I swear). But they did not go away. On the bus ride home Friday evening, I had to talk myself out of hiking from my regular stop to the Family Dollar and then home, adding an extra mile to my usual walk. I was drained from working and knew it just wasn't wise to push myself any further.
But I got up bright and early this morning. It was beautiful outside. Bright blue skies and scudding fluffy clouds of white and varying shades of grey, lots of sunshine, and a brisk breeze out of the northwest (FINALLY) bringing cool temperatures and dry air! Hooray! The soccer kid teams were soon out on the other side of the road on a vast playing area not far from my house and their cheers and yells were carried clearly on the wind. They always make me smile.
I set out for the Family Dollar about 10:15 and by the time I lingered there, deciding over this and that, putting things into my basket and then taking them out and hemming and hawing (the clerk probably thought I was a nut case) , then stopped at the Pick 'n Save down the road, and then home, I'd done a near three-mile circuit and it had clouded over. No more sunshine today, it seems. I arrived back home right around noon.
I'm still feeling that autumnal thing despite the disappearance of the sun so I guess it's not going to go away. Tonight I'll start redoing my mantle/mantel for autumn. I don't have a clear idea of what I want to do, but I will probably incorporate most or all of the items that I used in my first ever fall mantel/mantle last year. You've probably guessed by now that the photo above is my haul from the Family Dollar. Here's another pic:
What I bought:
One medium/large ceramic pumpkin cookie or candy jar: $5
One ceramic autumn maple leaf dish: $2
Three floral piks: $2 each
Ceramic pumpkin salt and pepper shakers (so cute): $2
Paper mache' pumpkin with floral pik on top: $2
Two glittery pumpkins: $2 each
One 16 ft. string of foil mini autumn leaves: $1
Total: $22 plus tax
Yeah, went a little nuts at the Family Dollar (they should call it Family Dollars) -- and put some things back only because I knew I was going to stop at the supermarket and haul at least one bag of wine and groceries home! I may go back for a set of squirrel salt and pepper shakers (so darn cute!) You know I've got a thing for squirrels :)
I clipped some grape vines out back, stripped off the leaves and formed a rough wreath. My wreaths never turn out round; maybe because I don't wire the vines together? I just interweave the vines and they stick out here and there, refuse to curve in other places where they should curve, etc. etc. So I always have cockeyed wreaths hanging around the deck, but this year I didn't even make one! Just a little while ago I dashed outside and made my very first (maybe my last one) of the season. Not sure I'll use it, it's pretty skimpy and sickly looking... I'll be back tomorrow (I think) with a finished mantel/mantle. Just in time for the Autumnal Equinox.
December 4, 2016: Hola everyone! Winter has arrived in Milwaukee and there are snow flurries today. Despite several hard freezes remarkably my "spikes" in two of my patio planters have absolutely refused to die. The rosemary and thyme plants I nursed inside the house through last winter spent the summer in their pot outside next to the side stoop off the driveway, where they get plenty of sunshine all day long. I transplanted them into a cozy sheltered spot right next to the stoop in October and they are still green and growing, too! With the delay in getting the drywall patching done in the relatively minor "reconstruction" work I had done in my kitchen, I am way behind my time in getting the house decorated. But yesterday I got my wreath decked out with extra lights and dressed the front door of the house, and my battery-operated traditional candles were put up on the window sills all around the house Friday evening. It becomes a ritual to go around at dusk and turn the tops to the right to turn the candles "on" and at bedtime to go around and turn the tops to the left to turn the candles "off." Today I put some "glittery" throw pillow covers purchased new last month from H&M on three of my sofa pillows to glam things up a bit in the living room and add some sparkle. Later on, after I sufficiently fuel myself up with wine and snacks and probably to distract myself while I listen to the Packers game on the radio, I will huff and puff and pull my artificial tree up from storage in the basement. I will decorate it simply this year. Every year I say that, and every year I end up throwing just about everything except the kitchen sink on the tree. I am very proud of myself this year, though. I did not buy a single new ornament or Christmas doo-dad for the house (throw pillow covers don't count!!!) Happy Holidays to all, with hope and fervent prayers for 2017. I've a feeling we're all going to need a lot of help from Goddess in the coming year. Jan