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November 2010

October 2010

Pumpkins n' spiders n' ghouls, oh my!

I grew up sheltered by massive pine trees, which each year dropped blankets of golden needles across our yard.   I ran across them, enjoying the way they slipped beneath my feet ice-like and vaguely disorienting.  I bundled them and bound them with string, creating what in my mind looked like a cross between a haystack and the corn stalks people bought at Tuttle's Red Barn.  I'd place these bundles along the front of our porch and wonder why the rest of my family didn't see what I did in them. They usually only lasted a day or two before my brother decided they were fun to use for batting practice, but I continued to make them.

That urge to decorate the front of my home with some of autumn's beauty is still with me, all these years later.   After reading about Julie's decorating for fall in Under the Tulip Tree, I started to think about what I wanted to do this year, which lead me to notice the decorations around me on my daily walks.  Here are a few of my favorites. 

  Pumpkins lincoln rd 101810
This one strikes me as quintessential New England, from the shape of the house, to the simple elegance of the assorted pumpkins and mums. 

I wonder if anyone ever sits in that chair, or if it's just their for appearances.   Either way, it makes the doorway appear all the more inviting.

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I believe it's humanly impossible to look at these without smiling.  Each time I pass them I imagine the giggles and antics that went into decorating them.

IMG_3436 I know there are plenty of scarier ghosts available in stores, but I enjoy the variety you find in the homemade ones.  You can't see it in the photo, but the yard actually has a whole family of ghosties, each with a unique, child drawn face. 

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This ingenious witch sways in the breeze.  She has a tiki torch for a broom, and a delightfully bloated green face.  I'd love to take a closer look inside her robe to see how she's held together, but not knowing the people who live there, that could be a bit awkward. 


This simple, yet colorful, display ended up inspiring my own decorating.  After years of wanting, but not buying indian corn,  I "splurged".  I felt a little foolish when I realized three ears of corn, that I would enjoy for at least two months,  cost less than a drink at Starbucks.  It made me wonder just how much I had thought it would cost.  It is just corn after all.  Then I remembered years of seeing it in the grocery store, asking my mother to buy some and being told "No, it's too expensive".  It probably was, for a single mom raising two children.    Or maybe she just didn't want to get any and it was an easy excuse.  Either way, remembering that makes me enjoy the little bundle on my door all the more.


Post Script - you may have noticed I have a preference for homemade decorations.  If you feel the same way, a pattern for crochet indian corn can be found at Alicia Kachmar's website


Dressing the Porch for Fall

Why is it so much fun to decorate the porch? I have no idea. But I love it. And it never really feels like a new season has arrived until the porch has been readied for it, ya know? Fall is so easy, too. There are only a handful of flowers to choose from—mums, pansies, or kale—and when you mix them with some perky pumpkins, you're pretty much good to go.


I saw Julie's post about decorating her porch for fall and had a "yeah" moment. Not quite a eureka moment mind you, but a reminder from a kindred spirit of something I'd forgotten about myself.

I'll be posting my own take on fall outdoor decorations shortly (translation, I've taken way too many photos and must edit). In the mean time, take a look at Julie's blog Under the Tulip Tree for creative inspiration, appreciation of the wonderful ordinariness of life, and a couple of the cutest kids ever.


If you're driving at the posted speed limit down route 126 in Lincoln, you're going to miss it.  No, not the classic image of Walden Pond ringed by trees ablaze in autumn's finest hues.  The slower than usual speed at which people seem to take the crosswalk from the parking lot to Walden's beach, ensures that you'll have time to enjoy the view.  It's particularly spectacular as the sun starts to set over the water. 

The image that you'll miss is much more subtle.  In fact, on foot I had to walk back and take a second look to see if my mind was playing tricks on my eyes. 

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Do you see it? 

Pretty funny in an apt sort of way.   Both crosswalks near St. Anne's-in-the-Fields' Episcopal church have been decorated in the same way.  I love that the person took the time to create little waves instead of just using a straight piece of duct tape.

Not that I'm a proponent of making changes to public signage, but I do have a couple other favorites.  They aren't quite as clever, but they make me smile when I see them and that's worth something.

  • For miles and miles of route 93 north, every deer crossing sign has had a drop of red paint added, making them Rudolph crossing signs.
  • I think it's been replaced now, but for a while there was a stop sign on the Minuteman Bike Path that had the word Voldemort (of Harry Potter fame) added to it.