When the leaves of the Japanese maple outside my kitchen window turn this color, I know the frosty fall nights have arrived. I love the feeling of the crispy air and the colors, and although this year fall has been slow in coming, and leaf color has been predicted to be less than ideal due to the drought, Mother Nature has started the transformation. And fall means it’s also time for my annual pilgrimage to Yankee Candle‘s flagship store in Deerfield, Massachusetts.
If you’ve never been to one of the two flagship stores, you are missing something amazing. I will take you to one on another day.
They call themselves “the world’s best Christmas shop” and I always find plenty of ornaments to add to my collection. I need them for things like hanging in my windows as you saw in my Resolutions and Confessions post a few years ago.
And speaking of pumpkins, the New York Botanical Garden is having its annual pumpkin and scarecrow exhibit. I always like to think of jack-o-lanterns with happy faces, like this one.
There were plenty of smiling pumpkins in the children’s garden.
But the fields were filled with these creatures coming over hilltops …
and surprising us at every turn through the woods.
The exhibit is lit at night, and must be terrifying!
I’ll only show you the least scary scarecrow. The crows don’t seem to be worried.
I prefer my scarecrows to be smiling, too. He is one of my favorites and is on my kitchen table right now. And since I haven’t seen any crows around I think he is more effective than the one above!
Fall here means it’s time to plant bulbs. I’m trying Colorblends this year. This crate of 310 bulbs arrived a few days ago. That is a huge amount of bulbs, and I wish I had my camera handy when Mr. Fun saw it. I’ll give you a peek inside it next week.
Some of the crocus bulbs (croci??) will go into the fairy house area. Right now the inhabitants are still enjoying these pretty impatients, and I can’t bear to pull them up.
As you can see, the weeping maple is still green, but any day now it will turn into this:
or even this:
When it’s this color the fairy people only need to add a little “pumpkin” berry to the front porch.
Last year it looked like this.
The fairies who were occupying it were into fall decor and decked out the front yard with a river stone, moss, a pine cone, some chestnuts (which always fall on our cars in the driveway) and some sedum as hedges.
In addition to the usual fall chores of bulb planting, leaf peeping, and checking up on the fairies, it’s time to start feeding the
squirrels birds. Last year I filled my bunny’s dish (and the bird feeders!) almost everyday, and apparently this squirrel remembers because he has been investigating to see if those seeds have magically appeared!
Although I love all the colors and changes of fall, the thing I love most is all the family birthdays. Charlotte, Will and now our son-in-law Chris are all September and October babies, so we’ve been going back and forth to Boston to bring presents and cakes and to sing and blow out candles. Sunday it was Will’s turn, and we stopped to see George’s monument in Dorchester Heights. It was the first day of the fall color, and the sky was perfect fall blue and white.
~~ and now for me ~~
It recently came to my attention (actually one day a few months ago it hit me like a rock ~~ truly it felt like someone had slammed me with a huge boulder) that before October closes I will no longer be able to say that I’m fifty-something. My age has never really been an issue and usually I don’t even know which year I’m in until I go back and do the math, but this time it has caused a tremendous amount of soul-searching. Why, I don’t know! Maybe because I have always been so busy and haven’t had time to even think about what will be next, but all that is changing soon, with Mr. Fun’s retirement looming and another move for us, but WHERE? No job or school to make the decision for us! I have decided to embrace the opportunity and focus more on the continuing evolution of me! I haven’t set a new table for you and me to enjoy this year so I’ll share photos of this one from the days when I first met you all.
And since I love wrapping and giving presents,
I’m giving away something for one of my blog friends. A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of hearing Frances Schultz speak about her book The Bee Cottage Story. We chatted for awhile, about life and change.
And I have a signed copy for one of you.
I’ll also find the perfect ornament for the winner, which I will chose after the random number generator does its thing.
Just tell me something ~~ anything ~~ how you like your pumpkins or scarecrows, or what you do for your birthdays, or what you think about changing decades, or whether you have read the book or like ornaments or plant bulbs, or anything else you wish to mention! I’m always available for chatting (can you tell?)