Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Change of Season

Halloween is gone.... kind of.  It has moved from places of honor on chairs and ledges and door knobs to a pile on the kitchen table to a brand new Crate and Barrel box.  The box remains unsealed.  There are always outliers, figurines hiding on bookshelves, candle holders near the courtyard containers, a ceramic pumpkin fallen behind a vase. 

One sure way to make hidden decorations appear is to seal the storage box.  I'm not making that mistake again this year.  This year, I am going to repurpose the three, beautiful, white, unblemished shipping boxes which contained outdoor, solar powered, hanging globe lights.  Halloween is being wrapped in brand new bubble wrap (which C&B tells me can be punctured and recycled ... and I want to meet the woman who has time to poke holes in three boxes of bubble wrap) which is an extraordinarily pleasurable experience.

I'm cheap.  Others may say frugal or conservative or a recycling fiend, but the bottom line is that I cannot bear to throw out that which could be used to cushion items in storage.  I have been unwrapping and refolding bubble wrap for decades.  It shows.  The difference between brand new materials and those which have been doing their duty since Chicago in the 1970's is stark.  The new stuff is thicker, requires fewer layers, and feels absolutely wonderful to the touch.

Still, I found use for the flattened pieces, covering open baskets containing tiny toys, wrapping candles and batteries in small, I-hope-I-don't-lose-them-in-the-big-box balls of plastic.  As I've aged, I've learned to resist the urge to squish the small sections of air.... almost always. 

Thanksgiving was living in two small boxes this year.  2014 will find it a new home in the second C&B box.  Halloween and Thanksgiving overlap one another; the glass pumpkin is too elegant to be relegated to the October-is-Over box; I want it out for November, too.  It's a harvest fruit, after all.  I think I will try to find some other, glass, gourd-like objets to fill out the display.

JannyLou's holiday collection was the subject of a Fast Eddie soliloquy last weekend. She loves these things.... she has collections for every holiday.... I've never seen anyone who loves this as much as she does.  TBG sat silently, smiling inwardly.  He knows that his wife could give her a run for her money.  Her collection is more elegant, leaning to the glass and silver end of the spectrum.  I focused on more kid-friendly items; things that can be organized by 9 and 11 year olds... and one not-too-careful 62 year old...  without fear of breakage. 

Breakage is a fungible term when it comes to my holiday decorations.  There are certain things that were never discarded.  The turkey candle with the broken feathers... the haunted house with the twisted wire fence.... the Cuters' elementary school drawings ... they all made the cut until now.  With a new little human in the family, I have decided to make room for her creations by tossing those of her mother and uncle.  Does that seem fair?  I have no problem with it.  They made me smile, reminded me of days gone by, but they were never put out in prominent display. 

Now, my new white boxes contain only unbroken items.  It's a little lonesome, but a lot neater and lighter. 

IKEA was my source for 200 tea lights last December; I have 150 of them left in a box.  Some of the candelabras would look prettier with votives, but the wax dripping all over the windowsills and the mantle and the end table makes the beauty just another chore in the morning.  The tea lights are encased in inexpensive metal which can be recycled after they contain the droplets.  I'm willing to sacrifice some bit of pretty for ease. 

Is that a sign of age or intelligence... or both?

The stores are All Christmas All The Time, and the red and white and green still feel awkward and out of sync.  It's November.  It's Fall.  It's leaves turning colors and sweaters-not-parkas.  Santa will be here in due time.  For now, I'm having fun looking at my stuffed turkeys and wondering if it's not altogether creepy to admire their fabric selves as I drool, thinking about eating their living incarnations.

This is the kind of conversation which would keep G'ma going for hours.  I'm going to take a moment and remember her... give thanks for her.... laugh with her memory... and enjoy what this month has to bring.


  1. I was at Michael's yesterday and bought a couple of fall items for a luncheon I am giving next week. Upon checking out I found that they were marked down 75 percent. Should have bought more!

    1. Do you know that Tuesday is a discount day for crafters of a certain age?


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