I really enjoy the weather and the changes of the light this time of year. It is the nesting instinct I think. It’s time to think about getting cozy, snuggle up under the blanket with a cup of hot tea, make casseroles and soups and going home. I have more decorations for Fall than any other season, well, except Christmas, of course. I so enjoy those bright oranges, yellows and reds in the bright sunshine the best. Krista lived in PA for a while and the Fall colors there amazed me. They actually made me cry the first morning she took me out for a view. It doesn’t take much to stir up my emotions, but those colors were beautiful and that Fall was very special to me. Here in West Texas we have to create our own color spots because we certainly don’t have the climate or the trees to recreate that blaze of color. We can travel to nearby New Mexico and see some aspens that are brilliant yellow. But once you’ve seen the leaves turning it sort of gets in your blood. You want more!
I bought this little set years ago from some catalog that was going around at work. The pieces (head with hat and sign with gloves for hands) are wooden and have dowels to insert into a real pumpkin and made this little “squatty-body” guy. I had a brilliant idea this year. Why not buy one of those beautiful artificial pumpkins and have this to use forever! I’m a little slow, but when the creative juices get flowing I feel very clever! And it will last forever! I added a few fall leaves with a glue gun and put him in a large flower pot. Now isn’t that clever and cute?
I’ve added a short strand of colorful artificial leaves to my ristra I made last year and it has a bright little splash of color. Click here to learn the basics of the ristra.
I had it hanging on a hanger with a plastic bag covering it since last Fall. The colorful leaves added a real bright spot and the bag keeps it dust-free. My garage has a wall of wreaths. They are all hanging with plastic bags over them and I just switch them out for the seasons. Maddie gets concerned when Lita’s house isn’t decorated with a wreath. Not to worry, I have plenty!
These two wreaths have been in use for about 15 years. The one on the red door hasn’t had anything added to it in several years. Next year it will get a new bow, I think. It is actually a small wreath (center) that I added it to a larger grape vine wreath and added the swag of leaves around the larger wreath and the bow on top.
I totally refreshed the straw wreath on the outside door this year. I made new bows and fresh swags of leaves and flowers to brighten it up. It’s hard to see, but on the right hand side is one of my favorite finds. She is a corn husk angel with a basket of bright colored fruit. She has faded over the years, but she is always there each Fall when I put out this wreath.
I made this pumpkin floral arrangement last year. It was so quick and easy to pull off the shelf of the closet and put it out on the table. Instant Fall in my kitchen! Click here for directions.
Of course with the Fall comes Pumpkin Bread. It really says “Fall is here” to me. This is the one recipe of my Grandmother’s I can make that tastes just like hers. I’ve made it for years and shared this recipe with my church for our cookbook. I make it for friends and neighbors and my family. It is a welcoming smell in any kitchen. Plain, unadorned Pumpkin Bread.
I made this ceramic bread basket years ago at a shop near my home. I sort of became the neighborhood ceramic lady for a while. I still enjoy this piece.
In case you can’t tell, I like to keep things and reuse them. Memories, you know….. that’s what it’s all about.
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- 4 large eggs, well beaten – room temperature
- 1 small can pumpkin puree (not pie mix)
- 1-¼ cups vegetable oil
Mix dry ingredients and make a well in the center. Add pumpkin, eggs, and oil and blend until well moistened.
Bake in well-greased loaf pans for 1 hour at 350° or until skewer inserted in middle comes out clean.
Remove from the oven onto wire racks to cool for 10 minutes. Then put on sheets of foil and wrap tightly while still warm. Leave out to cool completely. This helps the bread become very moist. Resist eating for at least 24 hours.
If using small loaf pans, adjust the baking time slightly. You can also make muffins with this recipe. I make the mini muffins. Baking time is 20-25 minutes.
Store in airtight containers for storage. These freeze well.
My favorite Fall decoration is this little angel. She’s made out of fabric with a grapevine halo and she holds a cornucopia. Her wings are leaf-shaped and her dress is a Fall plaid. (My mother would love her dress.) She sits on anything I can find to make her the centerpiece of my Fall porch decorations.
Leaves are falling
Frost is near
Autumn’s angels gather here.