Saturday, October 23

Easy jack-o'-lanterns and Halloween home decor

I've been searching the web for fall and Halloween decorating DIY projects and found so many clever ideas I had to share them with you. I wish I could do them all! 

Get artsy with these mini pumpkins. Carve shapes, expressions, whatever you like and light them up with tea lights.

Classic black and white displays give a modern touch to traditional design.

Here are some fun jack-o-lantern carvings.

The leaves left on the step above give a natural untouched, abandoned house look.

Be creative, make your own ghosts crafts from supplies around the house and hang them from light fixtures.

Cut out bats or other Halloween creatures to make a spooky display in your home.  Another idea I've seen is little mice cut outs all around and up a stairway.

The cobwebs below were made with a hot glue gun.

My personal favorite is this simple inexpensive idea...a fire pit filled with pumpkins and candles. If only I had a traditional fire pit!

Here is a simple yet fabulous outdoor display.

Lastly I will leave you with some Eco Friendly Halloween Tips!

Organize a costume swap with friends.

• Use your pumpkin to its fullest potential: roast the seeds, place a candle in it for your home, then make into a pie and compost what's left.

Have kids walk from house to house instead of driving them. If you do have to drive, be idle free and turn off your vehicle while you wait.

• Use a re-usable bag for collecting treats in, tote bags, or the classic pillowcase works well for trick-or-treating.

Don't buy food treats made with palm oil (Palm oil plantations contribute to rain forest destruction).

• Choose a candle made with 100 per cent beeswax or soy candles as paraffin candles are petroleum based and burn less cleanly.

If you must use lights, decorate with LED lights. They last as much as 133 times longer than incandescent and cost 80 per cent less to use.

• When purchasing Halloween decor try to ensure items are durable and will last for years of use.

Trick or Treat!!!

*Above images are from and Michael Graydon photography

Thursday, October 14

Gardening in a Raised Bed

Near my home there is a hill that I take my dogs to every morning for a run. And in one section at the hill there is a bunch of raised garden beds, all of which people rent to grow their own vegetables. I think those in particular are intended for those without a yard.  I also read about people renting out plots in their yards for others to grow vegetables...or maybe you can do a trade off...fresh produce for space! Anyways I decided that making a raised bed is going to 'A' keep curious noses out of my garden and 'B' make gardening easier. 

Good thing I kept my left over cedar scraps from the deck project in the spring. I built a basic bed, just went at it with a hand saw, a drill and my helpful partner Berlin...who actually swayed a confused bumble bee my way which stung the back of my leg :) :)

Right before the bee sting (which by the way is over rated)

After the harvest...

This week I harvested the last of my tomatoes, parsley and sweet potatoes...which by the way were so tiny almost not worth eating :(   I've experimented with a few vegetables and now have a better idea of what I will start in the spring.  I've pulled out the remainder of the crops and layed down a liner.  I will add compost matter and leaves late in the fall.  Then come spring it will be filled with organic soil.  The cedar is excellent for this project as its rot-resistant and natural.


Goodbye lil' garden, I’ll miss the daily fresh produce pickings...but thanks to you my freezer is stocked for the winter months to come :)

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