Journey 287: Bits of Fall

Most of my day revolved around showing property and follow up work on the computer. In between shutting down the lap top and dinner, I had a burst of energy and creativity, and added a bit more fall décor to my home. Redoing the chippy entry table was quick and fun and satisfied my urge to create. 


I loved this little project for three reasons:

1) Other than the purchased gourds, I created this table vignette using items I already had on hand. It’s great fun, for me, and expands my creativity, when I pull pieces that I own together in new ways. All my decor gets reused and combined in endless ways. 
2) The stack of mini pumpkin-like gourds in the metal cloche was a happy accident. When I created the vignette in the vintage wooden sieve, I had one white gourd left over. I popped it into the cloche, so it had a temporary home. A few days later, I stood studying that cloche and visualized a stack of orange and white gourds, rising in decreasing sizes within the wire cover. Would that work? Only one way to find out. I purchased more mini pumpkins, paying attention to the sizes of the gourds. My idea came together perfectly and became the focal point of the table top. 


3) On the bottom shelf is a favorite quote on a plate with autumnal colors. “A friends knows the song in your heart and can sing it back to you when you have forgotten the words.” I cherish my friendships. How amazing it is to share the journey with those who know my heart so well. And nestled there in the front, is a little marble owl from Italy. That treasure came to me from my Aunt Annie, who passed earlier this year. He seems right at home as part of my vignette. 

I enjoyed listening to Liz Gilbert speak Monday evening, on creative living. I’m reading her book on the subject, Big Magic. One of the things she shared was that it’s important for creativity to be able to trust us. She explained that creativity is set free in us by being creative, every day, in big or small ways, wonderfully or imperfectly, for a few minutes or for hours. By expressing our creativity, consistently, joyfully, doing what we love to do, we send out the message that creativity is fostered by us, appreciated, honored. I so agree.  As with so many things, the more we express and explore creativity, the more creativity flows to us. I love spending even a few minutes allowing my soul to hum with that vibrancy that being creative brings. And those days when I can spend hours in the creative process, then my soul opens wide and energy flows, and anything is possible. 

Journey 281: Bringing Fall Indoors

Today’s journey has been very similar to one of my Sunday self care days. I had an hour of physical therapy on my Darling left leg this morning, and she wasn’t at all sure that she liked it at first. Margit Schmid, of Massage & Posture Therapy, is wonderful, and although her initial attention to my leg was painful, as she worked to relax tense muscles and irritated nerves, her expertise soon brought a measure of relief and more mobility to my leg. I am grateful and I will see her again next week. 


I opted to work from my recliner this afternoon, taking care of business by phone and computer. Eventually I ended up in the garden, stretched out in my anti-gravity chair. What a gorgeous day! And how amazing, in October, to kick off my shoes and roll up my jeans. The air was warm and fragrant with the scent of basil, lemon balm, sage and jasmine. I am ever so blissful in this paradise. 
I felt inspired to gather freshly cut herbs and change over my vintage wooden sieve, from summer to fall. I’ve been slow to welcome fall, doing a little at a time, as Darling allows. Today she cooperated beautifully and I enjoyed creating a simple vignette that included mini pumpkins and a pitcher full of herbs. Scenting the air inside now is a mixture of basil, Russian sage, pineapple sage and lemon balm. I added a few stalks of ornamental grass as well. 

As I admired the finished vignette, I said aloud, “And that’s the limit of what I can do today.” Yes, my leg was tired and aching. However, I was aghast at what I had just said. I immediately spoke again, “Look at what I just accomplished! My leg did great!” It’s a small shift. But it is important to me to not see myself as limited. I am learning to care for myself in a greater way. I am listening to my body, in this case, my left leg, and appreciating the way she functions. I’ll do all I can to care for  my leg, and the rest of me, while I am enjoying life and the journey. And my body parts and I did create a lovely arrangement that brings the beauty and scents of my garden indoors and welcomes fall into my home. That truly is an accomplishment. 


Journey 257: First Fall Vignette 

Autumn is still almost a week away, officially. But it’s making an early appearance at my house, as I opened up my boxes of fall decor today. In keeping with my practice of allowing my journey to unfold, I changed over only one area today, from summer to fall, going where I felt drawn. The vintage suitcase in the bedroom was transformed this afternoon. 


I was excited about this fall vignette because of two vintage pieces that I can showcase. Last year I included Grandpa Moore’s porcelain doll for the first time. This little beauty is 115 years old! I’m very careful with her. She spends most of her days safely stored away. I like to use family pieces, though, and enjoy them when I can. Her green, yellow and orange dress makes her the perfect fall accessory. 

And new to the vignette this year is a vintage pocket watch, with a locomotive engraved on the back. This beautiful piece, in its little cloche, came home with me after Greg’s dad passed. Greg believes it belonged to one of his grandfathers, but isn’t sure if it was handed down from the maternal or paternal side of the family. This is one of those instances where I long to ask Dad Moore one more question. I love the way the pocket watch adds interest to the display and a reminder that time is precious. 


I lit tea light candles in the four candle holders tucked within the suitcase, and the tall jar candle with its bronze metal topper. It looks homey and beautifully fall like, this simple vignette. I love fall…the colors, the scents, the cooler temps, wearing jeans, hoodies and boots, sitting near crackling fires in the fire pit. The only thing about fall that I don’t like is the keen awareness that winter with its icy coldness and short gray days is coming  next. However, to soften the blow, fall also ushers in the holiday season, which I love and my family enjoys to the utmost. It’s a worthy trade off. 

Day 292: Fall Floral Arrangement

fall arrangement close up

What a beautiful, tranquil fall day. Each warm sunny day is a gift, this time of year. I had time this afternoon, in the midst of much needed housework and completing the fall decorating, to relax in the garden, savoring a cup of tea while soaking up gentle sunshine. The garden never fails to bring a smile to my face and joy to my heart. It also inspired my first today!

As I looked at the last offerings of the flowers and herbs still flourishing in the garden, I decided to gather blooms for a fall bouquet. I don’t cut flowers very often, preferring to enjoy them in their natural state. However, with the first hard frost, these plants will go dormant for the winter. I cut a selection of blooms and sprigs of herbs and brought them inside.

Using a white pitcher, I created a fun arrangement. I’m certainly not an expert on floral designs. I just went with what was appealing to me. The bouquet has a mix of plants, including yellow Blanket Flowers, white Snow Hill Salvia and the delicate looking Pink Fountain Gaura and among the herbal plants, I included Russian sage, lavender and three varieties of basil. I like the casual way the arrangement came together and I LOVE the way it smells! I included the flower filled pitcher in the fall vignette on the dining room table. Every time I walk by, the fragrance makes me smile.

I am really happy with the arrangement! At first glance, it resembles a spring bouquet. On closer inspection, it is apparent that these blooms are fading, albeit, they are still beautiful, still smell wonderful. I love the grace of that. What a wonderful reminder of this past season and the gift of beauty and joy that the garden has given to me.

Fall arrangement boquet

Day 286: Fall Vignette in Vintage Suitcase

vintage suitcase fall

Fall is well under way in Missouri. Today was a classic example of the season, with cool temps and an abundance of rain. Fall décor has been a bit slow to make an appearance at my house. This evening, I opened the storage boxes and began unpacking pumpkins and candle holders, wreaths and pillows. I had time to really focus on one project. I chose to transform the vintage suitcase from spring/summer to fall, creating this look for the first time with the suitcase and also displaying a central piece for the first time.

I have really enjoyed this old suitcase. Last year I brought it out from the closet where it had rested for years and dusted it off. I had such a great time creating a Christmas vignette in my grandfather’s old army truck that I wanted to keep going! The suitcase is small enough to fit atop my bedroom dresser and large enough to create fun vignettes within it. Tonight I packed away the summery items nestled inside and perused the fall decorations scattered around my dining room. I had already selected one piece that I for sure wanted to include in the suitcase.

Greg’s dad recently gave me a very old china doll, that had belonged to his father. Yes, Greg’s grandfather had a doll. And apparently, it meant a lot to him because he kept it, long after his other toys were gone. Before he passed away, he gave this treasure to Greg’s mom, who kept it safe from the grandchildren and on display in her bedroom. I stored the doll in the closet after I received her. I wanted to keep it safe. And, as anyone who knows me well knows, I am not overly fond of dolls. But this one is different. Her china head has yellow china hair. The eyes are painted on and there are no teeth showing! She has a soft body with china hands and feet. I estimate her age to be about 114 years old! I DO NOT want her to get broken. She’s been around far too long to have anything adverse happen to her. However, I also don’t want to keep her stored away in the closet, where she can’t be enjoyed and appreciated. Tonight, she became the centerpiece for the fall vignette in the suitcase.

vintage suitcase fall close up

The doll, who as far as I know, doesn’t have a name, is dressed appropriately in autumnal colors. I brought a vintage looking birdcage in from outdoors, added green and orange tea light holders with cute fall cutouts and a blown glass candle holder with fall leaves and berries inside surrounding a mercury votive holder. My golden dragonfly plate completes the lower section. A simple fall wreath adorns the top of the suitcase, along with a small plaid pillow with the word “Fall” on it. I love the way it looks! And I didn’t buy a thing. I especially enjoy creating vignettes with what I have on hand. It becomes a challenge….one I enjoy pulling together.

I’ll grab some spare moments over the next few days and pack away the last of summer and then welcome fall throughout the house. I love this time of year, actually, and the transition from fall right into the holidays. For tonight, there is a cozy vignette to greet me in the bedroom. I sure hope that doll likes it there!

vintage suitcase spring summer

Spring/Summer Vignette

vintage suitcase winter

Winter Vignette