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Halloween Decorations

This post is a little late, but you know, that’s me. ­čÖé We managed to start decorating a little earlier this year than last year,┬á and we managed to add a few more decorations this year. Mostly we decided that our front walk is a bit dark, so we found some light-up decorations to spice things up. We put up some orange and purple “xmas lights” lights over the garage:

They were only up for for less than a week, but since we left up the gutter hooks from last xmas, they were very quick to put up and take down. And it gave Dave and excuse to see how the solar panels are doing.

Our other illuminating addition was a series of cheap plastic light-up pumpkin heads on stakes:

They served their purpose admirably. And that reminds me! I transplanted the allysum and chrysanthemums to border the front walk here. The chrysanthemums ┬áhad already been transplanted earlier this year in around the lavender, but the lavender suddenly decided to have a growth spurt so things were looking crowded. They’re still going strong, though they are overdue for some deadheading. Hurray for “annuals” when it never freezes. ­čÖé Here’s the front walk from the other end:

That one allysum in the front looks like it won’t survive the transplant. And I need to sweep the walkway. Sigh. But everything was looking pretty halloweeny, huh? Here’s a closer view of the front patio:

It looks more or less like last year, though we did upgrade the ghosts from the “rags and sharpie” things we had before:

And we did add a last-minute giant spider web to go with our giant spider:

I wish I could say I was talented enough to tie together a spiderweb out of yarn, but I found it in the clearance section already pre-tied. Much easier.

Anyway, we had a good halloween and we have some leftover candy to enjoy, so we’re all happy here.


Getting rid of the beige

When we first moved in, almost the entire house was painted beige. The walls (except for the bathrooms), the doors, the door trim, all beige. But not the floorboards or the windowsills. Go figure. Of course we like the walls a lot more now that they are nice and green. (We like the walls that are brown and purplish-grey too.) But our nicely painted walls just make the beige doors and trim look even more dingy and blah.

The front door in particular has been especially beige-looking ever since we hung the white curtains. I didn’t take a fresh picture with the curtains in view, but here’s one from when we first hung the curtains. The front door is to the far right.

Anyway, I hadn’t really been feeling inspired the paint, but I guess a few weeks with the curtains pushed me over the edge. The beige front door had to go. Here’s the before. Don’t mind the paper/tape protecting the hardware…

Here’s how it looked after I started painting the trim on top. Seeing the beige with the white is such a contrast…

And here’s the finished product! Note how it actually matches the floorboards now…

Here’s a shot with the curtains in view. Sorry about the camera flash, it really isn’t all that shiny-looking in person…

Unfortunately there are another six doors, with trim, that are still very, very beige. And I need to paint BOTH sides of those doors… at least I can take them off of their hinges to paint. There are also two wall heaters that are beige. Eventually I’ll get around to figuring out if there is any way to paint them too…

New Outdoor Lighting

Yay! Our old front door light was a perfectly functional but seriously lame looking. Happily for me, we had a solid, non-aesthetic reason for wanting to change it out asap: we wanted a motion-sensor light at our front door. The position of our garage and the location of the house means our front porch is hidden from most of our court, and at night it’s really dark even with the living room light on.

We wanted a oil-rubbed bronze look to go with our recently replaced door knob and deadbolt. I also wanted seeded or frosted glass so we wouldn’t just be looking at an unobstructed view of the bulb inside the fixture. PLUS, we aren’t wild about ornate curlicues, so I was hoping for something with clean lines without being too plain and utilitarian. Lucky for us, pretty much the least expensive motion-sensing light in the hardware store came pretty darn close to meeting all of our criteria. Here’s the before:

And the after:

Please excuse the sad stated of the fuschia. I thought I had managed to kill it off completely, but it finally started sprouting leaves and even a few flowers, so I’m pretty happy.