The days and weeks after Halloween… pumpkins remain!

We all had tons of fun carving pumpkins with our family and friends and then of course roasting the seeds, but now Halloween has come and gone and we are left with a giant “squash” on our front porch!  Not to worry my dear friends.  There are tons of options available to put your amazing pumpkin to good use following such a fun and frightful eve.  Read through the options below and see which best fits your family and home and then get a little create.  This is a great way to help the Halloween festivities fade into fall and then to Thanksgiving.  And as always, have a happy day!

  1. Feed the birds – Remove the topper of your pumpkin and fill it with a great blend of bird seed. It can be store bought or you can make your own.  Set the pumpkin in the yard away from your house (buried a bit into the ground for stability) and watch the birds enjoy their treat.  NOTE: The pumpkin will eventually turn to fertilizer for the area you place it in so if you do not want the area to absorb the pumpkin.
  2. Fertilize your garden – This brings us to returning the pumpkin back to the ground. Make great use of it by making an all-natural fertilizer out of it.  When your pumpkin begins to look soft and a bit on the rotten side, it’s time to smash it (or chop it) and mix it into small pieces for your garden.  NOTE: before you do this make sure there are NO seeds inside your pumpkin are you will have pumpkins growing in your garden as well by next year.  Also, be sure to remove any melted candle wax as this will not biodegrade and is not healthy for your garden.
  3. Plant some flowers – This is fun way to move your pumpkin to your garden and bring Halloween to your patio (and still have an opportunity to pack up the spooky décor). Simply clean out the inside of the pumpkin and plant some flowers inside. Bury the pumpkin with only about an inch or two of the top showing through to bring the orange color to your garden area.  The pumpkin with break down in the soil and naturally fertilizer your garden and your flowers should love it!  NOTE:  Don’t forget to remove the candle wax and any seeds for fear of adding a new pumpkin sprout to your pretty garden.
  4. Create Potpourri – This is a fun idea if you have just recently carved your pumpkin and are not ready to let it go to waste. Also, if you have smaller pumpkins, this is a great way to add décor to your dinner table and a great conversation piece!  (a fun DIY).  Lightly dust the inside of your pumpkin with cinnamon and poke cloves and star anise into the inside (the fleshy part).  Light a candle and a wonderful autumn scent will fill the room.

Fall is here, time to set the mood

Fall is here and we all get busy around the holidays with work, kids school activities, family activities and it can sometime be hard to get into the holiday spirit or maybe we are in a pinch for a quick last minute fall gift for a party or just a thank you.  Potpourri is always a great go-to for me and also a great way to get your own home into the holiday spirit.  Here are a few recipes for your home.  Check out my Facebook page and Instagram for some great DIY Potpourri projects and gift ideas.

It’s important to remember, there is no right or wrong combination of store bought (or home grown) fruits and spices for the fall to make your personal potpourri.  Some staples are Cinnamon, cloves, star anise, oranges and apples.  Oranges and lemons are great as well.  Here you will find two separate recipes for potpourri.

For an active potpourri (one that you will cook on your stove and need to either continuously add water too or only use for a portion of time) use the following recipe:

In a medium stove top pot, add three cups of water and turn on medium heat. Add two cinnamon sticks, half of an orange, half of a lemon, and 1 tablespoon cloves.  Once the mixture reaches a good temperature, turn to low and let this mixture sit on your stove uncovered.  The potpourri will steep for some time sending a lovely scent throughout your home.  Be sure to check the pot from time to time as the water will evaporate and you will either need to add more or remove the pot from the heat when you are thru with you potpourri for the day.

For a dry potpourri, (one that can be set out in a decorative bowl) use the following recipe:

With cinnamon, cloves, star anise, orange and apples as your ingredients you will want to start by slicing the apples and oranges thin.  Spread them onto a cookie sheet in a single layer and bake them at 250 degrees to dry them out.  Remove from the oven and let cool, add the remaining spices and allow them to marinate together in a decorative jar or bowl.  NOTE: This particular version makes for a great gift and it is always nice to add in the recipe on a nicely printed card so others can do the same.

Enjoy your holiday season and as always remember to Have a Happy Day!

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