Monday, October 31, 2011


Welcome once again to my versatile front porch table. This time it's turned upside down, its standard position for holding winter fire wood, but holding bales of pine straw instead. To make better use of funds, I've opted for pine straw instead of hay and will use it later to protect bedding plants from the winter's cold. And, I'm hoping for double duty from the planters as well, using Crotons for color instead of Mums. I'll plant them later to replace things lost to this summer's drought.
The grand-babies got a kick out of the "Candy Corn" painted pumpkins though I must give credit for the idea to some fabulous magazine. I would love to mention which one but I must have flipped through dozens while at Mayo last week and sadly don't remember.
Since most of the pumpkins will be cooked and processed for Holiday pies, my only real splurge was the crow and I just couldn't resist. In another setting, he might look a bit sinister but with all the squirrels and birds on, around and thourgh my yard and porch, he seems to be just another visitor and I like him. I'll turn the Jack-o-lantern face around after Halloween and he can stay in place as a decorative vase through Thanksgiving.
My sister told me about creating the dolls with a bit of candy and hot glue. What a great, cost-saving surprise to find the combination of lollypops, Dots and Tootsie Rolls all in a single variety pack.
After the pumpkin carving and porch decorating, the grand-babies and I made "Pepitas" - roasted pumpkin seeds. Placing the pumpkin "goo" and seeds in a bowl of cold water, tends to do most of the separating for you. The seeds let go and float and can be easily scooped from the surface.
Drain. Toss in a plastic bag with oil and salt. Drain again and bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. Try adding some Cayenne or Cajun Spice Mix if you want a little zing. Fresh, crunchy, and FREE greatness. Yummm.