From Me to You

For those of us who experienced the last unprecedented heat wave last month, the most recent breezy days have been a blessing.

If you have been to the markets, you will see that Halloween pumpkins have been on sale. Also, the wonderful yellow, purple, and orange chrysanthemums are on display in full bloom, too.

It will only be a short time until winter holiday decorations will be beckoning to us. Since our weather is becoming more unpredictable, it is often disconcerting to see advertisements for long- sleeved sweaters and wool pants and scarves when we are wearing shorts and T-shirts.

Years ago, the big department stores used to send out catalogues. I think Neiman Marcus may still do one. Their catalogue offers unusual and exceptionally expensive gifts for the person who does have everything. But, I always remember a May Co. catalogue whose cover showed Santa Claus floating in a swimming pool as if he didn’t have a care in the world. How did they know that could be feasible in the future?

Since Halloween is one of our most popular holidays, there will always be ideas about celebrating and what to do with your precious pumpkin afterwards.

Family Features suggest recycling your pumpkin. You can bake the seeds for yourself or share them with local wildlife. Try making slime that is perfect for Halloween pranks.

Pumpkins generate organic waste, so adding them to a compost bin (or burying them) can be quite beneficial for the soil. Either option returns organic matter to the Earth, rather than heaping it into a landfill where it’s just adding to accumulating food waste. Or, if you save the pieces carved from your jack-o’-lanterns, you can use a toothpick to secure them in place. Then, you’ll be left with a vessel that’s perfect for using as a seasonal planter. Add some mums or other autumn blooms and enjoy them throughout the fall.

There are actually some lovely autumn leaves falling from Santa Monica trees. Check out Montana Avenue sidewalks. Your children can make placemats by cutting a piece of poster board about 18”x13.” Collect some colorful leaves and place them on top of the poster board. Put a piece of clear Contact paper over the leaves to keep them in place. Leave about 1/2” contact paper over the edges of the poster board and fold that over when you have the leaves in place.

Enjoy the change in seasons.

By Diane Margolin

Publisher, The Santa Monica Star

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