17 October 2013

Fake Fall

Well friends, we are now well into autumn here in Southern California.  I am a native of this region,  however I did live in the North West for a brief period.  So I can say with some authority that I have seen a "real" autumn thus living here in So Cal, I must now refer to our autumn as, "fake fall".  No degradation intended.  I happen to be a big fan.

Although we live in a semi-arid climate, around here, we like to artificially change our seasons.  It is easy really.  A trip to the local craft store and a bit of scavenging and voila!  Colorful dried leaves, soft candle light, pumpkins (adorned with a smidgen of raffia) go a long way to create that mid season weather we crave.  If I open all my windows, I can even light my gas fire and the ambience is enhanced.  One can almost imagine living on the East Coast with the flames licking the fire screen and (sorta) brisk air wafting in on the breeze.

 I always decorate with a new Fall wreath.  Of course the starfish and shells must stay, just so I don't look too fake, recreating fall in a Southern California beach town.

During the summer time, the hooks on the right contain a beach bag, a sun hat and a light, airy, summer scarf.  (For those cold evenings when it gets below 70 degrees.)

When I decorate for fake fall, I exchange all of those summer trinkets with what I imagine to be fall accessories.  A warm fall-toned scarf or two.  An umbrella of course.  Even though with 146 days of full sunshine, we do have 117 that are partly cloudy.  Now you see why I try to spend at least a month in Ireland per year.  A girl has to watch out for the moisture in her skin, and a little rainy good luck is always in order.  Fake fall leaves fully adorned with glue gunned acorns, adds an autumn touch to the  driftwood mirror.  I think the driftwood mirror has a bit of an earthy fall feeling anyway.  Yeah?

I change all my annual flowers to yellows and oranges.  (These are actually real.)  A few reds are tucked in so that when I decorate for fake winter they actually fade smoothly into the Christmas season.  Notice my three tiered pumpkins.  Again, the craft store - but I decorated them myself by inserting a pole through the three, wrapping burlap around the base and stringing fake fall leaves around the whole thing.  I think fall is in the air!

You may notice that the dutch door is open a tad.  It's just too dam hot inside to keep it closed.

 I welcome you to fake fall in California where the Santa Ana's (easterly winds) are the most fall we ever feel because even thought they aren't crimson and yellow, we get a lot of leaves on the ground.  We get less than 12 inches of rain here per year, but rain doesn't always mean fall, right?

 You can always tell it's fall around our house because all the soaps change to Sweet Pumpkin. "Bath and Body Works" does a booming fall business in So Cal.

Of course I light Sweet Cinnamon Pumpkin candles for that just came in from a long, brisk, walk through the fields with the hunting dogs effect.  I'm telling you, I LOVE fall!

 Of course nothing says fall like Halloween!  You may notice that our stash is getting a little low already.  Why are you looking at me?

These are for the trick-or-treaters.  We don't get many, because we're about the only ones who decorate and turn on the lights in our neighborhood.  Some of our neighbors come over for chili and they bring all their candy too.  Then when all those cute little ones come a knocking in their Ninja Turtle, Justin Bieber, witch costumes, we share the loot and each kid gets a whole handful of baby packages containing their favorite (or is that my favorite) candy?  And we don't get our cottage egged for turning off the lights!

So - to sum it all up.  If you want real fall.  Don't come live in So Cal.  Especially at the beach.  Today, it's 78 degrees and sunny.  And that's h o t.  We don't usually get above 72 degrees in December more-less October.

Well, it's a nice day for a swim in the sea.  Not even wet suit weather yet.  I'll see ya all later when I come back to fake fall this afternoon, open my windows and turn my gas fireplace on.

No matter where you live, I hope you have a beautiful day!



10 October 2013

We Welcome With Love

We welcome with love, our
healthy, beautiful, sweet, baby girl

My baby girl had a baby girl yesterday.
Her 7th child.  We're still out numbered at 4 boys, 3 girls.  (But the girls are mighty!)
My daughter, she is a shining example of, The Culture of Life.

 Her stats.    Her middle name is Kathleen.  It's for Tara's younger sister Kathleen who will be Rebecca's godmother.  Wait.  7 babies and not one named for her Grammy.  Not even a middle name...
We'll think about that later.

 St Mary's Kindergarten class welcomes baby Rebecca!

Look how my daughter, my baby girl,  may first baby girl, beams.

There's lots of rejoicing going on around here.  Thanks for sharing with us St Mary Kindergarden.

Grandma Ger (Jason's mom) and I have taken over kid, house and hearth duties.  We drove back and forth in the rain (a California phenomena) yesterday, at least 3x, introducing the kids to their new baby.
Driving in the rain is unnatural for us Southern Californian's.  I got lost all 3 times.  Wait, maybe one of those times was when I lost my car.  There's a reason you are the Grammy and not the Mommy when you are as old as dirt! (Only myself Ger, you rock the socks off being a Grandma.) I'm just still tired from my own fearsome five.

Abigail Rose was first to meet Rebecca, since she's still at home.  Abby says it's okay that she's not the baby anymore because, now she's a BIG sister!  Now she doesn't wear diapers and she shares a room with her big sister Emma.

Abby was a little overwhelmed at first, but with great wonderment, was soon holding the baby like a champ.

 Daddy was a gentle helper.

 Hmm, that looks like a real baby.

She's soft, I kinda like her.

APPROVED!  We'll keep her.  It's almost official.

She just has to meet the rest of the family.  The only one missing is Ty, the eldest.  He was at football practice and yet to meet, as Abby calls her, Baby Brebecca.  He met her after practice and I can official say, fell in love at first sight.  Folks - she'ssssss in there!

Dayne, holding precious cargo.

Cael, overjoyed, announced that she is perfect, and beautiful.  He's a natural.

Emma was a little overwhelmed and needed Daddy's help.  She was not very happy that the baby wasn't dressed yet.  (Don't worry Em's - there's a princess dress all ready for the baby in her closet at home.)  I think Rebecca will grow on her.  Emma's about as sweet as they come and will be a great, big sister.

Back safely in Mommy's arms.

Well, that's it for now.  I'm back on Grannie duty in less than an hour.  The troops get out of school half day today, and Mommy, Daddy and Baby Rebecca are coming HOME.
Grammy with so many blessings she has enough to overflow!