Friday, November 1, 2019

Changing with the season

by Lorraine Bartlett / Lorna Barrett / L.L. Bartlett

A few years back, I didn't decorate for any holiday other than Christmas. Then I discovered YouTube videos and all the decorating challenges and collaborations. It's a whole network of women (and a few men) who decorate their homes with thrift-store finds and Dollar Tree hauls.

Truthfully, I've lost my taste for Dollar Tree hauls. Most of the stuff is cheap (hey, it only costs a buck) and the expectation is that it will be tossed in short time. That doesn't sit right with me. I whole-heartedly believe in recycling, which is why I have decided to cut back my visits to the Dollar Tree and heartily embrace thrifting.

And I've done it! If I want to buy an item to decorate my home, I will try to get it secondhand, either through yard, rummage, or thrift store sales. I even apply that to clothing. The items I buy new are socks, underwear, and jeans. I might buy a new T-shirt if I go to a tourist site, but for the most part, I buy secondhand. And it's not because I can't afford to buy new. But in my soul I'm a picker. (Did I mention I had a booth in an antiques/collectibles arcade for 12 years?) As a child, I wore my "cousin"  Barbara's hand-me-downs. I never bothered me because those dresses were new to me.
I've tried to stop using so much plastic, but it's hard.

When Mr. L and I go out to lunch, often we only eat half of what we order. We have a fiber-mesh bag (originally from a winery and meant to hold 4 bottles of wine that I got free at a yard sale) that I cut out the segments, and now perfectly holds two reusable plastic containers. Now we don't have to use plastic or Styrofoam containers.

Back to my decorating finds...95% of my fall decor was previously enjoyed by someone else. I have no plans to buy anymore Christmas stuff. I already have a full storage closest full of it. But thanks to yard and rummage sales, I can now decorate my home (and for dirt cheap) for every season.
"Oh, but you're an author. You must be rich!"

Ha! Did you know that publishers only pay authors twice a year? In April and October we can shoot the wad, but for the rest of the year we're watching our pennies. (Try telling the utility company you only get paid twice a year. Can you say "Collection Agency?")

But I digress.

So, Halloween is over and now it's time to decorate for Thanksgiving. I don't have much for that holiday, but the colorful pumpkins and faux autumn leaves can hang out until the fourth week of the month. I have two carved Pilgrims my Dad made, a beauty of a  brown transferware turkey platter, and a couple of 1950s turkey candles (never burned). I'll haul them out this weekend and enjoy them for the month and then it will be full-out CHRISTMAS 24/7. I love it! Mr. L...not so much.

So, what are your decorating plans for the next month?

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