The only thing better than growing your own vegetables is having a squirrel do it for you.
Earlier this summer, I noticed a vine growing under a manzanita shrub. The large leaves told me that the mystery vine was something squash-related. Over the summer, it wound its way through the branches of the manzanita. The vine seemed to thrive in its location – a location I would never have chosen for it.
How did it get there? I can only speculate that a squirrel buried the seed last winter. I waited to see exactly what the squirrel had planted for us.
Thank you, thoughtful squirrel, for supplying me with one of the most popular fall decor items out there – white pumpkins! Well, white-ish anyway.
A Quick Centerpiece
Recently we decided to host one last dinner on our back patio. The table we use is long and narrow, so we couldn’t have a bulky centerpiece.
And I avoid using floral centerpieces outdoors even though it looks so dreamy on Instragram and in magazines. In the real world, flowers can attract bees to the table.
The white pumpkins were not quite ready to harvest, but I decided to sacrifice one to use in a simple centerpiece.
I tucked a few hops in around the pumpkin.
You might be wondering what in the world the pumpkin is sitting on. No it’s not a candlestick – it’s what’s left of this urn after it took an unfortunate tumble.
I hate to waste anything.
With my centerpiece done, I just needed to come up with some after-dark lighting for the dinner party.
So Chris and I wound a couple of strings of lights through the frame of a patio umbrella to make a quick chandelier.
We secured the strands with clothespins. Next time, we will come up with a more elegant method for attaching them.
And Chris set a couple of his vintage Coleman lanterns in strategic locations.
With our heat lamp cranked, and using some of these tips to help keep bugs away, we all stayed cozy and comfortable.
Chris’s first attempt at smoked ribs was a success, and one of our guests brought a wonderful blueberry pie.
Seems we always try to squeeze in one final patio dinner before the summer ends, and this one went off without a hitch – thanks in part to one very talented squirrel.
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Wondering where I got those crazy dinner napkins? I made them using batik fabric quarters (also known as “fat quarters). The fabric quarters are just the right size for a dinner napkin, and I simply double-hemmed the edges.
But for anyone who doesn’t like to sew, there is a lovely assortment of handcrafted batik napkins on Etsy.
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