Our Weekend (aka That Time I Decorated)

Autumn is coming, people!!! Are you as ridiculously excited as I am?! Has your Pinterest begun to burst with DIY pumpkin projects, visual shrines to pumpkin spice lattes, that Anne of Green Gables quote, and impossibly gorgeous wreaths that claim to be easy to construct, but which we all know none of us really has any time to make???

((What?! TWO Lord of the Rings references??? She is out of control...))
Seriously. (And I’m totally ok with it.)


I know. And it makes my heart glow positively gold, then orange, then red in anticipation!!! Even though it is still utterly summery outside (thanks a lot, August…) I still could not resist getting out our fall decorations this weekend… And while we’re on the subject of August, for which I’ve explained my general feelings of disdain here, I must add that there are 3 reasons August is redeemed in my mind. They are as follows:

1) my most excellent friend, college roommate (who shares an understanding of the trials of naturally curly hair), and co-creative, Heather, was born this month.

How cute are we?
How cute were we?
Yes. One night at college we were board and dressed up like pirates. There may be an entire Facebook album about it.
Yes. One night at college we were bored and dressed up like pirates. There may be an entire Facebook album about it.

2) my other most excellent friend, letter-writer, and co-adventurer, Brooke, was also born this month. (And probably more of my most excellent friends were, too. However, my brain is selective with whose birthdays it remembers…)

Billowy sleeves= Me. Arms jubilantly in the air= Brooke. Circa 2006?
Billowy sleeves= Me.
Arms jubilantly in the air= Brooke. Circa 2006? Just admit you’ve always wanted a dress with billowy sleeves like that… And cool friends who will dress up and geek out with you.
This is from Ryan's and my wedding day in 2010. So... we're slightly more grown up here. (on the outside)
This is from Ryan’s and my wedding day in 2010. So… we’re slightly more grown up here. (on the outside)

3) As Brooke so eloquently put it: “[August] is the month of quiet haze that stretches itself out on lavender horizons. Everything hushes. It’s the only time of year you can hear the last of the plants growing in their dirt beds. They are amber days with caramelized sunsets.” Isn’t that the most beautiful, Anne-of-Green-Gables-ish way to describe it? (I know what you’re thinking: “Man, SHE ought to be writing a blog…” I. Completely. Agree.)

So. Even though I must even begrudgingly like August (because I am determined to discover beauty no matter how hot it is, or how comparable getting into a new schedule may be to putting on a stiff, scratchy sweater, or how many buzzing, stinging wasps/bees still patrol the air), I still am excited about August and decided to put up my fall decor.

But before I show you pictures, let there be no false pretense between us- this is NOT a place of perfection. My home is a place where dishes run amuck, where piles of laundry seem to breed like unwanted vermin, and where certain corners of the fridge are best left undisturbed. Sort of like this scene in the Fellowship of the Ring…specifically, the first 20ish seconds, then skipping to minute 1:52. ((What?! TWO Lord of the Rings References?!?!?! She is out of control…)) Except of course when my husband and I go on a 5-day cleaning rampage and get it all swept away where it belongs… which then seems to last 5 minutes before the disarray returns.


Speaking of imperfection- are you ready for my fancy, schmancy iPhone pics??? [insert cheers of jubilation here] Now, now. Calm yourselves…

fall table centerpiece apples just pretty 1


All the flowers/garlands I got last year from- are you ready?- the dollar store… The Dollar Tree specifically, because it’s the Target of dollar stores. All others are Walmarts.  If you attempt assembling your own dollar store decor fabulousness, I recommend that, where garlands are concerned, you select multiple colors and/or types of leaves, if your dollar store is snazzy enough to stock different kinds. It looks more realistic (to me, anyway). And isn’t there something extra-lovely about apples in autumn? Those are real btw. I draw the line at fake fruit…


What’s that? More, you say??? As you wish…


just pretty 2 island centerpiece pray



Yeah, the first one is just another angle of the mason jar centerpiece on the table. I just think it’s pretty. Also, the chunky, dark shape in the bottom corner is the word “Faith” if you can’t see it. The second 2 pictures are what’s on our island. I’m not counting the verse on the prayer stand as one of my pieces for the Reclaiming Abundance Project, in case you were wondering. (You weren’t? Oh. J/k.) Though, it is on my list, because I love that verse… (Psalm 37:4). I also wrote 1 John 3:17-18 at the bottom, because it’s the foundational verse for If Then Movement. And here’s a garland I wrapped around our family tree picture frame above the couch:

family tree

Complete with the ever-trendy thermostat. (Someone wasn’t thinking that through. I’m looking at you, Apartment Complex.) This is obviously more of a subtle nod to autumn, and this mostly because I didn’t have any more garlands left. 🙂 Still…


And here are two drawings I finished:

Lady of Autumn

This one is called “Lady of Autumn” and it’s 11×14. (Not that this is the purpose of this blog, but if you’d like one for your own, it’s $30 per print plus shipping costs, and/or $60 for the original. Email me at hallcott2020@gmail.com to purchase!) Oh, what I would give for my hair to be perfect swirliness like that! Makes me think of this that I found on Pinterest.

Harvest Pumpkins

This is called “Harvest Pumpkins.” (Did I blow your mind with that ingenious title? Yes. That’s why I’m a blogger, everyone…because of my literary prowess. I wield each keystroke as a mighty blow to mediocrity.) Sigh! Ah, sarcasm. How would we get through life without it?

harvest lamp

This picture is a bit dark, but since I had no frame, I glued the Harvest Pumpkins picture (as in with a glue stick, y’all- kindergarten style) to a piece of scrapbook paper and set it on a cookbook holder I have (because we all know I’m not using it for cookbooks). And in front of it, of course, is our utterly unlovely landline… Why we even have it I’ll never know…

darth vader

And what fall decor could be complete without a Lego Darth Vader key chain?! Just kidding, he’s there all the time. Isn’t he so cute and tiny and evil? I put him- erm… I mean Santa- put him in Ryan’s stocking one recent Christmas.


And the final, pinnacle piece in my parade of autumnal decor is…


THIS little cutiepants!!! (Don’t worry, I didn’t leave her alone on the couch. She’s rolling around a lot, these days.) She makes any room look a zillion times lovelier. Which was, of course, the whole point of having a baby…

So, there you have it! An entire post basically rambling about my excitement about autumn and my dollar store decor. You’re welcome. Maybe I was motivated to write it because I’m So. Stinkin. Proud. of the fact that we cleaned (most of) our apartment. But mainly, I just wanted to share a little of my joy- my thankfulness- over these little things. They’re little reminders really- fake garlands bear a paltry beauty compared to real autumn leaves, but they still help me participate in my mission to seek beauty, to live it. And in that way, I suppose they are part of Reclaiming Abundance. Though they are fake, they are also- somehow- real. (Feel free to borrow this paragraph when you need to explain to your spouse why you had to buy out the Dollar Tree’s fake flower section.)


How do you like to seek and live beauty?? Do you like dollar store decor, too? (And/or do you know of other equally cheap and fabulous places where I might find other goodies?)

7 thoughts on “Our Weekend (aka That Time I Decorated)

  1. You make me want to hang out with you, eat copious amount of hot soup and drink delicious beverages (do I hear the sounds of a Chili con Carnivale?), and visit the Dollar Tree. And blog, as I believe you told me the last time we hung out that I should do. 😛
    Let’s do a couple of these things!

    1. I love it!!! Yes, Chili con Carnivale sounds deliciously exciting… and yes to you blogging as well! The world is in need of your amazing cooking/health and DIY tricks… And by the world, I mean me. ❤ (Btw, I'm so honored to read this and commented!)

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