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Today I want to talk about our great neighbors. They are friendly, don’t borrow all of my sugar, and take pride in their homes and yards. They can also be generous; a fact I was reminded of recently. Last Saturday, we had our first nice day since the wildfire smoke had made our air quality hazardous, and kept us indoors for an entire week. As if the COVID quarantine wasn’t bad enough, now we couldn’t breath the air outside our front doors. Ugh. But finally the rain came, the sky was blue, and it was time to peak outside and assess the damages. Let’s just say that dirt and smoky grit covered every outside surface; both horizontal and vertical.
Nothing clears the remnants of a dust storm and a week of heavy smoke like a good shower, so I started by spraying off the side door, porch and window. Ahh, much better! Next it was time to hose off the front door, porch and windows. Our house exterior is stucco, and the mud and smoke just rolled off of every wall as I sprayed the entire front of the house. After drying the door and windows, everything just glistened. So satisfying! Finally, it was time to tackle the covered patio in the back. My husband pruned the shrubs and worked on the pool, while I cleaned up the herb garden and cleaned out some pots. Next it was time to hose off the patio, the back windows and all of the outdoor furniture cushions. It was so cathartic to watch the muddy water run off, as I attacked each piece of furniture, the walls, and windows.
So right about now you’re probably asking yourself what all of this has to do with our great neighbors. Well, I’m getting there:) While I was out hosing off the back patio, our next door neighbor came to the door and handed my husband a sack full of miniature pumpkins and dried corn she had grown in her garden. Well, she sure knows the way to this decorators heart. The funny thing is, I had just contemplated buying some at the store the day before, but had decided to wait. I’m so glad I did, as these were just perfect.
The next day, I made up a couple of arrangements using the white pumpkins on a cake pedestal, with a candle in the middle. Although I typically add more color to my fall decorating, I just love the peaceful simplicity of the soft white arrangement. Just adding a ring of greenery underneath and a couple of pinecones gave it the natural elements that added warmth to the arrangement. I haven’t displayed the corn and orange pumpkins yet, but will soon.
Within 15 minutes of receiving the pumpkins and dried corn, I received a text from our neighbors across the cul-de-sac who had a surplus of tomatoes they wanted to share. Yes, please! We have had a vegetable garden in past years, but not lately. It is so easy to forget how much better ripened on the vine tomatoes taste, and these were perfection. We used them in salads, and on BLT sandwiches for lunch the next day. Yummy!
We are taught to love our neighbors. This recent generosity served as a gentle reminder that even sharing a fall bounty can make all the difference in someone’s day; especially if they are knee deep in a muddy patio. As I said at the onset, we have very nice neighbors…