Day 13 Every year as Fall rolls around we make plans to go apple and pumpkin picking.  But, most of all, my husband can't wait to sink his teeth into a hot apple dumpling at a local apple barn.     When we lived in Michigan we often took a drive to Crane Orchards and Crane's Pie Pantry Restaurant & Bakery in Fennville.   We joined long lines of people, standing out the door and winding around the building while waiting for a seat, there to enjoy a fresh-baked peach pie, or apple dumpling, and a 10 cent glass of sweet apple cider.       We have since moved … [Read more...]

Day 12   A year ago today the movers pulled up to our house and loaded all our worldly possessions onto their long blue and white truck.  In the midst of a driving (make that...monsoon) rainstorm.  How everything did not arrive all wet and moldy is a mystery. After a good sleep, we pulled out-of-town with the cats and drove to our new home.  One of the first things I was excited to do at my new house was to fill the front window box.  With pumpkins.  But, there was no time, or extra money, for plumping with pumpkins.  Instead we were on a mission to clean, and paint several rooms, before the … [Read more...]

Day 11   Today I got up from the table in the breakfast nook and noticed a small famed graphic that usually sits on the generous chair rail there.  We had been eating out on the sun porch since Spring and except for dusting the chair rail, once in a while, I hardly noticed the picture there.  Isn't that just the way it is?  We stop noticing things sometimes, even things we think are important or beautiful.  It's sad, really.     I'm sure you're wondering about the picture that I once again noticed.  It originally was from one of my favorite calendar artists, Ellen Stouffer.  Are … [Read more...]

Day 10   Recently I put together a little luncheon tablescape on my sun porch and wrote about it here.   In the busyness of the week, I left the place setting on the table.  One morning I walked out there and discovered my little Poppy laying right in the middle of the tablescape soaking up the sun.  She relaxed to the point where she was just a little puddle of gray and tan fur.     In our house, cats generally aren't allowed up on the counters or the tables.  But, she was definitely in her happy spot, so I let her stay.   And like any good pet owner, I took her picture.  You can … [Read more...]

Day 9     Wow!  I can't believe that I am already nine whole days into 31 Extraordinary Days!  Are you having fun wondering what I'll have up my sleeve every day?  Me too.  :D   Whatever in the world is Fall Fluffing? It's my term for taking what we have and making it a bit more, well....extraordinary.  Kind of like when you walk over to the sofa after guests leave and pick up the pillows and fluff them....nestle them against the sofa back...just right...and smile.  Fluffing. Recently I acquired a buffet or sideboard.  Is it the same thing?  Does anyone know?  Anyhow....I've … [Read more...]

Day 8   This post contains affiliate links.  When you click on these links I may receive compensation at no extra cost to you.   Fall is about nesting.   It's a time when we fluff and make our homes cozy for the cooler weather ahead.  Some of us even change-up our decor and bring in the season's harvest of pumpkins and gourds and Indian corn. It's also a good time to do a little reorganizing.  Most of us like to spend as much time outside as possible in the summer.  (Unless you live where it was unbearably hot this summer, that is.)  In our haste to get out the door, we may let the little … [Read more...]

Day 7     Why be ordinary when you (we) can be extraordinary!     What can make a day extraordinary?   One way... is to have a heart of gratitude.     Earlier this year I started counting gifts.  It was an intentional discipline on my part.  As I undertook the challenge my eyes opened to seeing both the good and the not-so-good occurrences in my life as gifts.     There's a verse in the Bible that I love... You will live in joy and peace.     The mountains and hills will burst into song,     and the trees of the field will clap their … [Read more...]

Day 6       The early evening light in October is extraordinary.  Magical. I relish it.  The sky is a deeper blue.  Trees stand proud in a blaze of color Illuminated leaves appear as wispy stained glass windows.     Leaves.... Piling up on the sidewalk. Brilliant on the trees. Extraordinary. Stunning. Magical. Leaves.     “Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.”  ~ Albert Camus   Savoring every glint of Autumn's light. Marveling at the colors of the trees in full Autumn bloom. Infinite … [Read more...]

Day 5   "Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier. Be the living expression of God's kindness. Kindness in your face. Kindness in your eyes. Kindness in your smile." ~Mother Teresa~   I came across that quote of Mother Teresa the other day and thought, "Could I impact another life so that following our brief encounter the other person would walk away better and happier?" Could you...or I...really do that?  Really?     On this adventure of 31 Extraordinary Days we are exploring what it means to live more fully, more intentionally. And … [Read more...]

Day 4   “I cannot endure to waste anything so precious as autumnal sunshine by staying in the house.” ~ Nathaniel Hawthorne~     When the autumn skies are mostly blue and the sun is shining I want to be outside?  How about you? Do you do any fall fluffing in your outdoor spaces?     As I attempt to live more fully, more intentionally, I find myself taking time to make inviting  outdoor spots.  Such as the addition of a pillow to a chair.  Rearranging the seating in the fall to take advantage of the sun's warmth.  Or even bringing a little decor...which is often … [Read more...]

Day 3     Last Friday night we were invited to the home of some new friends for dinner.  We had the best time. When was the last time you asked someone over for dinner?     All this month we're exploring how to live an extraordinary life. When we live life to the full we do things outside our comfort zone.  We do crazy things like carve time out of our busy schedules to spend with friends.  We clean the house, decide on a menu, figure out what to do with the pets, or even the kids...just so we can invite new or old friends to dinner. When was the last time you … [Read more...]

Day 2   ...I Love about Fall!   Zinnias   Isn't it the little things that can make your day? Like... Zinnias Crisp cool air The smell of wet leaves Wooly Bear Caterpillars The Aroma of Concord Grapes Fresh Pressed Apple Cider Pumpkins, Squash, & Gourds Sitting by the Fire with a Creamy Mug of Hot Cocoa Falling Leaves A Kaleidoscope of Red, Orange, Yellow, and Green Corn.... Candy, Indian, & Stalks The Aroma of Apples in the Apple Barn Hot Apple Pie, Crisp, & Dumplings Butternut Squash Soup Warm Wooly Sweaters Snuggly Flannel Sheets El … [Read more...]

Hello!  If this is your first time here, scroll down to read day one.  Otherwise, here are the current links to the rest of the series:: 31 Extraordinary Days…. {Day 2} 20 Extraordinary Little Things...I Love About Fall! {Day 3} October Dining...Outdoors! {Day 4} Autumn Inside Outside {Day 5} Just a little kindness... {Day 6} Autumn....where every leaf is a flower {Day 7} Joy Day! | Intentionally Developing a Heart of Gratitude {Day 8} Organize the Nest for Fall {Day 9} Fall Fluffing {Day 10} Breathe {Day 11} think about such things {Day 12} Fall Window Box ~ Plumping with … [Read more...]