Happy Autumn!!! and other things…..

Today is the Autumn Equinox!

We are all very excited for fall here at Merry Magpie.  Too bad it’s 95 degrees outside today!

Our school lessons today revolved around learning about the various harvest and equinox celebrations around the world and throughout history followed by crafts.  All three girls knew that papier mache was on the agenda and they could barely contain themselves to sit through the lessons first.

Martha Stewart came through in a big way for us today.  I have, like many of you, a love/hate relationship with the eminent Ms. Stewart.  I won’t get into that right now except to say that all of the ideas I took from her books and magazines today went off without a hitch, beginning with the aforementioned papier mache.

We glued black and orange crepe paper onto balloons and hung them to dry.  Once they are done, we can pop the balloons inside them and they will hold their shapes.  The black ones are destined to become cat faces with open mouths to hold candy.  The orange will become a pumpkin.

It was extremely messy,but remarkably easy.

Next we assembled crowns of leaves made from rubber stamps, black tempera paint and colored construction paper.

Oona hasn’t taken hers off.

After our school day ended we celebrated by watching It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown and eating Ghost Toast with Boo-nilla milk.

When you get right down to it, none of us will be the least bit sorry to bid summer 2010 adieu.  It’s been brutally hot and dry this year.  The only sadness is closing the pool for the year and saying goodbye to fresh summer food.

Luckily, I really enjoy cold weather foods as well.

Fresh pumpernickel anyone?  Or how about the delectable Pirate Peaches I made the other night?  Next year I will be certain to make at least 100 jars of it once peaches are in season again.

We mustn’t leave out Martha’s puff pastry pumpkins I tried out as well.  I didn’t have a pumpkin cookie cutter (go figure) so I had to use an acorn shape.  They are filled with gruyere and dijon.  So good!!!

Emily especially liked these.

The coming of autumn means the animals should be more comfortable, as well.  They’re definitely more playful when it’s cooler.

You can see Milkshakes is getting a bit shaggy.  She’s part Cashmere – I don’t know what else she might be, and for all I know she could be ALL Cashmere.  Either way I am going to try and comb her and see if I can get some of that shagginess taken care of.  She is beginning to put on some weight as well, which will help if we breed her.

Jerry’s wool is growing in very nice as well.  I am going to try and do a better job of shearing him in the spring so I can spin the fleece.   Or at least sell it to someone else who’ll want to spin it. I have more than enough knitting and yarn projects to keep me going through the next millenium. And really I do need the cooler weather for those.  Sitting with a huge pile of wool in your lap is not the most comfortable summer activity.

At least it looks like fall out there.