Save the Mums!

A few years ago, I was visiting with a gardener friend who was showing me her garden. I commented on the beautiful mums in one of her beds and she nonchalantly informed me that they were leftover from the previous fall's decorating.


I had just assumed that potted mums were a one hit wonder , that should be thrown out when Christmas arrived. No way!

After Thansgiving, chuck your pumpkins, haybales and cornstalks in your compost piles and stick those tired old mums in your flower beds. Choose a semi-sunny spot. When they seem to die off, cut them back almost to the ground and leave them be until next spring. They'll start growing back in May and be blooming by June.

Faithfully water them, cut them back in early Summer so they don't get leggy and snip off spent blooms. Come September, you'll have a jump start on your fall decorating!

So, save your mums! Don't throw them out! At the very least, give them to me!


Getting Ready!

T's surgery is next Tuesday, first family for Thanksgiving arrive on Wednesday with the next batch of guests on Monday! We are hosting Thanksgiving and will have a minimum of five cooks cooking all week.
It's lots of fun, but our kitchen had reached a state of deplorable disorder. Today is dedicated to getting things in order, so no one has to ask where things are or what is what.
I was inspired by Edie of LifeinGrace who did an incredible 31 day series on hospitality.
Today's goals: 1. Dedicated beverage center for coffee, tea, cups and glasses. It's next to the fridge--brilliant (!). 2. Baking center with all the staples labeled and close to the bowls, mixer and oven. 3. Tidied up spice cabinet and 4. A Cleaned out pantry.

I also treated myself to brand new glassware. It was a minor splurge at Walmart that has made a HUGE difference. Seeing the non-scratched, shining everyday glasses on the shelf gives me a domestic thrill every time I pass by. I'm also less embarrasses to offer folks a drink! I also bought a package of new dish towels at Sam's. They are a great value (24 for 12.00) I never use paper towels in the kitchen, so our towels take a beating and were pretty grungy. The old ones will go to the storage room for really nasty and outdoor work. Here are some photos of the ( very much still in) progress: