10 Nostalgic Fall Decorating Ideas-DIY

Let dry until no moisture is left and flowers are dried completely- few days

In the olden days people decorated their homes with homemade treasures, often with resources grown on their own farms. I’m excited to share with you 10 nostalgic fall ideas we made this year from resources grown(mostly) our property.  I hope you make a few for your home! If you have any  old-fashioned ideas for fall decorating–I would love to hear them!

An industrious woman always plans for the future. Pin this post so you can plan for the things you’ll make next fall.  In the spring you’ll want to plant  flowers that you’ll dry at the end of summer for your fall arrangement. You’ll want to plant gourds and pumpkins if you have space. Back in the day even those who had little money purchased a few basic items in town at a store, like cloves and a lemon. I spent less than $10 on everything I made in this post.  I’m not sure how much money a grapevine wreath is in the store. You may find one at a yard sale or thrift store for a fraction of the cost of a new one.  A good resource to find free treasures to decorate wreaths would be in the forest. Go on a nature hike and return with bags of possibilities.

#1 Dried Zinnia Wreath

My summer Zinnia's dried--now I can enjoy them all year!

My summer Zinnia’s dried and made into a wreath! I enjoy them all year! I’m giving away zinnia seeds to 3 people! Just tell me you want seeds in comment section! I’ll pick 3 winners next week–save them for next spring!

Picked fresh Zinnia's multiple colors-you can see them growing from the window.

I picked fresh Zinnia’s of multiple colors-you can see them growing from the window.

Pour silica crystals into a large bowl- set flowers on top

Pour silica crystals into a large bowl- set flowers on top.

Cover flowers with silica crystals. I've had my crystals for 18 years. They still work.

Cover flowers with  crystals. I’ve had my crystals for 18 years. They still work.

After the flowers come out of microwave- shake off crystals and hang with clothes pins on a drying rack

Put covered flowers  in microwave for a couple of minutes-shake off crystals and hang with clothes pins on a drying rack.

Let dry until no moisture is left and flowers are dried completely- few days

Let dry completely for a couple of days- these are ready!

Use a glue gun to glue the dried flowers into place

Use a glue gun to glue the dried flowers onto grapevine wreath

 

#2 Pinecone Tree- We have pine trees on our property, so pine cones are plentiful. If you don’t have any–ask someone who does to give you some. Most people who have pine cones have hundreds or thousands to share.

Dale made this beautiful pine cone tree for me! We're putting lights on it tonight!

Dale made this beautiful pine cone tree for me! We’re putting lights on it tonight!

Some pine cones are open, some closed. I put the closed ones in the oven to open them. *pumpkin grown on Glasgow Farm

Some pine cones are open, some closed. I put the closed ones in the oven to open them. *pumpkin grown on Glasgow Farm

Pinecones_in_bowls

 

Closed pinecones- put in 200 degree oven until they fully open- couple of hours or more

Closed pinecones- put in 200 degree oven until they fully open- couple of hours or more

Half opened

Half opened

Pinecones_in_oven_open

Fully open- you can turn heat up for faster opening or reduce to slow–they are dry and break more easily when to heated too high

 

Two large tomato cages from the garden served as the base of the pine cone tree

Two large tomato cages from the garden served as the base of the pine cone tree

Dale screwed screws into the bottom of each pine cone and then took a long piece of wire-wrapped each pine cone tightly around each screw and wrapped around base of tomato cage

Dale screwed screws into the bottom of each pine cone and then took a long piece of wire-wrapped each pine cone tightly around each screw and wrapped around base of tomato cage

Pinecone_Christmas_tree_DG_101413_Hartwood_VA_SG_inside_1186x890

Pinecone_Christmas_tree_SG_102113_Hartwood_VA

 

 

#3 Cornucopia I bought our basket- but baskets are easy to make if you’d like to be 100% authentic!

I've had this cornucopia for 20+ years- every year I fill it will fall produce

I’ve had this cornucopia for 20+ years- every year I fill it with fall produce

#4 Pine cone garland

Pine cone garland- string pine cones on twine and hang from nails at your kitchen window

Pine cone garland- string pine cones on twine and hang from nails at your kitchen window

#5 Stained Glass Dried Leaf & Flower Art

Supplies needed: Iron, flowers or fall leaves and wax paper

Supplies needed: Iron, flowers or fall leaves and wax paper

 

Stained glass dried leaf & blossom art- Pick fall colored leaves and flowers, place between two pieces of wax paper and press with hot iron until sealed all the way around and inbetween

Stained glass dried leaf & blossom art- Pick fall colored leaves and flowers, place between two pieces of wax paper and press with hot iron until sealed all the way around and in-between Can you guess what these are?

 

10 Nostalgic Fall Decorating Ideas-DIY 049

Pansy in the center

Fall Leaf Stained Glass

#6 Pomander- Clove Studded Lemon

Prick lemon or orange with nail and then insert cloves into the holes. Cover the entire lemon or orange if you want it to last years. Then sprinkle oris root over top of it and let sit in paper bag for a couple of weeks. The orris root preserves it. The cloved lemon to the left is 18 years old.

Prick lemon or orange with nail and then insert cloves into the holes. Cover the entire lemon or orange if you want it to last years. Then sprinkle orris root, cinnamon and ground cloves  over top of it and let sit in paper bag for a couple of weeks. Every few days I shook the bag around making sure the powder covered it well.  The orris root preserves it. The cloved lemon to the left is 18 years old.

The blue bowl holding the cloves was made by my sweet nephew Thomas Killian, he makes  handmade pottery and has an online store.

Pomanders are wonderful smelling.  You can decorate them in patterns, wrap a ribbon around them and place in a bowl or cover completely and preserve them for years to come.

Supplies needed: small or medium size unblemished fruit. (Oranges, Apples or Lemons)

cloves

Spice mixture: 1 tablespoon each: cinnamon,  ground cloves and orris root

Knitting needle, toothpick or nail

#7 Corn Husk Garland

All the corn stalks tied together and ready to hang over front door

All the corn stalks tied together and ready to hang over front door

I bought 15 regular corn cobs @5 for $2.  Pull the husks up over the corn--like in the photo

I bought 15 regular corn cobs @5 for $2. Pull the husks up over the corn–like in the photo

10 Nostalgic Fall Decorating Ideas_DIY_004_1186_890

Tied twine around each corn husk

I tried to hurry the process by putting in the oven on 200 for 10 hours. It wasn't perfect, it overcooked the husks. You're supposed to let them dry in well circulated space for several weeks

I tried to hurry the process by putting in the oven on 200 for 10 hours. It wasn’t perfect, it overcooked the husks. You’re supposed to let them dry in well circulated space for several weeks

After out of the oven I tied all the corn cobs together

After out of the oven I tied all the corn cobs together with twine

 

 

All the corn stalks tied together and ready to hang over front door

All the corn stalks tied together and ready to hang over front door

 

#8 Natural Wreath

Fall wreath- Fall weeds and produce on a grapevine wreath–whatever you

find interesting in your part of the world that dry’s well- stick in the wreath

and hot glue into place. This only last one season. Next year it will be an

entirely different look depending on what I find interesting in our field.

 wreath1186X890

Weeds growing in our field- picked for wreath

Weeds growing in our field- picked for wreath

Wreath_corn

#9 Pomegranate pumpkin face

Pomegranite is hard fleshed and easy to use like a pumpkin- Crave with small knife, let dry and enjoy

Pomegranite is hard fleshed and easy to use like a pumpkin- Crave with small knife, let dry and enjoy-

#10 Retro Art

 

I'm going to send a copy of this retro Thanksgiving Day card to all my subscribers next week! Mine is framed and sitting in my kitchen window. You can find vintage frames at all thrift stores!

I’m going to send a copy of my retro Thanksgiving Day card to all my subscribers next week! Mine is framed and sitting in my kitchen window. You can find vintage frames at all thrift stores!

I’m giving away some of my zinnia seeds! Tell me your favorite color flower below to enter your name for the drawing. I’m picking three winners for the seeds. I’ll announce winners next week.

If you are a subscriber to my blog I’ll send you the retro Thanksgiving Day art next week!

Winner of $40 Target gift card and devotion book  from last week is Mary T. you posted on2013/10/14 at 12:09 PM! email me your address!

How to Make and Can Pear Butter

Sharon’s Pear Butter( I double the recipe)

We have an abundance of pears on our property. We just found another tree drooping with pears a couple of weeks ago in our field. Some people are allergic to apples so pears are a great way to enjoy the same recipes with a fruit similar. I would recommend using apple cider in this recipe if your family members can have apples. I posted how to make your own pear cider in here.

10 cups chopped pears (approximately 5lbs)

2 cups pear cider (you can use apple)

3 cups sugar (you can make it without sugar)

1 tsp ground gloves

1/2 tsp allspice

3 tsp ground cinnamon

1. Wash, peel,core and quarter pears. You don’t have to peel the pears if they’re blemish free.

2.Cook pears in cider and sugar until done, 20 min’s on high.

3. Pour pears in small quantity into blender and puree.

4. After all pears are pureed put spices in and stir

5. Pour into a pan and cook in oven on 350 degrees for at least 7 hours. It becomes thick and rich the longer it cooks.

Don’t use iron pans, it turns the pear butter a dark color and takes on the taste of iron. I learned this the hard way. Glass, stainless steel or ceramic are good choices. Test for desired thickness by spooning a drop of pear butter on cold plate. If no liquid oozes around edges, it is ready.

6. Ladle into sterile jars, leaving 1/4 inch head space.

7. Process in boiling water canner for 10 minutes.

Yeilds 5 pints

 

With Every Great Endeavor there’s Manure to Shovel

DSC_0232Farm life lives up to its nostalgic romantic ideology most days.  Other times it’s stinking hard! Like the days you have to shovel manure. . . The scenic farm with sheep grazing on luscious green fields, cows milked in scrupulously clean barns, and chickens nesting on fresh hay bundles- are the product of unseen hard work.

Shoveling manure is one of my least favorite farm chores.  Yesterday, Dale and I shoveled the goat house.  If you’ve never done it, there’s no way to describe it.

A pitch fork is needed to get under the old matted hay and then you start lifting layers off. Each layer gets heavier with saturated dense manure.  At first you don’t want to touch the stuff, but by the end you just want to get the job done.  So with gloves on, you start supporting the heavier mounds onto the pitch fork and hauling it out onto the back of the tractor.

It’s horribly smelly. You see bugs you wish you’d never seen.  You’re filthier than you ever thought possible and your back feels the weight of the day by the last shovel full-but it’s a requirement on a good farm. The goat house is vitally important to us.  Our goats give us an abundant harvest of delicious, organic milk every day.

With every great endeavor there’s manure to shovel.

Proverbs 14:4 says, “Where there are no oxen, the manger is empty, but from the strength of an ox come abundant harvests.”

This proverb has a lesson for us all. Whether you’re a mom, business owner, missionary, student, laborer or farmer—the principle is the same, without taking care of the hard stuff there’s no reward.

The farm that lives up to its nostalgic romantic ideology takes care of the hard stuff first and then all enjoy the by-product of its labor.  The same is true for you.  No matter what you’re going through, you must take care of the unmentionables.  These are the things no one else see’s, the harder things.  Keep plowing forward with grace and strength- and in due season you (and many others) will see the fruit of all your labor.

“Strength and honor are her clothing; She shall rejoice in time to come. “Proverbs 31:25

The goat houses all clean, today!

Clean goat houses

Farm life is nostalgic and romantic indeed but never idle

Farm life is nostalgic and romantic indeed but never idle

Ann Peterson is the winner of the drawing last week! She chose morning glories for her prize! Ann- send me your address and I’ll send you the seeds from my morning glory vine!

Morning glory seeds from our vines

Morning glory seeds from our vines- Winner- Ann Peterson!

Fall Harvest- Yeast Bread from Grape Pulp- Fried Green Tomatoes

This morning’s harvest- a quart of goat milk, eggs, bunch of green tomatoes, okra, pears, figs, spaghetti and butternut squash, herbs and autumn olives.  Do you see the pumpkins growing outside my window?

Fall is the busiest time on the Glasgow Farm. The harvest is plentiful but the laborers are few! We’ve got so many organic figs we don’t know what to do them all.  If you live close, you can pick some up! They’ll be coming in the whole month of September. You can freeze or can them for making Figgy pudding. Once you pick them, you’ve got to use them. They don’t have a long shelf life, like a couple of days.

We’ve also got pears a plenty. The branches are heavy but they aren’t completely ripe  yet. Another week, and if you live close you can come by and get some for making pear butter. One day I looked out my kitchen window and saw a squirrel, a rabbit and a groundhog all enjoying the pear tree at the same time.  Even with the wild eating them every day there’s still PLENTY. I wish they would have stayed still long enough for me to get my camera to show you!

More and more Milk Thistles continue to grow and are ready to be harvested–I just can’t get to them all!

My tomatoes didn’t do well- not hot enough this year and a LOT of rainy days. I’ve had plenty of green tomatoes.

Mostly green tomatoes all summer

Mostly green tomatoes all summer

Wash the tomatoes, slice, dip in beaten egg drench in flour both sides-sprinkle your favorite seasonings and salt on while frying

Wash the tomatoes, slice, dip in beaten egg drench in flour both sides-sprinkle your favorite seasonings and salt on while frying

I used gluten free flour you can use your favorite baking flour

I used gluten free flour you can use your favorite baking flour

 

Fry until brown on each side in butter-add more if it gets dry on the pan

Fry until brown on each side in butter-add more if it gets dry on the pan

 

I fried them on high and kinda forgot about them for a few min's-they were still delicious! Make a yummy sauce or dressing  to go on top. I use different dressings all the time. This time I made a topping out of curds, fresh herbs and pickled garlic. Served on top of organic greens and veg's

I fried them on high and kinda forgot about them for a few min’s-they were still delicious! Make a yummy sauce or dressing to go on top. I use different dressings all the time. This time I made a topping out of curds, fresh herbs and pickled garlic. Served on top of organic greens and veg’s

Spaghetti squash green beans below

Spaghetti squash hanging over fence with morning glories

Green beans line the inside of our barn yard

Green beans line the inside of our barn yard. Yep that’s the spaghetti squash you see on the fence. The squash is planted on the other side of the fenced in garden

 

Another wild fruit growing on the farm in the fall-Autumn Olives. They are the size of a currant and the taste- a cross between a currant and a tart cherry. VERY healthy to eat. God grew it them for us, we didn't plant them ourselves.

Another wild fruit growing on our farm in the fall-Autumn Olives. They are the size of a currant and the taste is a cross between a currant and a tart cherry. VERY healthy to eat. God grew them for us, we didn’t plant them. You can eat them raw,  cook them in jams, jellies, pies, sauces or make wine with them.

Growing right next to our Mulberry tree-The Autumn Olive bush

Growing right next to our Mulberry tree-The Autumn Olive bush

Grapes: Typically we get gallons and gallons of grapes from our vines but this year we didn’t get as much as usual. We didn’t take care of them the way we should have either. That makes a huge difference in the harvest. Two things I typically make with our grapes; new wine fermented with whey and yeast bread from the pulp. Here is a video of me preparing pulp to make yeast bread from pulp. 

Natural Yeast Bread

2 cups unwashed organic grapes, processed to pulp- the light powdery coating on the grapes is what is needed to make the yeast. Don’t wash off!!

11  cups ground organic flour (you can use wheat, spelt, rye or any combination-you can even use sprouted grain flours)

1 tablespoon sea salt

filtered water

Starter:

Place 2 cups grape pulp and 2 cups ground flour in clean bowl. Mix well and cover with cheesecloth secured with a large rubber band. Let sit. On day two add 1 cup flour and 1 cup filtered water. Mix well, cover and let sit in warm place. On day three, transfer to clean bowl and add 1 cup flour and 1 cup of filtered water. Cover and let sit in warm place until starter gets frothy and subsides. You should have around 5 cups. Use 4 cups to make bread and save one cup for future bread batches.

Natural Yeast Bread

7 cups flour

4 cups starter

1 tablespoon salt

1 1/2 cup filtered water

Mix well. Cover and let rise in warm place for at least 12 hours. Bake at 300 degrees for about 1 1/2 hours. Oh my goodness, this is delicious. I also use this same recipe for making gluten free yeast bread, I just use gluten free flours.

This is just two of the many loaves I made-the one on the left is gluten free, the one on the right is made from a organic sprouted wheat and spelt grains. The color will vary depending on what kind of flour you use

This is just two of the many loaves I made-the one on the left is gluten free, the one on the right is made from an organic sprouted wheat and spelt grains. The color will vary depending on what kind of flour you use.

Leave a comment below telling me what you wish you had growing on your property.  I’ll draw a winner from the batch next week and send a root, seed or tree from our farm. We’ve got Milk Thistle seeds, Fig root, Autumn Olive root, baby Mulberry tree, Lilac root, Sunflower seeds, Elderberry tree root. . .all organic of course. I’ll have to check and see if we have sprouting pear trees(baby).

Proverbs 28:19 “Those who work their land will have abundant food,
but those who chase fantasies will have their fill of poverty.”