I’ve been decorating for fall since before my phone flipped.
I love it.
My favorite part is shopping the yard.
I cut leaves from the trees and branches from the bushes and pile up pinecones in a wheelbarrow and cut corn stalks from the field across from my house.
All that fall.
All that free.
It’s like nature just wanted my house to be extra cute this time of year. I’m all about the real just outside my window. Real bushes and branches and corn stalks and boxwood and magnolia trump faux any time.
Except for the one thing I’ll never shop the yard for again—the day I learned how NOT to decorate for fall.
Several years ago, I decorated the dining room for fall.
The room needed a little festive because friends were coming over later that week for hot dog pot pie and monopoly.
I pulled down two giant glass cylindrical vases and started where all great fall decorating starts….
I cut giant branches of beautiful fall leaves and spindly twigs and tiny evergreen cuttings with the pinecones still attached.
Finally, my wheelbarrow full. I lugged it all into the house and filled those cylindrical vases with the tall branches.
But something was missing.
Something wasn’t exactly right. The branches kind of fell over to one side and twisted this way and that way and the whole thing looked a little painful.looked like they were trying to escape from the fall table.
Like the twigs were embarrassed to be seen hanging out with the pinecones.
That’s when the brilliant idea struck.
Acorns would be perfect.
I ran out and gathered tons upon tons of acorns and dumped them into the glass jars.
It was a fall miracle. The branches stood up perfectly. The twigs gracefully dipped here and there. The evergreen springs wrapped themselves around the edges of the vase in a fall symphony of perfection.
I was literally the best fall decorator on the planet.
For a week my dining room shone.
The day of the party finally arrived. I pulled out the monogrammed dishes, dusted off the monopoly game and bought bags of lemons for the sweet tea.
Everything was ready.
Everything was set.
The party was going to be perfect.
And then, as I lined up the silverware on the table, out of the corner of my eye I saw something move in the glass vase.
What was that? Did an acorn shift? Did I bump the branches?
I blinked and looked again. And then?
And ran from the room as fast as my purple toenails could take me.
IT WAS AWFUL.
Wildly, I hopped around with my hands waving and yelled for my husband to help.
THAT CENTERPIECE HAD TO GO.
I can’t even type what I saw.
I can’t even begin to describe what was in that vase.
I still haven’t even recovered.
All I know is that tiny little white worms had taken over my acorns and were throwing a party RIGHT THERE ON THE MIDDLE OF MY DINING ROOM TABLE.
The centerpiece was gone in 2.8 seconds.
I spent the next 30 minutes bleaching and disinfecting and trying to pretend like those acorns had never been there.
I learned my lesson that day.
Branches? They are my BFF.
Pinecones? I’d invite them to a party.
Twigs? I’d open the door if they knocked.
But acorns? From the yard? Filling a glass vase? In my dining room?
I never, ever, ever want to be friends again. 🙂
PS This is a centerpiece I created for the dining room.
Please notice there’s not an acorn in sight. 🙂
PPS I wanted to announce the winners of the Linky Party link up.
First prize winner: Patti from Old Things New.
Second prize winner: Melissa from Brown Dog Vintage.