“Let that be a lesson to you.”

Wednesday, October 31 — Halloween at our home in southern Arizona

My neighbor tells me there used to be hay rides through the neighborhood on Halloween. (We’re having another chat over the chain link fence.)

“There’d be seventy kids or more on those rides,” he recalls, smiling at the memory.

“Oh, really?”

I have my own happy memories of hay rides.

He adds . . . “until one fell off and got hurt, so they shut that down.”

That’s the way it goes these days.

Used to be, if a kid wasn’t careful and had an accident, parents would shrug and admonish their horrified children, “Let that be a lesson to you,” and we’d still be allowed to do whatever it was that sent That Kid Who Wasn’t Careful to the emergency ward.

Today we’re all about antiseptic band-aids.  Wow.  When I was a kid, we didn’t have band-aids of any kind in our house.  If I got a boo-boo, my mother would tell me to spit on it and call it better.

And, gosh, most of the time it worked!

Remember the big playground swings with the grey metal pipe pointing to the sky?  Those heavy swing seats made of hard wood that hung from long CHAINS?  Iron chains, I think they were.

Periodically some kid would push that swing seat as hard as he or she could and stand there stupefied as the plank of wood swung waaaaay out and up, paused as if reconsidering, and then came swooping back down with a vengeance to knock the kid smack in the teeth.

Oh, we learned our lessons.  

We learned important stuff.

We learned to pay attention because the road of life is going to bounce you, and, if you aren’t holding on to something, you might just fall out of your happy hay wagon.

We learned to spit on our wounds, believe they will get better, and resume play.

We learned when we push we’d better be prepared to get a push back.

~ ~ ~

The only Halloween-ers in costume I saw this season were the adults down at the thrift shop. The adult-sized costumes had been flying off the racks all week.

Let me pause to point out a distinction:  A witch and Spider Man in a child’s size 4 can be cute.  In size adult’s extra large?

Not so cute.  Too real.

Anyway . . . 

I appreciate the effort.  I don’t understand it, but I realize everyone has their own, personal idea of what’s fun.

At the thrift shop the mood is festive with a bit of the usual, bargain-crazed edginess.  I’m feeling pretty festive myself, having found a nifty planter buried in the dark, nether region of the shop.  In times past the planter was a swan.  Now it’s a dirty, moldy “ugly duckling.”

I’m feeling smug as I set my prize on the counter and hand over three dollars.  

Hmpff!  Other thrift shoppers (less astute than I) rejected this planter, but not me . . . 

I see potential!

I take the planter home and give it a hearty scrubbing with a Brillo pad, rinsing her off with the backyard hose.

I pop a pot of lantana between her wings and set her in a place of honor overseeing the flower bed.

Oh, isn’t she lovely!

My original plan on the way home from the thrift store was to spray paint her black, maybe be trendy and “distress” the paint to give a weathered look.  

Who am I kidding?  Me?  Trendy?  I like her best the way you see her here, clean and pretty, as she was meant to be. 

~ ~ ~


A poem:  “The Swan”

This laboring of ours with all that remains undone,
as if still bound to it,
is like the lumbering gait of the swan.

And then our dying—releasing ourselves
from the very ground on which we stood—
is like the way he hesitantly lowers himself
into the water.

It gently receives him,
and, gladly yielding, flows back beneath him,
as wave follows wave,
while he, now wholly serene and sure,
with regal composure,
allows himself to glide.

— Poem by Rainer Maria Rilke, translation by Joanna Macy and Anita Barrows

~ ~ ~

I forgot to answer the questions burning in your mind.

No, we didn’t have any trick-or-treaters, and, no, I didn’t turn off all the lights and hide in a back room.

These days parents take their children to alternative programs in town or at their church. No more traipsing up and down streets with their little, costumed creatures.  No more chauffeuring their precious offspring to the doors of strangers.

Apparently the trick-or-treat custom has gone the way of hay rides and monster swings that draw blood.  At least in our neighborhood anyway.

Not one trick-or-treater.  I had to eat the bag of Twix miniatures all by myself.


NOTE:   The next post will be on a completely different topic and there will be more photos.   I promise.  — Sue


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Thank you for using any of the links above to shop Amazon from my blog. I appreciate that. –Sue

~ ~ ~

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77 Responses to “Let that be a lesson to you.”

  1. Sue says:

    Love your swan —

    I’m curious about the color of the paint you used in your bedroom.
    You said it wasn’t very attractive when looking at the paint swatch, but was beautiful on the wall,
    I’m wanting to paint my bedroom a light blue. The lady at the paint store recommended a gray. She said it’s a light blueish gray.

    • rvsueandcrew says:


      Gray is the big thing now. I’m not crazy about gray and can’t help you on the “light blueish gray” decision.

      At first I liked the gray paint in my bedroom, but over time I saw that it is a little too dark because one of the two windows faces the covered patio. I’m going to repaint it eventually.

      I wish I could be helpful. Good luck with your decision!

  2. bess in oregon says:

    hi Sue! i love the swan just as she (?) is. graceful and lovely in pink. i am happy you are enjoying your home and the boys are happy too. bess

  3. Jim in Alabama says:

    “Not one trick-or-treater. I had to eat the bag of Twix miniatures all by myself.”

    Life is really tough isn’t it.

    I’m mostly a lurker but have enjoyed your blog since the beginning. 🙂

    • Roger Fell, Wetaskiwin, Alberta says:

      I buy every year for the trick or treaters that never come. It’s about the only time we have chocolate in the house!

  4. Rachel says:

    I like the swan that you found at the thrift store, and I like it just the way it is! 🙂 I particularly like that poem about the swan. It’s such a commentary on life isn’t it? We kind of bumble our way through life, and then finally, at the end, when death receives us, we can gently glide away, to a life everlasting. Beautiful!

  5. Joyce F in Kansas says:

    We didn’t get trick or treaters either, a mile from the city limits. I did buy a bag of Three Musketteers and a bag of Snickers just in case. A treat for hubby (TM) and myself (S).

    I like the swan just the way it is.

    • Elaine Magliacane says:

      My husband likes the new Almond Snickers, it’s 3 Musketteers for me 🙂

      • Barbara (Nashville) says:

        I love almost all candies except gummy bears. My favorite Snickers are the Peanut Butter ones. We have a lot more kids in our neighborhood this year so I bought 4 bags. Not on tricker-treater So we will have out one snack bar every day.

  6. I bought planters too!! Going shopping for plants today & potting soil. I’ll transplant a couple to bigger pots. Loving the weather!!!

  7. ReneeG from Idaho says:

    Hi Sue! Great to see another story! I always love to read them, makes my day, well almost, but you know what I mean. Going home from work after a long day makes my day, followed closely by a cold beer at the end of that long day if it’s a Friday night! Ha!

    I too like the swan as it is. I think if you would’ve spray painted it black it would’ve been an ugly duckling all grown up!

    We got 49 trick or treater’s all so cute and the older kids were very polite.

  8. Gary Wood says:

    Always nice to read your philosophy of life’s little pleasures. I too experienced a similar childhood. Simplistic, but fun. Enjoy the holidays…

  9. Suzicruzi says:

    Hi Sue,
    Just wanted to touch base as we hit the road in a few days. The weather has turned and we’ll get caught in some cold nights! You mentioned earlier that you put reflectix in the window by your head when you slept at night. May I pick your brains and ask what held it in place? Thanks!!

    I really like the Lantana in your swan planter find! Yippee!!!

    Hugs, Suzi, Larry, and Kitty

    • Marcia GB in MA says:

      I just want to offer our solution to putting up reflecting. We cut ours larger than the window and put sticky-backed pieces of Velcro on it. It adhered well to the wall carpeting and was easy to take off, too.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Suzi, Larry, and Kitty,

      To put Reflectix on the BLT’s windows, I cut pieces larger than the window glass and pinned the Reflectix in place with T-pins pushed into the carpeted walls. I liked this method because I could remove a pin or two, fold back part of the Reflectix, and pin it in place, whenever I wanted to let in light or look out.

      CASITA OWNERS: T-pins are must-haves, along with drapery hooks, for hanging or holding stuff on the carpeted walls.

      T-Pins, 9/16 in. Head Width, 2 in. Length, 100 in a box

      Drapery/curtain hooks come in different sizes. This size works: 58 Pcs Metal Curtain Hooks

      • Suzicruzi says:

        Thank You Sue. The thought crossed my mind to use the pins. Also Velcro like Marcia suggested. Worried that Velcro over time will make the carpet “fuzzy” in those areas. Looking forward to getting from Portland to Susanville, then South from there to Joshua without freezing our butts off in the wee hours. : )

        We are watching the WX closely, knowing things can change at any time. I think we’ll lay over somewhere around Lone Pine, CA. It’s such a nice area and doesn’t look to be terribly cold yet.
        Appreciate the suggestions!!

  10. Nice swan, she looks in the pink to me. No trick or treaters in my neighborhood either, been living here since 1998 and so far no a single one. There are only 2 houses on my street that have children, and only 1 of those has little children the other has teenagers… but those kids didn’t trick or treat here. I did get behind a lady in line at the Walmart buying a costume for her son (the only thing she bought) it was $32, I was stunned it was so expensive. My mother made our costumes most of the time if that’s how expensive costumes are I know why she did that.

  11. Elizabeth says:

    You make good points as to how it used to be, Sue. I do feel it was a safer time in our day, however…so we had way more freedoms to wander quite a ways from home…and all we had to fear was the occasional bully, which was rare too. There are ways I feel my mom was a bit too lax with our care…but she was an only child, so probably was not aware of some things. I was more careful with our kids than I would have been, if we had lived in a bit safer area, though it was better than some places evenso.
    We do not live where there are houses close enough for trick or treaters…but we do not consider it our holiday either so yes, we did keep the front of our place dark (in part because of no young children anywhere near…so it would have been adults if anyone). But we keep some snack bars on hand at all times, so would have given that to anyone knocking. It was also rainy here…which no doubt kept some home.
    I think your swan matches the area you have it in, quite well. Nice touch! Love thrifting too!!

  12. Alice says:

    Really love the planter, so glad you didn’t paint it. Boys look good, as always

  13. leilani says:

    The first year I moved into my house was right before Halloween & I wasn’t ready. I’d forgotten to buy candy so, yep, I actually did turn out all the lights & I hid in the back. Not one trick or treater rang. Turns out, I needn’t have hidden, the kids around here have an elaborate haunted park celebration to go to instead.

    So here it is years later and – just in case – I still buy candy every year (well, I buy the mixed bag of fun sized bars & eat all the dark chocolate Milky Way Midnights that I’ve fished out for myself first) & of course the kiddos still don’t come. I have bags full of snickers, twix & whatever else comes with the long-gone MW Midnights in the mixed bags stuffed in my pantry.

    You’d think, after all this time, that I’d let that be a lesson to me, as Mrs. RvSue’sMom might say, but nooooo. I’ll probably keep buying just-in-case candy for kids that don’t come rather than just buy a couple of adult-sized dark chocolate Milky Ways for myself.

    [Too bad I can’t spit on the extra pounds I always put on this time of year to make my jeans fit better. ;-)]

  14. Cat lady in tacoma says:

    Great post sue, I love your swan!
    I love decorating the house and going full Halloween mode. In my neighborhood even with persistent rain we had 65 trick or treaters at the door!! I love seeing all the fun costumes! One little girl did confess she came back a second time because she really wanted a second rice crispy treat hehe. That’s something I can understand!

  15. Pat in Rochester says:

    I read “I pop a pot of lasagna between her wings ….” Then I reread. Ok, Sue is still sane.

    We had plenty of kids at the door. In fact, I ended up turning out the lights and pulling the blinds for the first time ever. Lots of kids around here, including my almost 9 year old witch. I talked her out of being a zombie clown, and fortunately she was quite pleased with the witch costume I created for her. I LOVE making costumes and feel lucky to have another generation upon which to foist my creations. Plus, she is very generous with her haul, even giving me pieces that I know she herself loves.

  16. Marlene says:

    Hi Sue, Marlene from Idaho here, I love your planter, what a find, I remember those from my childhood days. Boy, am I glad you are back. I am still planning on selling this place, but up in the air a bit about what I want to do next, I think so many options at age 71 can be confusing. I feel like a kid in a candy store. This week I sold my entertainment center and media cabinet. Funny how all those movies and cd’s can fit into three hand-held disc cases. Here I have been moving those cabinets for years to clean behind them. Finally gave up the last couple of years. Your loveseat looks cozy and from what I can tell it looks like new, good find. Don’t you love it when a plan comes together even if it’s not what you started off with? Have a happy day, Marlene

  17. Pam and Maya in Ajo for the winter! says:

    Hi Sue and Crew! I spent Halloween in a Boondock outside of Tucson, so no trick or treaters. I was tempted to buy a bag of Reese’s peanut butter cups just in case and am glad I didn’t.😇 I’m glad you left the swan pink, she is lovely with her flowers! I loved my childhood, boy did we have adventures that would have made my mother’s hair stand on end! Funny thing, when I had my own son I was a total worry wart, probably remembering the stuff I survived through.

  18. Susan in Phoenix says:

    Welcome to Arizona. Lantana are about the only plant you can depend on.

  19. Marilyn back in Dania Beach and loving the warm weather says:

    It pays to purchase your favorite candy to dole at Halloween. Left overs are for you.

    Twix is my favorite.

  20. Diann in MT says:

    Oh, Sue, what a graceful and beautiful tribute to salvaged swan planters. You have great taste and luck, if you ask me.
    We get about 30 trick or treaters here every year and there are groupie activities for them, too. Had some candy left which is always a sad face to me. Can’t eat sugar at all.
    Anyway. I am sooo glad the swan and you were matched up. She is an awesome addition to your backyard, I’ll bet.

  21. S. Kaeseman says:

    No matter the subject, please keep blogging Sue, we love to read about everything.
    Thanks for all you and the crew do for us.
    S. Kaeseman

  22. Linda in Minnesota says:

    When I was a child we had a Halloween party at our church that was for all members. We would go in as ones or twos so people couldn’t tell who we were by our group. There was a big circle of chairs and we entered silently and took a seat. Once people stopped coming in we tried to guess who each other was. It was much harder than you would think since we knew one another so well. (I was a third generation member of that church but grandparents didn’t come to the party–just parents and kids.) I don’t think there were any costumes there that weren’t homemade. It’s one of my great childhood memories.

  23. Linda in Minnesota says:

    Remembering the freedom of childhood reminds me of the year my oldest brother wound up in the hospital three times. Once for tonsillitis, once for a bicycle accident, and once for a tennis injury. I was jealous of all the attention he got that year.

    For skinned knees I remember mercurochrome.

  24. Suzette in TN says:

    We live in a kid-intense neighborhood, so we have quite a few trick-or-treaters every year. But, it rained bucketfulls this Halloween, and only the bravehearts came out. We are stuck with bags and bags of candy. The good stuff. The stuff you can’t keep your hands out of. It’s now in the trunk of my car. My evil plan is to dole it out to my coworkers over the next few weeks/months. There’s a lot of candy in my car! 🙂 Love the swan! And I love the way she cleaned up. No spray paint needed. She’s beautiful. Happy November, Sue. Can you believe this year is nearly over!?

  25. Dawn in Michigan says:

    No trick or treaters here either, but we haven’t had any kids in the neighborhood in years. I suppose someday that will change as us older people move on and new families with kids move in. Still, every year we buy one bag of candy and eat the whole thing ourselves.

    Your swan is lovely. Isn’t it fun to find a treasure once in awhile!

  26. Bess in Oregon says:

    hi Sue,
    I wanted to let you know that Barry and I will be using your Rilke poem in our training materials for hospice volunteers. We teach a class which is has a focus on educating people of the various world religion’s approach to death and dying, including a fun session discussing the myriad afterlife beliefs.

    We foster empathy, acceptance, and sharing. This poem is very evocative of the beliefs of a majority of people in our classes and the image of the swan is so appropriate for the beauty of accepting the fullness of life. It also reminds us that what you see on the surface at first glance is not always what is going on under the surface. Gliding on the surface of the water seems effortless but requires the paddling of the feet to go somewhere!
    Thank you Sue!

  27. Rick & Brock the dog says:

    Oh my, you are so right about how much things have changed. The wild stuff we used to do just isn’t allowed now. I learned a lot from getting injured as a kid. Gave me something to think about and scars to show later in life.

  28. Pat McClain says:

    When I was a T and T’er, we would stay out til midnight so long as porch lights were on. It was usually down to 3 or 4 by midnight. I’ve been in this house for 15 years and have never had a trick or treater.

  29. Columbus Calvin says:

    Sue, you made a real find in that swan! Please don’t “fix” it. It’s very pretty.

    The “building manager” here was telling me a few days ago how many activities her grandkids were doing for the holiday. That sounds like more fun than I ever had trick-or-treating, but then there’s a personal factor there. I’m probably the only person I know my age (61) that doesn’t have a complaint about the safety improvements since I was a child. Maybe that’s because I saw too many injuries, or maybe because I had an unhappy childhood and the entire “good old days” idea pretty much eludes me. My days are far better now than then. My grandkids still take plenty of chances, and they’re pretty much the same ones I took.

    My own holiday is not the same as Halloween, and I spent it doing clergy things. To be honest, I completely forgot about trick-or-treaters. We don’t get any here anyhow. We have a busy street and no sidewalks, so I wouldn’t want them taking that risk.

  30. Denise - Richmond VA says:

    Hi, Sue,

    I loved your description of the type of Halloween that most of us were fortunate to experience. I would take my younger sisters with me through our neighborhood, but soon they tired. They had a bag full of candy and were happy to be dropped back home. A friend a couple doors down would then join me and we would trick or treat literally miles away from home. We would make a huge circle, walking to visit homes in multiple neighborhoods. Never had flashlights, and our folks never asked where we had been. But…we had a butt load of common sense. Cold weather or a little rain did not deter us. One year, it was lightly snowing – so magical!

    It is a shame that the last few generations of kids have been over-protected and coddled.

    I know it was absolute torture to eat the whole bag of Twix. It had to be done, though….you had to ensure that the boys did not get into the chocolate, which can be deadly. Anything for the zoom-zoom brothers! 🙂

    The pink swan planter is lovely! She was neglected for a long time. A little love and elbow grease brought her beauty back. 🙂

    I hope you have a good evening and wonderful weekend, Sue! The leave color is at its peak this week. When I got home from work tonight, I parked the car and sat for a few minutes just to enjoy the view of the many textures and colors of my backyard. Sending you, Reggie, and Roger lots of love and hugs from me and Gracie pup! 🙂 xo

  31. Denise - Richmond VA says:

    Shout out to AZ Jim and his lovely wife Detta! You have been in my thoughts. **hugs** 🙂

  32. The swan is very “pretty in pink.” My spouse has a knack for finding items that just need a little elbow grease and perhaps some spray paint to make them look like new. He specializes in Coleman camping gear such as stoves and lanterns and likes to find old Weber table top BBQs to fix up as they are much better than the new ones.

    We have a few kids but usually elect to go out to dinner instead. This year we bought a bit of candy (that I like) for the neighbor kids, and once they claimed their treasure, we called it a night and I squirreled away the rest of the peanut butter cups.

  33. Jan NH says:

    I just love ‘seeing potential’ and and you found a prize potential with just a little elbow grease and water! She looks brand new…great find!

    LOL on having to eat the bag of Twix. After my first couple of years in this house of buying candy, only to have to eat it myself, I now shut off the lights and hide in the dark…well not really hide but if the outside lights are out, it means ‘not participating’ just in case a stray child stopped by. I don’t want the candy in the house :).

    I’m not big on Halloween or decorations (folks these days seem to decorate as much for Halloween as the do for Christmas with lights and all. I do love Christmas and related holiday decorations but geez, they just seem to be starting earlier and earlier each year.

  34. Kitt NW, WA says:

    Hi, Sue,
    I love your beautiful swan! Nice to see below the surface to the beauty below. Now there’s a lesson for all.
    Yep, I grew up in a town that had a magnificent playground with all kinds of “dangerous” equipment. We had a blast playing there. We must have approached it with due caution as I recall no serious injuries, just normal scrapes, bumps, and bruises.
    No trick or treaters here – too far out in the county.

  35. Rover Ronda says:

    I enjoy reading your writing whatever the topic. I too had no trick or treaters and I’m left with Twix.😃 They’re not my favorite, I chose them so I wouldn’t be tempted to eat them beforehand. Now they’re going in my husband’s lunches.

  36. A gal in Maple Valley, WA says:

    Greetings Sue and “rinos

    There was a discussion awhile back on the best toilet paper for RVs and septic systems. Here is an easy test: take one sheet of tp and put it in a container of water with a lid. Shake it a few times. If it disintegrates to pulp, that type/brand is just fine.

    As mentioned above, free is always good. I brought many treasures home using this tip: a few days before and after the first of the month, I cruised some of the really nice apartments’ complex disposal areas. Many folks leave behind items they can’t/won’t take with them to their new homes and others will jettison items they find won’t/don’t work for them once there. Just standing by the recycle/trash bins. Back your van up and just tip them in. Managers are glad they won’t have to pay hauling overages. Most things are good to go. Some need personalizing. Other will only need some beautiful fabric draped on them.

    It’s wonderful to visualize the multitude of folks that, because of you, have pared down for traveling and donated items for us to hunt down and bring home to be loved.

    Happy hunting!

  37. Rob says:

    When I buy Halloween candy, I buy candy that I like!

  38. CherylinTheLowerThumbofMI says:

    You mean to say, you DIDN’T put costumes on Reggie & Roger to parade around your neighborhood? LOL! I wouldn’t be caught DEAD doing that to my dogs. Hope all your upcoming weeks & week-ends to come are full of fun & great adventures for all three of you. Please keep us updated!

    Love, Cheryl

  39. Cat Lady in Baton Rouge, La. says:

    We were country kids and when we got a cut, the dog would lick that spot. In a couple of days, it was all healed up with no scaring. Dogs ate table scraps. I don’t remember ever seeing dry dog/cat food…maybe that’s something relatively new. In any case, we couldn’t have afforded it. We were all por (Southern for really poor, money strapped) but didn’t know it ‘cause our neighbors were in the same fix. But we were carefree and happy. At Halloween time, the sweet little old widow down the street, that everyone loved and looked after, would make popcorn balls for all the neighborhood kids. Boy, were they good. Sixty plus years later I can still almost taste them. Parents didn’t go with us because the other parents had their porch lights on and stood out in the street watching our progress going house to house in the neighborhood until we got back to our homes. All the parents looked after all the kids, not just their own. If we did something wrong, the other parents would correct us and our parents appreciated it. Good times. Would not work now…too much PC and lawyers wanting to sue.

    • mary batt says:

      Pop Corn balls!!!! Yes!! Our mom would drive us 1 mile down to the ‘village’ so we could walk house to house (there was only 1 honest “city block”). And the Isabel and Leon W. ALWAYS had a production line for pop corn balls! Kids would line up from the sidewalk, up the stairs, along the side porch, into their kitchen, around the center table, past the stove, pick up their pop corn ball, and exit the kitchen, porch, and stairs to the next house. 55-60 years ago. When I last saw them about 18 years ago, they joked that they would start ‘laying in the corn’ for halloween! I had no idea at that time that I was in a true American treasure and time. How lucky I was! And it was nice to hear you reminisce. Very nice to know someone else knew people that would make pop corn balls for the kids! So “Thanks” goes to people that are nice to kids!

      And Sue I love the Swan…perfect for a garden! Her previous owner is happy, too!!

  40. Eileen says:

    Your post brought back happy childhood playtime memories. Yes, it’s a shame that the hayrides had to end because of attitudes/actions of today’s society.

    I think your swan is a beauty in its original condition; haven’t read anything by Rilke in a very long time, so thanks for sharing the poem.

    Regarding that Halloween candy you now have to eat, I’ll repeat the old adage “It’s a lousy job, but somebody’s gotta do it!” Enjoy!…lol…

  41. Sharon Romano Coquet says:

    Thank you Sue for bring back good memories. I think us parents just want the best and safest for our kids. Mine are almost 50. But your right life is not easy and by not allowing our kids to learn the hard way it makes it just that much harder for them when they venture out in this world. That not every one wins awards. They are rightly earned and it’s hard work that wins in the end.
    Thank you for you and being able to laugh at you. Your great.

    Always reading what ever you write. Sharon

  42. Suzi says:

    Hi All, I’ve been up early these past days as we are excited about finally getting on our way again. Your comments made me reflect on days of youth in Kailau, and trick or treating. It was always warm and we were often barefoot as we usually were in those days. We lived in a big kid friendly neighborhood, so it was a very busy and fun night!

    Rusty, are you out there? Sue, hows Rusty? I miss his comments. If you talk to him, please tell him I was checking in on he and Lady Piper.

    Hope all’s well in Blogerinoland,

  43. Geri from FL Panhandle says:

    No trick or treaters here either. We live just outside of town and this is an adult RV park so no kids trick or treaters here. Hurricane Michael did some damage here, but nothing like Mexico Beach or Panama City, but there is still a lot of trash picked up waiting on the roadside for pickup. So Apalachicola had a great idea of holding a trunk party at the city park downtown next to the beautiful Apalachicola River! Everybody parked their vehicles in the park and opened up the trunks! Quite a few folk has even decorated their trunks in scary Halloween decor! The kids had a ball and were safe from hurricane debris. Everybody had so much fun, they are talking about doing it every Halloween!

    I love your pink swan, please leave it pink! So glad y’all have found a place to settle between road tripping. You second had finds are great! The love seat was a real find!

    Those tablets that are on sale are really a great 👍 buy! Chuck and I each bought one 2 years ago. We almost never use our laptops anymore! 💗 The tablets do everything our laptops did but the best part is we can curl up in our comfy chairs like I am doing now. I could never do this with the laptop! Good deal too. We paid a bit more for our tablets 2 years ago! These even come with much better tools installed !

    Love you Sue, hug Reggie and Roger from us!

    • Jan NH says:

      Love the creativeness of the ‘trunk’ party for the kids! What a great idea!

    • Denise - Richmond VA says:

      Hi, Geri and Chuck,

      I love the Halloween trunk party idea! A new, fun, happy tradition! Bet it was just as much fun for the grownups to see how folks decorated their trunks. I hope you both are doing well! 🙂

  44. Terri in Tx., for now says:

    I remember skateboarding on my homemade skateboard down the sidewalk in my neighborhood. I fell off in the neighbors cactus garden. Skinned up both knees and elbows. Walked home so mom could pull the cactus spines out. We had “monkey blood” to put on the wounds, but had to wait for Dad to get home with Band-Aids. My Dad owned a drugstore and was a pharmacist. We hardly ever had drugs, etc. in the house. Yeah, trick or treating was a blast! This year hubby and I bought candy corn and watched the movie Duel- an oldie but goodie which was Steven Spielberg’s first full length movie he directed. Very very spooky and suspenseful! Glad everyone had a good Halloween! Now we gotta get ready for Thanksgiving!

  45. weather says:

    A friend brought his daughter and other children on a hay wagon when they came to our home each Halloween until she was ten years old in 2011. I still buy some candy in case little ones come here, yet none have since then. I choose the kind I know friends like and give it to them afterwards, because I can’t resist eating it and never could.

    My parents only had to take me to a doctor for a head wound once. They did keep supplies to bandage burns, cuts, scrapes and sprains I had on a regular basis, though. I was a wild child, and have eight scars that show getting hurt didn’t teach me to be cautious. My father put one of those swings you described in our yard, along with a merry-go-round I once mentioned. Smart and considerate move on his part- those were some of the safest activities I enjoyed.

    Your swan is beautiful, you really do have a talent for finding treasures. I love Brillo pads, what a great invention! Amazon is currently selling the 32 -count package of them for only $12.99 🙂 . A lot of my home’s furnishings have been distressed by age, it’s funny that people buy new things and try to make them old.

  46. Georgette says:

    Time have certainly changed.

    I’m 70 years old this year, and can remember that as a child most of the kids in the neighborhood would get together and play most of the day when there wasn’t school, even playing “hide and seek” until well after dark, until our mothers called us in.

    That would be about the first time that day she would see us, or know where we were.

    Television was new then, our family was the first on the block to have a TV (probably because my Dad worked in television – as a technician, nor as a performer). Everyone would come over to see what TV “was all about”.

    No Saturday morning cartoons for us – no one else on our block had a TV yet, so all the kids were out playing with each other in the neighborhood.

    I remember that when I was 8 (yes, eight!) years old, I got together with my best friend, Susan Shupe, who lived two doors down, and planned an adventure.

    Our Mom’s gave us the money to get on the bus, ride across town (this was in a suburb of *Los Angeles*, the San Fernando Valley) to visit the local shopping center. We spent a couple of hours there window shopping, had a soda, then caught the bus back to our original bus stop, and then walked to two or three blocks from the bus stop back to home.

    Can you imagine it?! Two little girls, both eight years old, out for an adventure.

    Never happen today. 🙁

  47. Denise - Richmond VA says:

    Hello, all!

    I hope everyone is enjoying their weekend! Stopped in at Joann Fabrics this afternoon. The store was a bit of a mess as they were trying to clear out the Fall & Halloween items to make way for Christmas stock. For those that “cannot wait” for Black Friday deals, they will be releasing some of those specials starting next week (!).

    Methinks this is just another marketing ploy to boost holiday sales. For goodness sakes! The carved pumpkins have not even started to decompose yet! Anyhoo, I picked up some sewing machine needles, quilt batting, and thread. Things that I needed and were on sale. I had no desire to even glimpse at Christmas items – looking forward to enjoying Thanksgiving first! 🙂

    Have a good evening! 🙂

  48. Nivrapa in AZ says:

    Howdy Everybody!

    Halloween is not something I look forward to each year. There are two reasons that contribute to my feelings for Halloween. I grew up in a area of PA with strong religious influences from the Amish and Mennonite communities. The holiday of Halloween was seen more as demonic worship with a camouflage of strange, scarey costumes and the unorthodox activity of roaming around after dark. Rather, there was a celebration of Fall and the harvest. We welcomed the changing leaf color, arrival of crisp cold mornings, and the bounty from our “produce patch”. Church always had Harvest Home Sunday where donations of home canned goods were collected were accepted and then delivered to those less fortunate and in need or to the “old folks’ home” to enhance their meals. Dried corn shocks, mums, and pumpkins were used to add even more color to the display of home canned food. I remember that some years the overall effect quite impressive. Imagine a collection of food for those in need that didn’t include any processed food (the forerunner of our modern day food banks, no doubt). Days gone by, for sure!

    The second reason for my apathy toward Halloween is that living on a rural farm we didn’t exactly have neighbors close by. We were miles from town. We could see our closest neighbors wa-a-ay over there across the fields but it wasn’t exactly an easy walk, especially after dark. And so Trick or Treating was not something farm kids routinely did. Instead we went for hay rides, enjoyed a raging bonfire, roasted hot dogs and then marsh mellows, and had straw fights on the eve of Harvest Home at church. All of this was heavily supervised by adults but we managed to have a good time anyway.

    Living on country farm that barely provided for the family, I grew up with only the necessities of life, isolated and sheltered from worldly activities as a result of our rural location. Halloween was just not something that had any value to my family and so it was never recognized. What I lacked in socialization and “street smarts” I made up for with firm family values, strong work ethics, and great appreciation for nature and her gifts. I think that I turned out just fine without celebrations of Halloween in my life and I certainly don’t think lesser of those that enjoy the day.

    Just thought I’d take a walk down the memory lane of Halloween and share a different perspective. My parents made large deposits to my memory bank without even knowing it. If the trip opened the memory bank of anyone else, I hope you get to experience only warmth from your vault of memories and you find yourself smiling.—Audrey

    • Denise - Richmond VA says:


    • Elizabeth says:

      Interesting Audrey…over the years hubby and I have studied in great depth about many things, including the origins and meaning behind a lot of customs accepted in our culture. It has changed our life…and some of the things we do…or no longer do in some cases. We are fortunate today to be able to research rather easily today…though we must use numerous sources to be sure of conclusions. In some neighborhoods we lived in, even though we no longer did Halloween, we definitely gave out candy…twas better than whatever damage might come to our property. Rather chicken way to do things I suppose…but we did all we could to keep peace…

  49. Marlene says:

    No trick-or-treaters this year on my street either. I had to go out to the store and no trick-or-treaters to be seen anywhere. The next day reports on the news of needles found in candy. So sad. Wish I knew what the cure would be to heal the sick in our population.
    On a positive note, glad you didn’t paint that beautiful swan. And, I’m glad you rescued it.

  50. Barbara (Nashville) says:

    Love the pink swan planter. Glad you decided t leave is pink, so pretty.

    The kitchen is almost finished. Just waiting on countertops, which will hopefully be installed on Tuesday and new appliances on Saturday. Had decided to forego the flooring and get new appliances, since the microwave & D/W are dead. Emergency refer purchase of a few years ago was way too small, so it needed replacing too. Only thing left was the stove, but it will just go bye bye. New package is Samsung S/S. Can’t wait to have everything organized and put away. I now have Pots/Pans drawers and pull out shelving in all lower cabinets and in my new pantry. Wish I could share photos, it is really pretty. It is such an exciting appearance. Have never done anything like this before.

    • Elizabeth says:

      How exciting, Barbara…new appliances!! I would have foregone the new flooring too!! Wish we could see it…bet it is beautiful!! Daughter put in some new things in her repo house this year…her stove is a marvel!! It is an induction one…and I am so amazed at how well it cooks…and often about as fast as the microwave too!!

    • Denise - Richmond VA says:

      Whoo-Hoo, Barbara!! The refurb finish line is almost here! Congratulations! I know you will be relieved to have your new kitchen in order and functioning! The pull out shelves sound wonderful! Please let us know how you like them. Enjoy the rest of the weekend! 🙂

    • weather says:

      It’s wonderful to see how happy having your kitchen redone is making you, Barbara 🙂 . Having a microwave and dishwasher can save a lot of time and work, I’m so glad you’ll have new, working ones soon. Doing the cooking and cleaning for you and your husband must often be tiring, I’m excited thinking that will soon be easier for you.

      In a reply to Denise a while ago you mentioned your sister had used Clorox with bleach spray cleaner on the bathroom tile/grout, appliances and floors. I had thought some of the spots and streaks on the floors, and yellowing white appliances in my home were permanent stains the prior occupants had made. After seeing your reply I used a foaming bleach spray cleaner on them all. Everything looks bright and clean now, thank you!

      • Denise - Richmond VA says:

        Hi, weather,

        My white painted baseboards are now sparkling clean after using a foaming bleach spray cleaner as suggested. Nothing else I tried in the past made a difference. Thank you again, Barbara! 🙂

  51. rvsueandcrew says:

    Hi, Blogorinos!

    That was fun, reading about your Halloween, present and past. I appreciate all your comments. Thank you!

    Working on a new post this morning with lots of photos from yesterday’s outing. It’s not quite ready yet. Come back in a little while!

    Bye for now,

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