Ah. New years. Everyone back to work.
I try to keep things pretty light on here, but many people that know me in my professional life know I’m a firm believer in Festivus when it comes to broader society.
There’s always been something about Christmas in the wider sense that has always bothered me. (obviously Halloween is my favorite) And I do enjoy Christmas with the family. However, Christmas as a season really, really gets on my nerves.
Getting in my car this morning reminded me why, as we are left with one last blast of that Christmas cheer.
Holidays seem to largely revolve around questions.
For all the talk of the Christmas spirit, and peace on earth, good will toward men…what question always gets asked leading up to Christmas?
“What do you want?”
Yes, there are those that this is not the meaning to Christmas, but it is THE QUESTION we are asked ad nauseam. From the TV, to the co-worker, to the random person you get chatting with. It is THE conversation piece that dominates the season.
So it is this, the first working day of the year, we get that question slightly rephrased. “So, what did you GET?”
First thing, blasting out the radio. And the answers range from cute and humble to some attempt to display superiority in gift receipt, like any competition.
There are a lot of things that flow through the Christmas season that tend to wear on me, making my joy of the season lessened. Perhaps none more so than this question.
Halloween has it’s own question, however.
“What do you want TO BE?”
I find this one infinitely more interesting than the one asked at Christmas.
With the house remodel being finished, it’s time to start looking to the yard.
One of the harder things with expanding the house was losing back yard. We spent most the summer cleaning up refuse from the remodel, and it was time to start thinking of what we want in the yard.
I always wanted a path between the gardens, and all the way around the house. We needed a patio. And we wanted a nice fire pit area.
So, we began looking for fire pit area ideas, and really fell in love with the idea of these standing stone ones.
No, I can’t recreate any one of those, but it does give a direction we can look towards.
Seeing what we had to work with, we first marked off a new patio area.
And then the fire pit circle (we don’t think it will end up this large, but giving plenty of room to play with depending on what stones we can find)
So, with such a big project in place, Halloween once again is going to take a little bit of a back seat. But, that doesn’t mean I’m not finding interesting little tidbits to draw inspiration from.
Another busy year in the books, taking a year ‘off’ from doing the full yard, and limiting it to only the front.
This let us play with a lot of things as a test for future years. New lighting, new ideas, new format.
The party this year was amazing despite the wind trying to kill it. Many neighbors, both new and experienced, come by to help carve pumpkins. We tried a few new things with this on the sly, things that give me ideas for the future.
Halloween night was near perfect weather, and the smaller venue allowed us to focus more on just having fun than trying to keep eyes on all corners.
Some big things are in the works for 2018 as we work towards some PERMANENT additions to the back yard that will help make Halloween night easier on us, and memorable for you.
2016 has been a long journey.
Our main focus for the year has been on the house. Most importantly the kitchen.
Here’s a from concept sketch to where we are today…
Even with being in the middle of construction, we’ve had a lot of fun as well.
And while it took a different form than normal, we focused on the community and managed to put on our Halloween party in the midst of construction.
As 2016 slides to a close, and the house hurtles towards completion, there will soon be an actual workshop, and the plans can get back on track…