October is totally my most favorite month of the year. Where I live in California we have seasons but they are on the subtle side - and so the way you really feel "fall" approaching is through the halloween decorations that begin to pop up on lawns and houses around us.
I find Halloween decor to be somewhat of a slippery slope. Years ago I began with the classy natural approach: a bare grapevine wreath, candy corns in a jar on the counter, blown-out eggs painted with semi-spooky Martha Stewart designs.
But soon pine cones and pumpkins no longer satisfied my who-knew-they-were-so-bloodthirsty children so I bought a tombstone for the lawn. The next thing you know we have an upsidown (presumably being tortured?) skeleton hanging from the limbs of a sweet little tree in the front yard and I find myself participating in a dinnertime conversation with the husband and children wondering if perhaps it might not be a good idea to make a pretend fire beneath the dangling skeleton.
But really, it's hard to compete when you have this across the street from you:
Yes, those are zombie BABIES behind the dismembered bloody man.
My friend Liz has I think found the perfect middle ground. Check out her flock of paper bats, flying across her family room:
Spooky and yet not something that would be forbidden by the Geneva Convention. Happy October!