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Acorns and Potato Flowers Acorns dangle from oak trees to kiss summer flowers goodbye. With the weather still summery warm, it’s hard to believe that in nine days, fall officially begins. My backyard reflects the coming change. Summer vegetable plants look forlorn and have slowed down their production. Bird feeders require almost daily refills. Squirrels scamper back and forth on the branches of my Japanese maple tree, looking for food and breaking branches as they go. The seasons of my life seem to pass by faster and faster. I’m reluctant to let another season in my life go by, but fall approaches and it deserves to be fully appreciated.

#1 – Foiling Squirrels
Snack Bag Squirrel Deterrent If you look closely at this picture you’ll notice two shiny decorations. As mentioned above, the squirrels have been wreaking havoc in my Japanese maple tree. One night while watching television and eating Skinny Pop with my husband, I came up with an idea. Many snacks, like potato chips and popcorn, come in Mylar bags. Instead of throwing the empty bags away, I rinsed them out and cut them open along the sides. Using clothes pins, I fastened the bags in strategic places to my tree. Every couple of days, I try to outwit the squirrels and move the bags around. So far, so good – no new piles of broken branches on the ground. The only downside to this is trying to explain the “decorations” to visitors.

#2 – Ten on One Page
Infographics Infographics make complex or large amounts of information more understandable. Lifehacker’s Top 10 Infographics and Cheat Sheets That Make Life Easier provides information ranging from how to remove stains to what to do when you get pulled over!

#3 – Print Ads
Clever Ads Maybe I like these 24 Clever Print Ads because I know people in the advertising business or maybe it’s because I’m intrigued with the idea of communicating messages via images. Using the power of a single image, see if these ads grab your attention.

#4 – Do You Eat Store-Bought Cereal Every Morning?
enhanced-buzz-16162-1375889707-9 Well, if you do, you may want to think twice before you discard empty cereal boxes. As seen in this BuzzFeed article 31 Things You Can Make Out of Cereal Boxes, a little bit of cardboard goes a long way!

#5 – Take Charge
“You must take personal responsibility. You cannot change the circumstances, the seasons, or the wind, but you can change yourself. That is something you have charge of.”
Jim Rohn

Enjoy these last days of summer!

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Sycamore tree bark

Photo by Linnell Chang

Giant leaves crunched under our feet as we walked along a pathway. “You should see these trees,” my mom said as we approached a grassy common area in her neighborhood. A row of tall sycamore trees dominated the landscape. Incredible patches of bark, resembling camouflage, covered their large trunks. They looked like an artist splashed paint on them. Taking my camera out of my pocket, I focused on the bark of one tree and while looking through the viewfinder, I spotted something interesting. A profile of a face and a neck, complete with an Adam’s apple, sat in the middle of my LCD screen. Blotches of reddish hair, a round eye, and a curve of a smile further defined the face. “Art within art,” I said to myself as I snapped the photo. Can you see the face?

#1 – Oh, the Possibilities!
Seeing the possibilities in things is a talent upcyclers possess. Awhile back on this blog I mentioned that I shred empty toilet paper tubes and add them to my compost bin. Well, there are more creative ways to reuse those toilet paper tubes! Check out these upcycling ideas from other bloggers:

Toilet Paper Roll Wall Art

Paint With Toilet Paper Rolls

Painting with toilet paper tubes

Toilet Tube Gift Boxes

Toilet paper roll gift boxes

Toilet Paper Jewelry Tray

toilet paper jewelry box

Seed Starter Pots

tolilet paper seed pots

#2 – Strength Training
Don’t see any reason why you should lift weights? Take a look at the 10 Reasons to Strength Train infograph and you’ll discover more than one reason why it’s important. strength training infograph

#3 – Clever Science
Science World Museum clever ad To reinforce the notion that science is interesting and exists everywhere and to entice more people to visit their museum, the people at Science World in British Columbia presented a clever series of billboards. Which billboard catches your attention?

#4 – Pumpkin Beverage Dispenser
DIY pumpkin beer keg Seeing is believing. Picture apple cider streaming out of a spigot stuck into a pumpkin. Sounds pretty fun. Although the directions Carve Your Pumpkin Into a Beer Keg mention beer as the beverage of choice, I think serving any beverage in your “pumpkin keg” will make fall entertaining more festive!

#5 – Seeing the Distance
“Always concentrate on how far you have come, rather than how far you have left to go. The difference in how easy it seems will amaze you.”
― Heidi Johnson

Have a lovely autumn weekend!

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