Jason Robie - Prepare for Coming Winter

Chances are good that there are lots of Halloween events happening around town this weekend. Get out there and enjoy the festivities. If nothing else, this is your best excuse to chow down on bite-sized candy bars. Remember, if you can fit the whole bar in your mouth in one bite, it eliminates the calories and fat! That’s just science. We’re actually getting spoiled this weekend with amazing weather, so get out there and have some fun. If you find yourself, like me, stuck at home though, I wanted to share a few ideas for keeping yourself busy and preparing for the coming winter and the coming festivities.

Something often overlooked this time of year is all of our outdoor “stuff.” Last weekend, I finally put away our deck chairs and table. I had stored the umbrella weeks ago simply because it got a bit blustery and didn’t want to find it down the street! Of course, your kids are great at putting away all of their toys, but on the off chance some of those things are still lingering on the lawn, get them in the garage or the basement.

With the changing temperatures between night and day this time of year, I find it to be the perfect breeding ground for rust. Any little scratch or blemish on metal bikes, toys and furniture will be exposed to these temperature swings and morning moisture. Save yourself some sanding and painting next spring and get those items under cover. Speaking of cover, actually just covering them up (yes, even with a blue tarp!) will help a ton. It keeps the moisture up on the tarp and protects your things from the elements.

Although the peak of foliage is waving goodbye, there is still time to get out there and grab a few branches for decorations. A couple simple foliage-filled branches in a rustic vase treats you to a vibrant piece that should stick around for a couple weeks. Since it is in the fall spirit, even evergreen branches can fill that space quite nicely too. Of course those also have the “feel” of Christmas, and you may not quite be ready for that yet (understandably so).

“Another great use for leaf filled branches and evergreens is on chandeliers and walls,” notes Badger Realty agent Roland Turgeon. “Putting decorative branches and leaves inside a picture frame is a simple but attractive addition to your walls and the foliage-colored leaves look great on a white-lit chandelier,” he continued.

Did you know that Oct. 27 is National Black Cat Day? And that Oct. 29 is National Cat Day! Let’s celebrate our cozy, furry friends. In the spirit of caring for our four-legged housemates, remember to keep them feeling safe and secure this Halloween. If you intend to hand out candy to the little neighborhood kids, a quiet closed-off room in the house might be the best place for Fido and Mittens. It will help reduce their stress and make for a better night overall.

One of my favorite parts about this time of year is we get the first whiffs of wood-burning stoves throughout the area. Chances are good that if you heat your home with wood you are well stocked already and prepared for the colder months. If you are not, this would be a great time to get that wood ordered, stacked and ready to go. This can also be a good time to order wood if you just want to be prepared for the coming years. It is typically cool outside so cutting and stacking is far more pleasant than in the heat of the summer.

As the weather turns a bit less welcoming, weekends are a great time to cozy up on the couch and do some binge watching. If you are in the spirit of the holiday, there are loads of scary movies on cable right now. If you are a Netflix subscriber, I’m sure there will be a full category just for you. If you’re like me, and don’t “do” scary movies, perhaps taking in a classic or a comedy will be more to your liking.

Fall is an amazing time of year and a great excuse to do some fresh decorating around the house. Take care of a few chores this weekend by protecting your outdoor equipment and then maybe turn your focus inside. I hope you have a great holiday weekend and get all the candy treats you were hoping for!