October seems to be speeding by – two weeks from today will be Halloween. Mother Nature sure has had some tricks and treats for we mortals as well. Like teasing us with 74-degree temps early Sunday, only to whisk away that balmy weather and replace it with bone-chilling temps of only 44 degrees these past two mornings. I think we’ve been tricked into thinking Fall is still Summer, yet treated by those warmer temps after that season’s arrival, don’t you?
The CBS First Forecast’s headline cried out “ready your hoodie” … hmm, I thought I did that at Labor Day already!
While walking through the neighborhoods, I’ve noticed how that wicked wind sure took its toll on the harvest and Halloween décor.
Spindly skeletons and filmy-looking ghosts were grabbed and thrown across homeowners’ lawns, landing face down, or with limbs akimbo, they suddenly were no longer so scary looking. Similarly, scarecrows spun out of control on their bamboo stakes, causing some of their stuffing to go airborne and those great gusts left them looking lopsided. Even those mean-looking witches riding their brooms looked slightly askew, having lost some of their ghastly demeanor.
If you conjure up an image of a witch, it is usually of an old woman cloaked in black, with a huge wart on her nose, hunching over a boiling cauldron as she mixes up a special brew, perhaps concocting a magic potion.
So, are those potions guaranteed to ward off evil, with their eye of newt and other horrible-sounding ingredients? Not all potions are evil. My friend Ann Marie brought me some “magic potions” recently. No, she didn’t make them up from scratch, but she bought me these exquisite elixirs that are guaranteed to cast a spell on those eight-legged creatures that find their way into your home once those cooler Fall days arrive. And, lucky for me, in anticipation of an extremely rainy week ahead, the prior weekend I used Ann Marie’s potions a/k/a peppermint spray and eucalyptus oil, to ward off the spiders who love to come into the house and warm up or dry off, especially on those cool and damp days like we’ve just endured.
So, just a spritz-spritz here and a spritz-spritz there of peppermint on my fuzzy, long-handled duster and that’s all I needed to ward off those spiders that like to terrorize me. Eucalyptus oil will similarly deter those creepy crawlies from entering your home. Neither of these magic potions will kill spiders, but, unlike you and me who enjoy the taste and smell of a candy cane, or like to inhale a whiff of a decorative eucalyptus wreath, arachnids are not into aromatherapy, so they will scurry away just as fast as their eight legs will carry them. So, voila – you have insecticide that doesn’t smell like pesticide and your rooms are sweet-smelling and spider-free.
As we near October 31st, more and more images of Halloween will greet us daily. My fear of spiders, (more correctly termed “arachnophobia”), might seem a tad irrational to someone who merely grabs a Kleenex to squash that spider that is industriously scaling a wall or squatting in a corner of the room. But, even those “itsy bitsy spiders” will have me on edge, and, in my mind’s eye, those small, eight-legged creepy crawlies might as well be the size of my fist, or, even more unrealistically, the size of those Halloween decorations that have sprung up the last few weeks, like these gigantic plastic or faux fur spiders that loom large on front windows, or dangle from rooftops –they’re enough to make you shudder like a bad nightmare.
But, those fake spiders are just that, and, happily I tamed those for-real, feared, eight-legged beasts by merrily spritzing peppermint spray and eucalyptus oil in the house, thanks to Ann Marie, who did similarly at her abode.
Now, if only there was a magic potion to combat the rest of life’s problems just as easily.