The Changing Seasons – October 2020

I can’t believe how fast October went by! And that it’s time again for Su‘s wonderful challenge The Changing Seasons!

Unlike her I didn’t spend a lot of time gardening as Winter’s coming (definitely watched too much GoT again!!) and my plants are getting ready for hibernation. Wish I could do that too!

Before I get into what I did this month, let me quickly say THANK YOU to two of my wonderful friends who surprised me with their amazing gifts this month:

My dear friend Marlene from over at In Search Of It All gifted me with this beautiful heart shaped mug rug!

How she found the time to do it, what with having had to evacuate because of the terrible fires and smoke that were bringing devastation to the west of the US, will remain a mystery to me!

It’s now hanging on the wall above my desk, where it makes me smile whenever I look at it, with its heartwarming, wonderful message.

Beautiful mug rug by my friend Marlene

And then came another unexpected surprise, this time from my wonderful friend Darren from over at The Artsy Plantsman!

An original piece of art, a perfect pencil drawing of a giraffe! (It’s also now hanging on the wall above my desk.)

To think of all the hours my friends have spend creating these beautiful pieces of art for me makes me feel utterly grateful and blessed.

Perfect pencil drawing of a giraffe by Darren

And now to what I was up to in October!

Because it was a lot of fun in September I decided to make another doodle calendar:

Doodle calendar October 2020 (ink and watercolor on paper)

What I hadn’t expected was that it was much more challenging to draw it this time than the last because somehow I ended up doing almost the same things as in September! Which mainly is buying groceries, cooking, reading, making art (expect an Inktober post soon!) and going for walks in between.

What stood out was a surprise visit from a squirrel at my kitchen window (I live on the fourth floor so this really was a first!), a busted kitchen sink drain, getting my flu shot and making quince marmalade (also a first).

First half of October

I spend an inappropriate amount of time cleaning – all in all three consecutive days, which should do for another six months at least (just kidding!) and watching TV.

So in a way you could say that I was practicing for our second lockdown that’s in place from tomorrow on.

Second half of October

I also tried out a new for me recipe – Japanese Miso soup. I added a few more vegetables than customary, also some buckwheat soba noodles which I seem to have forgotten to add to the picture.

It was so yummy that I didn’t have time to take a photo of it once it was cooked! Maybe next time. πŸ˜‰

Miso soup in the making

On the creative side I made a new shopping bag for my mum with a Mexican fabric that I fell in love with the instant I spotted it on the street market (as part of her birthday presents).

Isn’t this fabric wonderful?

New shopping bag

Since she adores coffee I thought it would be fun for her to not only drink it but also wear it.

So I made these cute little earrings with freshly roasted coffee beans!

Coffee bean earrings

Coffee bean earrings

Let’s end this post with an amazing sunset that I watched from my balcony a few days ago:

Golden sunset

And this was it! Hope you enjoyed this post, and I look forward to reading yours!

If you would like to join in, here are the challenge guidelines:

The Changing Seasons Version One (photographic):

Each month, post 5-20 photos in a gallery that you feel represent your month
Don’t use photos from your archive. Only new shots.
Tag your posts with #MonthlyPhotoChallenge and #TheChangingSeasons so that others can find them
The Changing Seasons Version Two (you choose the format):

Each month, post a photo, recipe, painting, drawing, video, whatever that you feel says something about your month
Don’t use archive stuff. Only new material!
Tag your posts with #MonthlyPhotoChallenge and #TheChangingSeasons so others can find them.
If you do a ping-back to Su’s original post, she can update hers with links to all of yours.

Published by Sarah

Artist & Illustrator

58 thoughts on “The Changing Seasons – October 2020

  1. Thank you for sharing your gifts – the giraffe is so adorable, and that Mug Rug is so inspired! (I love that name – I have never encountered it before … so descriptive!)

    The coffee bean earrings are so clever! and cute. Did you lacquer them? Do they still smell of coffee? What a fabulous idea for coffee-lovers. Your mom must have loved them.

    The Miso-soup-in-the-making looks like it would be delicious! I have never thought of putting carrots in – I will try that next time!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I haven’t heard or known of mug rugs before either, Ju-Lyn, and fell instantly in love with the name and the concept. πŸ˜€

      No, no lacquer on the coffee beans because we want them to smell of coffee, don’t we? πŸ˜‰ Though the scent seems to wear of after some times, maybe should replace them with new beans!

      The carrots were really lovely in the miso soup, you should try it! πŸ˜€


      1. I must tell Older Daughter about mug rugs … maybe she will make me some πŸ™‚

        Renewable scented earrings – rather fabulous concept!

        I will try the miso soup …. after I finish my batch of butternut squash soup!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. This is a lovely wrap up of October, Sarah. You have some lovely blogger friend’s there. Marlene’s mug rug is a lovely green colour with a sweet message, and Darren’s giraffe drawing looks so life-like. So thoughtful of them and great you found a place for them at home πŸ™‚

    What a lovely October doodle calendar. So colourful, bright and cheery. Awww you found it challenging because you didn’t want a repeat of September! I think with different colours and as oyu said, different things happening it is different.

    I get you about inappropriate cleaning. A lot of the time I find myself cleaning my place, be it cleaning one room or a few rooms. I used to clean the whole apartment in one day, then realised it made me tired so I decided to change to cleaning habits – cleaning a bit and cleaning different things on different days. Cleaning becomes less tiring for me, but then it also feels like I’m always cleaning lol.

    The rabbit on 24 October looks sooo cute. Also I see a birthday cake on the last day of October πŸ˜€

    Such a lovely sunset at the end. Hope you are okay over there and lockdown isn’t too bad! We are just getting out of lockdown here in Australia since March πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you very much for your lovely comment, Mabel!
      Yes, I count myself very lucky and blessed with the wonderful friends that I’ve found here!
      And I’m so relieved to hear that I’m not the only one spending far too much time cleaning!! πŸ˜€ I’m still with the clean-it-all-in-one-day agenda but might give your new approach a try. I’ve read somewhere that it’s also worth a try to invest about 5 minutes for each room each day. But somehow when I start cleaning I can’t just stop after a mere 5 minutes – lol! πŸ˜€

      Our lockdown isn’t actually too bad, all shops, even nonessential ones, stay open, it’s just restaurants and cafΓ©s, gyms and the like that are closed. Schools are still open too. But I have a feeling that this might all change if our numbers don’t get down soon.

      So happy for you in Australia that you’re out of lockdown and heading for summer! From what I’ve heard you have been handling the situation with care and caution and are now rewarded with very low numbers, right? Will keep my fingers crossed that it stays that way!
      Take care!


      1. That is interesting, 5 mins a day for each room. It sounds like it will make cleaning easier. Every little bit of cleaning each day makes your home a bit more tidier and homey πŸ˜€

        That’s great all shops over there are still open. Hopefully not too many crowds over there and the numbers come down soon. We have no cases here in Victoria for almost two weeks, which is amazing. But it all started with one case at first and we had big numbers…so hopefully not again!

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Such lovely, loving gifts from your friends. What a lucky person you are. I love your doodle calendar – an inventive way to remember the highlights of your month. I might give this idea a try. And I also love the gorgeous fabric you used to sew your mom’s new shopping bag – lucky mom, loving daughter.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Shari! Yes, I’m really blessed with my friends here, they’re so wonderful and generous and humble me with their thoughtful gifts. πŸ˜€
      I bet you’d enjoy making one of those doodle calendars, maybe even inspire your grandchildren to do one too. It’s really fun though I’ve noticed that for lack of interesting events it has become quite challenging to draw it, so I’m skipping November. πŸ˜‰

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Ah, you’re so right!! (She says and slaps her hand to her forehead!) Okay, will start catching up right after dinner! πŸ˜€πŸ’•


    1. Of course I don’t mind! Especially since I borrowed that idea from another blogging friend (“A Wonderful Sheep” on WP, I think I’ve mentioned her in my September Changing Seasons post in case you want to visit). πŸ˜€
      I know you’ll have a great time doing it!


    1. Thank you so much! Yes, I feel also a bit reminded of a puzzle and was wondering what people would made of it. πŸ˜„ Maybe I should add descriptions?


    1. Thanks so much, Tracy!
      We’re in what you might call a part-lockdown: schools, kindergardens and all shops (even non-essential ones) are staying open. Restaurants, cafes, clubs, gyms are closed. No theatres, cinema or concerts either. The zoo is still open though and I’m planning to visit it soon again. Need some little panda love! 😁
      Are you headed for a lockdown as well?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yep, as soon as the election is over in our area (the county executive controls lock downs for our areal, but he’s up for re-election today, so he’s not going to do that until he is safely re-elected.) Thankfully, I think they will be partial as well, so hopefully it will help get the Covid numbers down without throwing thousands more out of work. I do feel so sorry for the owners of restaurants, bars and gyms as they are hit the hardest. I can’t help the bars and gyms, but we are ordering food from our favorite restaurants as often as possible and even eating on their patios (only the ones who do it right) when weather permits. Praying for better treatments and vaccines soon!

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I don’t know where to start. I love your mother’s gifts — coffee bean earrings are the absolute best idea!!!!
    Miso soup is wonderful; yummy and incredibly comforting. And I don’t think you can have too many veges.
    I love seeing your calendar; the drawing make me smile. Looking forward to seeing your Inktober.
    Stay safe my dear friend. xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you very much, Su! πŸ™πŸ’• Hehe! I thought those earrings might appeal to coffee lovers all around the globe. πŸ˜‰ And they’re really easy to make: earrings, wood glue, coffee beans- voilΓ ! πŸ˜€ Your perfect emergency supply amd coffee to go. πŸ˜‰
      Just tried glazing veggies with miso for a stir fry this weekend – also very yummy! You too stay safe! Hugs! xxx


  5. So much to love! Coffee bean earrings. Gifties! And that FABRIC, yessss. I have two pillow cases from Ecuador that remind me of your new tote. And the calendar, so pretty and so many questions. Llama with wellies? Birthday cake, so was it your birthday?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hehe! Thank you, Land! Actually it was my mum’s birthday, and the Llama wasn’t wearing wellies that was just what I thought might be nice because its paddock was so muddy. 😁 Should add descriptions to my doodles. πŸ˜„ I bet those pillow cases look fab, and thanks for telling me about them – now I know what I’m going to do with my leftover fabric!!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I love your doodle calendars. They make even ordinary days seem special.

    Such lovely gifts, given and received. You mom’s purse is fantastic.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you very much, Nicki!
      It’s definitely a fun way to portray each day like this. Though with lockdown being in place again I might not be drawing one this month for lack of activities.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Liz! Is it awful to confess that I bought more of that fabric to make a little shopping bag for myself as well? πŸ˜‚
      And yes, the gifts really gave me such a lift in spirits and still do – like magic. πŸ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks a lot, Brian! πŸ™πŸ’•
      Ah, that. Well, just a little bout of depression if I’m honest, but nothing serious. Got better the next days. I guess the pandemic has that effect on many right now.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Enjoyed reading this Sarah. The giraffe looks lovely in its frame!
    The doodle calendars are great but I suspect mine would not have a lot of variety either these days! Highlight of my October was being allowed out for a haircut.
    Love the earrings too! You are so creative😍

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aww – thank you, Darren! 😍
      The earrings were a huge success with my mum. Now she has an emergency supply wherever she goes. πŸ˜‰
      I’m not sure if I’m going to draw a calendar for November, it was already so challenging last month, and with the lockdown upon us I suspect there won’t be a lot of variety either.


  8. Beautiful Mexican fabric–perfect for an eye-catching shopping bag. Also loved your coffee bean earrings. While our days during a pandemic may not be brimming over with activities, they don’t have to be dull πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Thanks for the pingback, Sarah. I’m glad you liked it. Love your friends giraffe too. The doodle calendar looked fun if you can draw. πŸ˜‰ I think that’s why I journal and use words. Those I can manage. I’m sorry you are all on lockdown again. I never thought about making earrings out of coffee beans!!! Did you make a pair for yourself?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hehe! Yes, I couldn’t resist and made a pair for me as well – now I smell coffee everywhere I go! 😁 And if need be I can use them for a very tiny spoonful of coffee to go. πŸ˜‰ I bet it’s better than sucking on a pebble anyway. πŸ˜„
      Love writing a journal too but ever since the pandemic I seem to be lost for words so drawing it is. πŸ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

  10. I thoroughly enjoyed your calendar, Sarah. What fun. And the coffee bean earrings! Lol. That was a great idea – I hope your mom got a good chuckle from that gift. A beautiful and creative post as always. Stay safe, my friend. ❀ Sending hugs.


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