Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Come to My Halloween Party!

Please join me for a Halloween gathering! Everyone will be there!

I have a great band lined up.

 They put the Grateful Dead to shame!

The vocalist (or lead screecher) is certain to curl your hair!

We have entertainment, too. If you like the amazing ventriloquist, you must stop and listen!

Feel free to come in costume....

...or come as you are!

We'll have a few games -- pirate booty is at stake!

And there will be a frighteningly fun game of hide and go seek!

You can bring a date if you like, but I'm sure any of these handsome individuals would be glad to make this a night you never forget.

They'll only have eyes for you!

Or maybe not!

This party is so big, they're coming from everywhere!

So join me and my friends for some fun...

...some tunes...

...and some thrills, chills and action!

I'm sure we can dig something up you'll enjoy!

Happy Halloween!

This post is part two of my contribution to Vanessa's wonderful Halloween party at A Fanciful Twist. Visit her site for links to lots of Halloween-related posts. Photos in this post were taken in the Halloween Room at the Chagrin Falls Hardware Store, Chagrin Falls, Ohio

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Decking the Hallowed Halls

It's the Halloween Holiday Home Tour! After all, one has to be ready for a party at all times, right? Welcome to my entry hall!

I can't resist Halloween decorating. The family room is probably my favorite room to do, with the fireplace and knotty pine paneling. You may remember my prayer flags draped across my Halloween mantle.

Here's a closer look.


Over on the dry sink, a Halloween tree.

At its top is a star by Alan Cunningham. As you might note, I have a fondness for black cats (and orange pumpkins!)

A few Radko ornaments are nestled in with the others.

This pumpkin also shares space with "Diva," an art doll by Pat of The Artful Diva.

But why stop at one tree? On the bookcase you'll find an ATC tree. One of the first bloggers I "met" online and one who inspired me to blog, Beth, made this for me. The cards are mostly from people who were in my old ATC Google group.

This sweet art doll is one of Joanne's creations.

And of course there is yet another pumpkin on the window seat!

Moving along to the living room, there are a few areas that get some attention, like the top of the china cabinet. The vintage lace belonged to a member of my book club who passed it on. It was her grandmother's.

Halloween cats find a home on another book case.

I'm very fond of these fellows. And I'm especially fond of the Vivian Swift portrait of Lizzie Coco that stays up no matter what the season! Don't you think the candy corn cat with its tippy tail and white chest bears a bit of a resemblance to my yappy girl?

I couldn't resist some feathers, willow branches and silk leaves in a green vase. It just worked for me!

Even the chandelier gets some love, those these photos don't show it so well as the ones from Christmas and Easter.

These two pieces are special The last time I saw my friend Diana, whom I met online, she gave me some wheat that was used in her daughter Nora's wedding. The presentation may change. The wheat stays up year round.


And a basket of gourds with the paper Gypsy-cat makes me smile.

We end the tour with the top of the wall unit, aka "The Big Ugly." (When I find a replacement, there will most certainly be a post about it!). Almost all of these are gifts from friends who know I just love decorating for Halloween.

And yes, the decorating spills out to other areas, but this is the most of it. And really, quite enough!

So, settle in, have an apple (candied or otherwise!) and enjoy the season. I know I will! And don't forget to come back later this week for a spooky Halloween party!

This is the first of two Halloween posts for Vanessa's Halloween Party -- check my sidebar for her blog (and party), including a series of links to other Halloweenies!

I'm also linking with Beverly's Pink Saturday posts -- We're doing a little big of orange and Halloweenie there, too! Come by for posts related to seasonal decorating and breast cancer awareness.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Putting on the Glitz

Before I share Halloween around the house, I wanted to tell you about a wonderfully easy way to glitz up your pumpkins (real or faux) for the season. It's easy, inexpensive and so pretty!

USArtQuest in Chelsea, MI, has a number of classes including some free DIY sessions. I attended the pumpkin prepping one. These were the prototypes.

The lighting in the studio really shows the sheen on these little gems, much better than in my photos.

Basically, it's one product -- metallic gold glaze, brushed onto the entire pumpkin and allowed to dry. (I suppose if you can't find metallic gold glaze, you could mix a bit of gold with a glazing medium, but I couldn't tell you quantities.)

Once it's dried, tie on some raffia if you like, or add flowers or stickers. They provided the materials here.

And that's basically it. Above is the one I made in the class. The ones below are those I did after I came home.

This one is a "real" pumpkin and I just used the raffia and moss on it.

These two were faux pumpkins. One had leafy beads, the other the floral/foliage treatment.


I later tried the same technique on some gourds with great success. Most of all, I was delighted with how quickly they came together. I could get hooked on these guys!

If you have a spare 20 minutes, give it a try. I think you'll be pleased with the results and the ways you can use them in your decorating.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

The Confession

The alarm rang at 5:15 and I tumbled wearily out of bed, swapping my sleep shirt for a sweatshirt and throwing on a pair of jeans. Energized by the first gulp or two of Tab, I was ready to take Rick to the airport for a six-day trip to a small town outside of Vancouver where he was meeting with a client for a week.

He picked me up -- we'd take his car to the airport, partly because I was woefully low on gas. I dropped him off at he door, we kissed goodbye and as he walked into the terminal, I took off for home. It still wasn't really light out. And it was raining.

There was plenty of time to return the car to his house. Instead, I parked it in my driveway and settled into a day of doing all the things on my list: checking blogs, paying bills, scheduling appointments with the eye doc, the foot goddess and the colonoscopy people. I gave the kitchen a good going over and got the house decorated for fall. I was rolling!

It was one of the last opportunities to see the film "Life Itself," a documentary about film critic Roger Ebert (I gave it two thumbs up, by the way). And I had time to make it. I grabbed my purse, illegal water and a banana, hit the garage door opener and backed out of the garage with abandon.

I think you know where I'm going with this.

It could have been worse. But the damage was there in plain view. A super scrape. Or two. (I really don't know HOW the black one at the top happened).

My heart was in my throat. But there was nothing I could do so I went to the movie.

Let's just say I would have enjoyed this fabulous movie much more if my heart hadn't been pounding for the first two thirds. I was beginning to wonder if I should take myself to the ER after it was over. But, in the time from my house until the film started (and well into it, I might add), I figured out what to do.

First thing the next morning I would hit the body shop with his car. Leave it. Beg them to get it done by Monday (possibly with great futility) and mea culpa when he returned.

I just knew I couldn't tell him on the phone. In the first place, the car was recently bumped out and repaired from an incident that took place a long time ago but that was my fault. (Let's just say that if you're on a highway and you have to pee and you even think the ramp might have black ice on it, move very slowly on the exit.)

He hasn't been sleeping well, he's working in a different time zone and in a new environment with a client and possibly meeting potential new customers for his software system that he designed. I know Rick well enough to know that first, he would freak big time. And second, he wouldn't sleep, he'd be so worried. And there was nothing he could do about it.

Fortunately at the movie I ran into a good friend and her husband who said he'd had great experiences at one particular body shop, especially in the paint-matching department. So, it was off to them the first thing in the morning.

Well, as you might expect, they couldn't turn around a repair before Rick got home, but they can do it. It's not cheap. In fact, it was more than three mortgage payments. But my bad, my redemption.

(I discovered that the only thing free was the estimates!)

I made an appointment to return with the car, unfortunately after he was home, and when I picked him up I came clean. (That sounds filled with integrity but basically I had no choice.) And while it was a little bumpy initially, when I talked to him the next day from Canada where I had fled (not really! Long planned!), he was just amazingly wonderful.

I didn't tell him the full estimate but when I did say it was in four figures (after he said, "It should only be about five hundred, right?), he said don't do that. So I didn't. Yet.

When he's ready for it to be fixed, I'm good for it. But we'll look for a better deal or do a little less or whatever it takes. But right now I feel like the luckiest person in the world that he was so forgiving. (Because you see, to me, it looked or at least felt like it was totaled.

Besides, you should have seen the other guy! I'll add my scratches to my collection of dents and pings and soldier on!

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