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Thursday, October 31, 2013

13 Days of Halloween - Day 13

13 Days of Halloween - Day 13

Even white cats just wanna have fun on Halloween!

Jacks on the stairs.

Here's this year's jack o' lanterns. Mark carved the bottom one, I carved the middle one, and Lauren carved the top one (It's a Minecraft creeper.).

This afternoon was bittersweet, as it was the last Halloween parade that Lauren will participate in at school (Next year, she'll be at the elementary school, and they don't do parades or costume parties anymore.). It went so fast - I can remember helping at her kindergarten and first grade parties. Last year, I got stuck in traffic coming from work, so I missed the parade altogether.

This is the type of situation where it's impossible to get good photos. Then it dawned on me - why not take a video instead? This was the second lap around the school, so some of the kids were already over it. It starts with kindergarten (In fact, that's Lauren's kindergarten teacher leading it off) and finishes with 3rd grade, so you won't see Lauren until the end. Nonetheless, it's fun to see all the costumes, and some of the kids are hysterical (Be on the lookout for "curtsy girl.")Also, you'll note that when 3rd grade finally arrives, they practically run past us. I asked Lauren about this, and she explained, "That's cause no one wants to see their parents!" Right, got it.

We ended the night trick or treating in the pouring rain. This was the first time in three years that we stayed around our neighborhood. I sat in the garage and gave out candy while Mark took Lauren from house to house. I was thrilled that we had nine kids come (I made 15 treat bags).

So that does it for another Halloween. Now to watch all the Christmas commercials during "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!"

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

13 Days of Halloween - Day 12

13 Days of Halloween: Day 11

This Halloween, Lauren is going as a vampire.  Unfortunately, the materials I needed to custom make her fangs didn't arrive before we had our little shoot, but I couldn't put the photos off any longer because the weather is supposed to be rainy and windy on Halloween.  She picked out the costume herself. Doesn't she have awesome taste?

It's for you.

Since we didn't have the finished vampire look, I had this idea to accessorize with an apple. You know, the whole temptation thing. You meet a sweet little girl in the forest. She offers you an apple. Then, she sucks out your life force.

A goodly apple rotten at the heart: O, what a goodly outside falsehood hath.

I think Lauren was actually into having her photo taken this time. She even came up with all the poses on her own. This one is my favorite.

Tonight, Lauren and Mark are carving our pumpkins, and then tomorrow is a big day with a party and parade at school followed by (hopefully) trick or treating.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

13 Days of Halloween - Day 11

 13 Days of Halloween:  Day 11

It's Cookie's first Halloween! Having a small dogs means having a huge selection of costumes from which to choose, but from the start, I knew that I wanted her to be Count Cookie.

 Count Cookie.

Looking good in the purple glitter bow tie!

Trick or treat.

You don't even want to know what kind of trick this dog will lay at your doorstep if you don't give her a treat.  Believe me - I've cleaned it up. A lot.

Monday, October 28, 2013

13 Days of Halloween - Day 10

13 Days of Halloween - Day 10

Just a quick one for today, as I'm saving the really good stuff for the home stretch. I had wanted to make these candy corn shaped rice crispie treats last year, but I never got around to it. They were fun and easy, so now I'm already dreaming of rice crispie trees and Santa hats for Christmas. The skeleton plate only comes out for Halloween parties, but since it makes me happy, I thought I'd bring it out of retirement just this one time.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

13 Days of Halloween - Day 9

13 Days of Halloween - Day 9

I've been meaning to take a photo of the inside of Mark's antique desk. I think it more than adequately provided the atmosphere I was to achieve here. :)

Saturday, October 26, 2013

13 Days of Halloween: Day 8

13 Days of Halloween: Day 8

I did a similar shot last year for the 25 Days of Christmas, so I thought, why not?

Friday, October 25, 2013

13 Days of Halloween - Day 7

Wow - we're already over half way through the project. This isn't so bad after all.

Mark pointed out the cute skelly bowl last weekend at the antique store. So I adopted him.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

13 Days of Halloween: Day 6

13 Days of Halloween:  Day 6

Hanging it up after a long day's work.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

13 Days of Halloween: Day 5

13 Days of Halloween:  Day 5

It's the holidays, which means it's time to stalk my neighbors. I can't help myself - they have a fabulous house and always go all out with the decorations.

Spooky house by day.

Here's how it looks in the daylight. Even the Home Depot Homer buckets add a nice touch of Halloween orange, don't you think?

13 Days of Halloween - Day 4

13 Days of Halloween - Day 4

Oops - I took this one yesterday, posted it to Flickr, Twitter and Facebook, but forgot to blog it.  I don't know how people manage all their social media.

Anyway, I bought these cute foam pumpkin decorations for last year's project, but I didn't get a chance to use them until now.

Monday, October 21, 2013

13 Days of Halloween - Day 3

This is a bit of a repeat from last year, but I needed to bring out my little haunted house luminary again so I could show off my cute, glittery bottle brush tree. I found it at an antique shop this past weekend (It's not old though). I'd like to find a few more so I can make a display from them. For now, it can be landscaping for my haunted house.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

13 Days of Halloween - Day 2

13 Days of Halloween 2013 - Day 2

Yesterday after we visited the garden center, we stopped the browse a local antique store. There I saw some vintage satin masks for sale. I thought they would look fun displayed together, but instead of buying them there, I thought I could probably find them cheaper at a party store. So today, I checked out Party City which has an impressive selection of costumes and costume accessories. I think they even put the dedicated Halloween stores to shame! Anyway, I was excited to find that they carried the masks in every color of the rainbow I guess if you're dressing up as The Riddler or Green Lantern or a sexy leprechaun, you're out of luck. So I had to substitute with the rainbow one. Also, they ended up costing just as much as they were at the antique store. Oh well, at least they're shiny and new.

Sometimes we all wear masks.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

13 Days of Halloween - Day 1

13 Days of Halloween 2013 - Day 1

I was debating whether or not I was going to do the 13 Days of Halloween this year, but I think I can swing it without having a nervous breakdown. We're starting off slow today with some crazy looking pumpkins and gourds. Mark loves crazy looking pumpkins. He's trying to grow some of his own this year, but these are from a local garden center. The unique varieties of pumpkins and gourds have really caught on over the past couple of years. The garden center where this photo was taken was way ahead of it's time. We used to go there years ago because it was practically the only place that sold white pumpkins, goose neck gourds, and bird house gourds. Now even the grocery store down the street has a big display similar to this one.

 Pumpkins on parade.

I wonder what happens to all the unsold pumpkins after Halloween. They can last for a very long time if they're unbruised and you keep them in a cool, dry place. I know it's always a quandary at our house. Usually the uncarved ones that we use for display are still around at Christmas. Maybe I should paint them green and red. Hmm....

Sunday, October 6, 2013

In search of the Great Pumpkin.

Pumpkins to infinity.

Also last weekend, we visited Soergel's Orchards for their annual fall festival.

 Just ducky.

 Exiting the hay maze.

Posing in the front of the hay maze at 

In addition to a pumpkin patch, they had lots of games and activities for kids. Lauren really liked the hay maze, except when her flashlight went out in the middle of it.

 In sync.

While Lauren was hanging out with her grandparents, I went and checked out the horses in the neighboring pasture.


This one was really friendly. He came right up to me and posed!

That one.

Then we took a walk up to the pumpkin patch. Lauren wanted to get one, but I was a party pooper and did my best to talk her out it. For some reason, even though the pumpkins were coming straight from the source, they were pretty expensive. It was really putting a damper on the sincerity level at the patch. Linus would have been very disappointed. Oh Great Pumpkin, where are you!

In the pumpkin patch.

No worries - this story still has a happy ending. Later, daddy would buy three pumpkins for the less price we would have paid for one at the patch. All hail, Great Pumpkin!

Homecoming 2013

Homecoming 2013.

Last weekend was our district's annual Homecoming celebration. We pack a parade, football game and dance all in one day. And what a gorgeous day it was this year! Our team may not have won a game since 2011, but we know how to throw one heck of parade anyway! You'll probably experience some deja vu here. This is the third time I've blogged about the parade, and it's pretty much the same every year.

Class of 1951.

It's always nice to see the alumni. The oldest group this year was from 1947, but in the recent past I think that they've had some folks as far back as the 30's.

Girl's Lacrosse.

Our football team may be in a slump, but our girl's lacrosse team were the champs this year. 


Here comes Lauren's school. You won't see her in this crowd because she chose to collect candy by the side of the road rather than march in parade.

Shaler Soccer Club.

And you won't see her in this group either. Not only because she's collecting candy by the side of the road, but because she also retired this year from playing soccer.

 Syria Highlanders Pipe Band.

These guys are always my favorite part of the parade.

 Bag pipers.

I wonder how you become a bag piper? It wasn't offered as an extracurricular activity when I went to school.

 Walking the dog.

There's always lots of dogs at the parade. Maybe next year, we'll bring Cookie!

 Shriner's Rode Rigs.

Big man in a very little car.


The Shriners use these mini vehicles to raise money for local charities.

 Volkswagon Club.

Once again, here's theVolkswagon Club. They sure get around. Every year, I say to Mark that we should offer up our MINI convertible as transportation for one of the homecoming queens (Yes, that's plural. There is a queen for each class, plus the band and the chorus), but I always forget to look into it.

 Fire truck.

All the local volunteer fire departments turn out for the parade.


And these horses turn out every year as well.


This year's homecoming theme was "Game On." The students really outdid themselves. I think this year's floats were the best I've seen.

Mario Kart.

Mario Kart.


And my favorite Pac-man. The ghosts behind Pac-man even rotated!

 Marching band.

And the grand finale - the marching band!

 Color guard.

 Sis boom ba!

 Football players.

These guys had it easy.  They were tossing t-shirts to the crowd.

 Lauren and Emily.

Finally, here's Lauren with one of her BFFs and fellow candy hoarder.

 Lysandra, Sierra and Lauren

More BBFs. Everyone in town comes to the parade, so we got to see all of our friends too.

That does it for another year. Hopefully our football team will win a game before Lauren graduates!