30 September 2009

Halloween Party Invitation Idea

So last year, we used a Martha template and made our own spin on the "finger in the box" invite.  Here's our version!!!  And a couple other pics from last year's party.

In other news, my friend Vanessa (for whom I hosted the shower I blogged about) gave birth to a healthy 7.5lb, 20'' baby boy named Elijah Emlen yesterday at 3:30 PM.  He is a doll!  I am so proud of her and her new little family.  Keep them in your prayers ladies! 

We used Tanner's hand as a mold. And yes, we burnt the edges on like 16 different invitations :)

"Just A Reminder"

I don't know how well you can see them, but I wore those "Wild Eyes" contacts that are totally white.  It was really scary!  But very very cool.

I got to rent a costume from the local theater.  I don't really know what I was but I dubbed it the "dead queen."

Here's a few random pictures from our party:

We're going to host one again this year, although it will be more of a joint effort.  We are toying with the idea of doing dessert/bonfire over at a friends house.  That should be fun.  Any of you who are near northwestern Montana -- feel free to come on by! :) 

I still haven't decided on invitations for this year, but I'm thinking about getting some smaller white pumpkins, carving a simple Jack-O-Lantern face, and then sticking a note to it and leaving them lit on people's doorsteps who live in town.  Cool idea?  It would be a lot of work but wouldn't that be fun to get???  Hey, at least its not a flaming bag of poo :D 


It was a TOTAL success.  I even took pictures of it.  haha.  I'm such a dork.

Here's what was on it:

-  Artichoke hearts
-   Lots n' LOTS of garlic
-  Plum Tomatoes
-  Red onion
-  Olive Oil
-  Chicken
-  Rosemary and basil
-  Parmesan, Mozzarella, and Feta cheese
-  Alfredo sauce (just a little bit)
-  We used 2 different crusts to see which was better; a precooked boboli (total crap) and then the roll out kind in a can (HEAVEN IN A CIRCLE)

I think I might make another one tonight!!!

29 September 2009

Isn't she lovely?

Isn't she wonderful?  Look at that hooked nose....those glowing yellow eyes...the batting eyelashes.  What a lady.  What a night.  And with that...I've completely gone off track to bring you this video.  Might as well start your morning off right:

Replay as needed

Now that you're pumped for Tuesday, lets start this off with a little disclaimer.  I had never built a 6' tall witch before last Halloween.  I will tell you that there are probably much better ways to do this that we didn't think of.  Some supplies will take you places you never thought you'd go.  Or maybe you have, you naughty thing, you.  Without further ado,  I give you GERDIE. 

STEP 1:  The framework

We used a simple PVC frame..and really, its up to you how tall, broad, hunched over, or what you want your witch to be doing.  Ours was pretty thin PVC so that it was easier to cut and work with.  You'll need to buy the proper joints, which are wiht the PVC as well, just make sure that you get the right size.  We got it perfect the first time had to make a few trips back.  Once you're home and have all the PVC you need, you can sketch out a rough draft of what stance you want your witch in.  We chose to hunch Gerdie over so that she could be stirring her cauldron.  After you figure that out, start cutting the PVC and fitting it together in the shape of her skeleton.  We didn't really do it to the scale of a normal human being, obviously...but it looks cool either way.  You could even make a little midget witch or something.  Or a leprechaun!! ha. 

Here is a picture of her framework.  We were able to follow a few tutorials online as well.  I'll see if I can't scrounge up some links for you.

Obviously at this point, you won't have the head or the hands done....I apparently brought the wrong memory card to work to put the pictures on........oh ladies, I am so unprepared!  :D  I will post the correct pics tonight. 

I bought a basic styrofoam head off of Ebay...one that had minimal characteristics but looked creepy enough to be a witch's face.  I actually think it was a male mannequin face. 

Step 2:  Girdie's Face

MMMMK.  Here's where the supplies get interesting.   First you'll need stuff to make paper mache, and then you'll need a little something called liquid latex.  Prepare enough beforehand, and you can get it offline.  Don't, and you can go down to your local sex store and buy it there.  That's where I bought it.  Expect a really weird look when you say "I need some liquid latex for a Halloween project I'm working on.  Enough to cover a face." 

Yeah, just be prepared and order it offline.  Trust me :)  Or maybe....some of you have some around the house already?? haha.  Oh, and another word of advice, don't leave the can sitting out when your friends come over.  No matter what you say, they WILL not believe that you were just using it for the witch. 

Ok, so mix up your paper mache and cover the styrofoam head with newspaper all over.  Let that dry, and then do the same thing but with paper towels.  Really soak those babies.  Now is when you start moulding the face shapes.  Obviously the nose is not already shaped like a witch's nose, so build up paper towel until you get the desired effect.  It may take you a few hundred times, but you'll get it down to how you want it.  Now, we added a wart to the side of her nose as well, you will want to do this after the nose dries a little bit.  You can either use a rolled up little bit of paper towel, or find something wart-shaped.  I think we used a bean.  We took tiny bits of paper towel and built out a chin and lips for her as well...you just have to really get it all soaking in the paper mache mix and mold it together.  You can take tiny tiny pieces of paper towell and shape wrinkles and eyebrows and make her forehead look like she's scowling too.  You'll see what I mean in the picture.  Oh, and add some wrinkles to the neck too!

Ok, so let that dry overnight, and the next morning, come and paint on your liquid latex.  You might want to put on a few coats.  This stuff really stinks too, so open a window.  How do people get off on that stuff!?  I don't get it.  Once it dries, you'll notice it looks more smooth and...well, like a face!  Next you want to add your paint.  We used a hunter green color, but you could go for more flesh tones if you want.  Just personal preference! :)  Paint 2 to 3 coats on until you're satisfied with how she looks.

STEP 3:  The Eyes

So this is something we actually just did on Sunday night haha.  I wasn't satisfied with her 1-dimensional painted on eyes (though you can certainly do this, especially if you're an artist).  We went to Target and found these "gummy cocktail chillers" (I found them in the Halloween candy aisle).  I can't find a link to them on target.com so here's a picture from flickr of someone who got them  so you know what to look for.

We used the yellow eyes because they looked a little more realistic.  So Tanner took scissors and cut them down to fit to scale on the socket.  We didn't dig out a hole in the styrofoam but made it look like they were inside of her head...if that makes sense haha.  I used epoxy to glue the piece of eye to the socket, and then gave her some fake eyelashes.  After those dried, we painted 5 coats of clear fingernail polish on the entire eye, making it look shiny and real. 

STEP 4:  The Hands

I actually found the original tutorial I used for these, this guy is a pro at explaining them so I'll let you read about making the hands here.

After you've made your hands, make sure and shape them how you want them to be, and paint them with the same color you used for the face. Oh, and we added long, fake fingernails and painted them black.  That was a pretty cool touch.

STEP 5:  Body shape

I'll be honest, we really jimmy-rigged this part haha.  We took an old body pillow and poked holes in the case, put some twine through, and tied it to the top of the frame and down around her butt area.  I stuffed plastic bags, trash bags, etc on top of her shoulders and taped them down with duct tape.  She's a real mess under her garments :)  You can use what you see fit, chicken wire and more paper mache, whatever ya wanna do.

STEP 6:  Clothing

We went to the thrift store and found a black graduation gown, got some black fabric, a gross black mesh thing from Walmart, and bought a long gray wig with a witches cap.  You can do what you want to on this as well.  I loved this part though, easy and fun to come up with things to make her look creepy haha.  I will tell you though, its easier to dress her and THEN put the hands on. 

I hope this helps a bit...I know it's a ran together tutorial but leave questions you have in the comments!

Oh, here's a couple more pics of the table :)  Not totally decorated yet though...

28 September 2009

Our Life In Pictures. Just in case you're curious :)

Happy Monday!

Since I know I could definitely use some humor on a Monday, I thought I'd post these real album covers that are just hilarous. 

In other news, I have a little story for you.  So 2 weekends ago, Tanner and I went to Spokane for the night for my birthday.  We went shopping (I was ON THE HUNT for some boots and a cute purse)  and I came across a scent called "Noir" in Victoria's Secret. 

I don't know what is in this but it is  the best scent I've smelled in a really, really long time.  Soft, pretty, not overwhelming.  and it even comes in a vintage-looking perfume bottle with the little ball thing you squeeze on the end.  SO cute.  It's 40.00.  Normally I'd probably be ok with that, but between wanting boots and wanting a purse and wanting decorations for the house, it was just a little much.  Tanner told me to get it anyway (what a sweetie) and that I'd probably like it way better than the body spray because it would last longer.  (Another story worth getting into on some other Monday:  How Tanner unknowingly was a perfume salesman for a week). 

So I went up with the perfume and the body spray.  This is where I get stubborn.  The cashier, we'll call her Miss Spray Tan, starts laying on the sales pitch pretty thick. 

Miss Spray Tan:  Well, like, the perfume will last you a lot longer.  Are you sure you, like, don't want to get that instead?

Me:  It's 40.00 and I'd rather just spend 22.00 but thank you

Miss Spray Tan:  But like, you'll use the body spray a LOT faster.  And like, it comes in a prettier bottle.

Me:  (mentally) REALLY....are we really still talking about this...really???!

Miss Spray Tan:  So are you sure you don't want the perfume??

Me:  I'm sure...I'm just going to go with the body spray for now, my mistake to make  (mentally again)  and if you don't stop pushing me I'm going to throw the body spray at you!

Miss Spray Tan:  Well, alriiight.

Can I just tell you how frustrating it is to have someone A). persistently sell you something and B). not know how to sell haha

Anyways, I gotta admit though....I spray that body spray on me at least 5 times a day.  Is that weird?!  Maybe she was right all along.  :D  Maybe I'm just too stubborn for my own good.

Ok, Ok, here's the funny album covers.  I'll see ya'll tomorrow with updated pictures of Gerdie!!  We made her some new eyeballs last night....out of gummy cocktail decorations, fake eyelashes, clear fingernail polish, and epoxy.  Woohoo!!

27 September 2009

Flauntin' my Haunts

I couldn't think of anything clever for the title of this entry....hhhhhh.

I'm not really flaunting, since I've been way impressed by all the blogs I've seen with Fall decor.  I am amazed!  You gals are SO talented.  Sorry for the camera quality, by the way.  Someday I hope to get a nice one.  Someday.....until now it's Picnik to the rescue!!  The only beef I've got is with my computer.  SLOW AS MOLASSES.  Frozen molasses, in fact.  Patience is a virtue.

So here's my cozy little home, all decorated up.  I'll probably decorate more, and as I do, I'll update pictures.

Oh, and I will most definitely post a tutorial for Gertie!!  Enjoy ladies.  Happy Fall!!!


26 September 2009

Halloween Decor sneak peek

'Tis the time of year that my creative juices get flowing, the boots and flannel come out, and the hope of not breaking bones while trying to get the Halloween bins out of the attic occur.

Today, I managed to break my vintage sewing machine when it fell from the attic to the concrete garage floor below.  Sad day...but I drowned my sorrows in the 2 massive bins (that probably weigh 1,000 pounds each) filled with the smell of harvest, golden brown and fiery red leaves, black crows, and fake spiders.

Last year, we hosted a Halloween party, and made a 6' tall witch.  I'm currently putting her PVC frame together and getting her ready for the kiddos this Halloween. 

We also went to the local pumpkin patch to pick out some goodies, and I'll post pictures of that as well.  For now, here's a little sneak peek of Gertie....and yes that is my husband putting lipstick on her.  ;)

24 September 2009

Wants and Needs. And an awesome giveaway...

I want.  I need.  Let me break this down for you....

I want to go home and watch 24, paint unfinished furniture, and decorate for fall.

I need to go home and work out until all the persistent little fat cells in my body run SCREAMING for their lives.....

I want to have discipline enough to run every day after work, to cook a fabulous meal in pearls and a cute apron, and have enough time to whip up a cake from scratch.

I need to have someone there to TAZE me everytime I try to get out of physical activity, to learn how to manage my time wisely, and learn how to be Suzy Homemaker meets Betty Crocker meets Dog the Bounty Hunter hehe. 

Take this picture for example.  She looks so under control, her kids are so well behaved.  She's got a clean apron after making a meticulously iced cake for 3 hours.  The dishes are washed, the floor is swept......I could only wish that would be me....if it were me in that picture, the caption would be as follows.....

"Uhhh...yes, poison control?  I'm pretty sure my kids have salmonella"

Anyways, I don't know why I felt the need to share that but its just a thought running through my head today.  I still haven't cleaned up from the baby shower on SATURDAY.  It is now THURSDAY.  Almost 7 whole days since I cleaned the house.  I'm pretty sure the strawberry lemonade is turning into wine somehow.  I'm pretty sure that was mold I saw on a plate near the sink.  Oh dear. 

In other exciting news,  I just started following a FABULOUS blog...so inspirational and honest and real....and she's having a giveaway for her 300th post!  All you need to do is go here and first, take a look around...fall in love with her blog...and then leave a comment.  :) 

Here's whats up for grabs:

$150.00 Anthropologie gift card (I'm so gunning for this one...I need some fab shoes...)

$100.00 package from her boutique (WELL worth checking out, by the way.  I'm trying to convince my husband that I need a few things from there hehe)

$50.00 Restaurant Gift Card

and a sweet little surprise for another lucky reader. 

Well worth the time to enter!!!

Ladies, I will be attempting to start day 1 of physical activity this afternoon.  Complete with friend who has the tazer charged and ready to go.

22 September 2009

Oh, Baby!

So last Saturday, I hosted my first baby shower.  I had such a blast decorating and making yummy cupcakes!  I think I've found another fun side job idea.  Mentally filing that away, along with "dental hygienist, actor, person who picks out music for movies (totally the official title).  Anyway, yes, I'm a bit of a dreamer.  :) 

The beautiful mommy-to-be had picked out a nursery theme of "green and aqua,"  so I decided to mold all the decorations around those colors.   That made it so easy!  I wanted to do something fun for guests as they were arriving, so I decided to set up a "photobooth" outside, complete with a vintage suitcase full of fun props.  I think we had a red feather boa, 2 cowboy hats, some funky glasses, and fake moustaches!  Thanks to my friend Mandy who headed up the pictures and forced everyone to get in on the fun!

To me, this was one of the most fun parts of the day.  To see everyone digging through a suitcase deciding who got to wear the handlebar moustache was priceless.  It was also nice because I was nowhere near done with my thick meringue topping for the yummy cupcakes I made, and it kept everyone outside just a little bit longer :)

I wish I would have gotten a few more pictures of the decorations inside, but someone has to be a Last Minute Lucy!

We made all the decorations that you see, besides the platters of course.  The  tissue paper pom-poms were super easy, and I'm thinking about posting a video tutorial very soon.  The pennant flag banners were made by my oh-so-talented friend Jennifer, you can check out her work at http://www.jennifernicolecox.com/ .  Anyways, here's some pictures of the decorations!

Gone in 60 seconds...cucumber sandwiches are my favorite.

The farmtable I bought 2 weekends ago is really getting some use!  I loved the way everything looked on it.  If I could, I'd sit at it all day and be happy with the sun streaming through the dining room window.  And then I'd sit at it at night while the ambiance of the chandelier would make it take on an entirely different look.  But not right now.  Not tonight.  You know why?  Because it is now Tuesday and I'm in total and complete DENIAL. The shower was on Saturday, and I still have not cleaned out the bowls full of leftover salad, the cups with sticky strawberry lemonade, or the trash that is sitting right in the middle of the kitchen floor.  To be quite honest, I'm a little afraid of my house right now...I wish I had a big rug to sweep it all under!!!

These little guys were too tired to play games, so we found a quiet place for them to nap.

The banner you see above their heads is actually paper on which I had everyone write a quick word of advice for Vanessa.  It turned out to be a very cute idea, and afterward, I punched a hole in it and tied a ribbon through all of the flags so she could thumb through them later.

But back to the picture journey, as I try to forget about the mess, and remember how great the day was ;)  We all enjoyed lunch, and then played a game, hurriedly named "draw a baby with the hand you don't normally write with."  Yes, in all my decorating preparation, I forgot to actually come up with a name and rules; but for a last minute game, it turned out to be hilarious.  Some babies looked unborn, some looked like blobs with eyes, some had amazingly detailed rattles in their hands, and some...well, i'm convinced they were drawn with the right hand ;)   

Here's Jenn working on her baby.  Well, I guess 2 babies since she's about 3 months along! tee hee.

I totally should have won.....look at the detail!  The baby even has buttons on its....skin?  Wow ok, I lose.

We turned to gifts after the laughter subsided, and I got some great shots of Vanessa as she was getting some fabulous gifts :)  The ladies in our church know how to shop! :)  Two that stuck out in particular to me were hats that she received.  These are no ordinary hats, these are hats that I would wear! These are hats that would make your baby more fashionable than you.  http://www.etsy.com/shop.php?user_id=5190354  I suggest you hurry on over ;) 


Ally and I made 2 types of cupcakes for the shower.  Mine were actually from a Trophy Cupcakes recipe, and they were almost like a s'mores cupcake.  Graham cracker crust, chocolate, and TOASTED marshmallow.  I got to use a blowtorch!  My husband's industrial strength blowtorch.  Yes, I had one cupcake casualty.  His little outer wrapper got burned and actually lit on fire without me noticing...until I smelt him.  Poor guy.  At least he got a proper burial in the trash can, underneath eggs and coffee grounds and used paper towels ;)

Ally made white cupcakes with buttercream icing tinted the perfect shade of green.  We made cute little cupcake toppers and set them out!  Without further ado, our cupcakes.  (You might want to grab a napkin before you look at these next pictures).

And here's my favorite cupcake of all, Gus.  He's a sneaky little guy, "supervising.." Uh huh, sure.  He'd supervise one right into his cute little tummy...

After gifts, after games, and after food, we gathered everyone outside for one last picture -- just for fun.  I had such a blast doing this for Vanessa and I hope to do more in the future.  I'll post up a tutorial on the tissue paper decorations and might even put up a recipe for cupcakes!  Thanks for reading!!!!

The "Lil'Hitler 'Stache  ;)

"I drink your milkshake!"