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Tuesday, October 18, 2011


So I haven't blogged in months, but this was just too fun to not share. I love Halloween. I don't love bloody, scary, gorey Halloween - I love cute, spooky, playful Halloween. So here are some of my favorite decorations:

Cinderella's Pumpkin Carriage:

Here is our favorite pumpkin of all time. The girls did this two Halloween's ago. We painted it blue, sprayed it with glittery sparkles, and added embelishments. The accessories include: a lamp topper (on top of the pumpkin), some scrapbooking frames for the windows, and a belt buckle for the door. 4 Small pumpkins with painted wooden drawer pulls make the wheels. It rests on a ugly but functional sqaure frame made out of four kitchen skewers poked and glued into the sides of the tiny "wheel" pumpkins. We also colored a picture of Cinderella and glued her into the window. The girls loved it. So fun!

Halloween Witches:

Sorry that I didn't take too many pictures of how to construct these friendly witches. I have pictures of how to make their heads listed below, but the body was done so off-the-cuff, I didn't think to take pictures. The most important part of the witch is her heavy square bottom. This makes her easy to pick up and move, or sit in a chair. Attached to the MDF square that creates her bum, is a wooden 2 x4 for a spine, and a smaller 2 x4 to make her shoulders. Depending on how you want her arms, you might just want to have her arms be nothing but stuffing. Her hands are gloves filled with rice. Her legs are stockings filled with beans at the feet, and batting in the legs. This gave our witch "elephantitis" - but I'm not fixing it until next year. Here is how to make her face:

1. Buy a styrafoam bust of a head (Hobby Lobby has them for $7, Savers had them for $3) Buy extra foam pieces and toothpick them onto the face where you want more character. We made big eyeballs, a pointy nose, and a bigger chin.

2. Paper Mache over your styrofoam. I skipped this step to save time with my second witch. But it does make it more sturdy for outdoor use.

3. Create a lumpy, bumpy skin texture by painting over your DRY paper mache head, with a THICK mixture of flour and glue, and whatever paint color you would like her skin to be.

4. After her skin is all dry (ours took nearly 6 hours), comes the fun part! Now you get to paint on her make-up and glue on fake eyelashes!

5. Attached a wig and a hat seperately. I did this with toothpicks for the wig (I want to be able to use the wig again, so I didn't glue it on). And I attached her hat with simple sewing pins. We live in a very windy area, so I have to re-attach it once in awhile, but it's mostly secure.

6. Dig or drill out a hole in the bottom of the bust. Insert a long dowel that will attach her head to her body.

7. Put her out for everyone to see!

Pumpkin Candle Holders:

I borrowed this idea from "Family Fun" magazine, which I love. It took only minutes to do, and my kids (even my 2 year-old son) loved it. All you need is some glass jars of different sizes (jam jars, peanut butter jars, salsa jars - anything you have around the house), some masking tape, and some orange paint.

1. Cut masking tape into the shapes desired for a jack-o-lantern face. Have your kids place them on the jar however they wish.

2. Paint your orange paint over the entire jar. When it is nearly dry, remove the masking tape.

3. Place tea-light candles in the jars and light! We put ours in the bathroom where it can be dark and you get the best "glowing" effect.

Happy Halloween to all!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

An Unexpected $2

My oldest daughter wanted to play her violin out by the road for money! I'm growing a little tired of the money scheming ideas, so I told her "nope." A short while later a phone call I'm on is interupted by her new idea. She came down to the kitchen with a large sign that read: "For Love and Joy" - she has decided to play for free, just for love and joy. The "free" idea I might have expected, but the sign was too cute to ignore. So I let her go outside with it and play her violin out by the road.

A little while later her little sister joined her, and with the combined effort they recieved a little more attention. One passerby, although I tried to refuse it, insisted on giving them each $1. I hugged my girls (for the love and joy aspect), then took them inside for some cold smoothies.

Pretty darn cute. This is the stuff Mom's live for, right?