Category Archives: halloween

Look at that dog!

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Last night was my small town’s annual Halloween parade. We go every year – local businesses open up to trick or treaters, and afterward there is a parade through town with firetrucks & marching bands and social clubs throwing candy to spectators. It’s something I have been doing since I was a kid, and it;s always fun. This year however, there was an added bonus.

In addition to the previously mentioned groups, individuals can walk in the parade and show off their costumes. you will see a lot of regular, store-bought costumes, along with some really creative ones. This year, the best I saw was a kid dressed as a Lego man. I don’t have a photo, because I was so mesmerized by how perfect it was that I forgot I had a camera.

One staple of these parades is dogs in costumes. You will see dogs dressed as Steelers, dogs as bumblebees, dogs as princesses. One year, there was a tiny Cinderella in a carriage being pulled by dogs. This year, there was a Cruella de Vil with a bunch of dalmatians. And being the dog lovers that we are, if you sit anywhere near us, you will hear repeated, excited cries of, “Look at that dog!”

Toward the end of this year’s parade, I saw a cute dog heading our way in a tutu and fairy wings. I pointed it out to the girl & her friend, knowing they would love it. But then it got a little closer and I noticed that Wait! That’s not a dog! And those of you that know me will understand how much it pleased me to see what it really was:

Yes, my friends – that is a goat. A Tutu Fairy Goat. The only thing that would have made it better for me would have been if it had fainted from my camera flash. Best goat ever.

And as a bonus, her’s my little Flamenco dancer:

And my insane son:

(he almost didn’t wear it bevcause it was supposed to rain and apparenty wearing one of those in the rain can cause drowning. Or something)

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This time I really mean it!

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You know – every time I post a new entry, I think to myself, “See – that was easy! I am going to blog every single day from now on!” And I totally mean it at that moment. And that night, something will happen that makes me think, :I should blog about that! Or that! Or that! (or any of the million things that go on in my life every day). But then the next day rolls around and I am tired, or cranky, or crazy-busy and I think, “OK – I couldn’t do it today, but I will blog tomorrow for sure. And the tomorrow rolls around and either a) I am as tired/cranky/busy as I was the day before, b) I can’t remember the million things I wanted to talk about, or c) I remember them, but suddenly they seem uninteresting and stupid.

So anyway…Hi! Here’s what’s been going on lately:

1. We brought the puppy home! Yay! We went through several (hundred) names before we finally settled on Charley. It suits him. He’s really cute and sweet and lovable and a big pain in the ass. I totally forgot about the getting up at all hours to take them out and the incessant whining. The whining/crying/screaming as if being murdered was the worst part, but luckily, he has grown out of that (thanks to my twitter friends for reassuring me on that). He still gets up to pee in the night, but it’s down to once. Still – interrupted sleep = me being even more forgetful and spacey than normal. Good times. Behold the cuteness:

2. Halloween! We went to the annual party that my niece Scabs throws. It’s my favorite party of the year. Mainly because we are an evil bunch who use Halloween as an opportunity to torment and ridicule each other. If you have ever done something embarrassing – it will be used against you on Halloween. One year, we all dressed as Scabs. One year (the year of the punching the crackwhore story), someone came as Drunken Poolrat Gina and someone else came as Beaten Down Crackwhore. This year, I went as Scabs. Now, it may seem repetitive, since we went as Scabs before, but this time around, I went as Scabs looking how she did when she earned her nickname. See – many moons ago, Scabs worked at a bar and she invited mr b and I to the bar’s Halloween party. Well, she had been drinking all day and by the time we got there, she was sitting at the bar, dressed as a clown, makeup smeared, cigarette dangling from her mouth and she croaked at us, “Where in the HELL have you been?” So from then on, She became Scabs, the Chain-Smoking, Hard-Drinking, Pissed-Off Clown. Thus:

Scabs (with a scary Nanny McPhee in the background):

Blind Ref:

Flapper (when she told her firends she was going to be a flapper, they all asked, “Who’s Flapper?”)

You’re fired!

Snooki was there, too:

3. Football season is over! I repeat – football season is over! Finally a break from the constant cheer and band practices, games on both Friday and Saturday/Sunday, and driving all over creation to get to them! All season, I couldn’t wait for this moment. And yet – don’t tell anyone I said this, but I think I’m a little sad about it.

4. And speaking of football, our high school is getting a new stadium, and the last game in the current (70+ year old) one was a big event, with players from the very first game, alumni parties and former cheerleaders and band members on the field to participate. I joined up with the alumni majorettes and expected that we would be doing a simple salute to SSB & alma mater. Imagine my surprise when I got to practice before the game to discover we had an entire routine to learn. It was insane, but fun. And the boys won, meaning we won the very first and very last games in the stadium. Unfortunately, I put mr b in charge of taking photos, so I ended up with 65 shots of the fireworks and the backs of the heads of the people in front of him, but no really good shots of my super twirling skills. Sigh.

The closest thing to an action shot that mr b got – note the lack of zooming and the partial head in the foreground:

The boy and me on the field together. I love that he wasn’t embarrassed that his mom was twirling.

5. Unrelated to anything else I have been talking about, I left my checkbook on the table yesterday morning, after writing one for the kids’ school photos, only to come home last night to discover that the girl had written herself a check for $1000.

6. Finally – go here and help the kids.

A Halloween Tip

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It’s fine if you are handing out treats – really, it is. There are valid reasons not to. It can be a pain. It’s tiring. It costs a lot of money these days (especially in this neighborhood that gets several hundred kids every year). So I won’t judge you if you aren’t participating.

HOWEVER….If you aren’t handing out candy on Trick or Treat night, hanging around outside in your yard raking leaves? Just makes you seem like kind of a douchebag.

Just a tip.

Scary

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I’m still all discombobulated from all the traveling and I’m having a hard time concentrating on coming up with something to say, so in honor of Halloween, let’s talk about random scary stuff.

Movies:
I was a teenager when the Michael/Jason/Freddy movies were in their heyday and I loved them. The scarier and gorier the better. Sure – they scared me in the sense that I would jump or hide my face, but I didn’t take that fear home with me. Now, I don’t’ love them as much. I’m not scared, exactly, I’m just not interested. I still like the psychological thrillers, but I can live without the gore.

When I was a kid, though, there were a few movies that scared me shitless. They used to show scary movies on Sunday afternoons and one week, my mom was out and my dad was outside working in the yard. I was watching TV and a movie called Let’s Scare Jessica To Death came on. It was a stupid, low budget, very bad movie, but I was little and it scared me shitless. To this day, every time I make dinner and see raw meat, I can hear the whispers of “It’s blood, Jessica.”

The other movie that creeped me the fuck out was Magic. Dude – that movie was freaky. To this day, I can’t stand ventriloquist dummies. Shortly after I saw this movie, I stayed over at a friends house and her mother was a big antique collector, so their house was all full of strange things. And after we went to bed, I had to get up and go to the bathroom. And as I walked through the house, I glanced at a rocking chair by the window and in the moonlight, there was a fucking evil, murderous dummy. Freaked me out so bad, I woke the whole house up.

The scary movies I loved and still do were The Shining, Alien(s), The Thing, and The Omen.

Haunted Houses:
The first haunted house I visited was actually set up inside a mall. My aunt and her friend took me and the friend’s kids (my friend Milo and his brother Fatso). Milo and I were big scaredy cats and lost our minds. My aunt had to threaten the people working in it to leave us alone and let us get out, since we were choking her in terror. Fatso, however, who was probably about 6 at the time, was trying to karate chop every werewolf and vampire he saw. As a teen, I loved them, though. I went to every haunted house and hayride I could find. They were scary, but exciting. And it didn’t hurt to go with a boy – it gave you a reason to hang on. But now, as an adult, I have no interest whatsoever in haunted houses (other than the Disney version, which is not scary). I’m not scared, exactly, but I am a reactor and if someone jumps out at me, I am afraid I will either jump out of my skin and have a heart attack, piss my pants, or lose it and punch the monster (or perhaps the person I am with) in the face.

TV:
When I was little, Scooby-Doo used to scare me. I’d wake up early when my parents were still in bed and go downstairs and watch. And then I’d hide under the covers until someone else woke up.

When I was pregnant with the boy, I was a big X-Files fan and the episode Home came on and I had to leave the room. It probably wasn’t scary to the normal person, but to a crazy, hormonal pregnant woman? OMG. I had nightmares.

Bats:
One time, Tee and I were getting ready to go out and I had just gotten out of the shower. I went to get dressed and as I reached into a drawer to get some underwear, I discovered that sleeping nestled among my unmentionables, was a bat. A freaky, squeaky, smelly, infested-with-god-knows-what, disgusting bat. I had a heart attack, died, came back to life, had a another heart attack, then called my grandfather. He came down and put on gloves and pulled piece by piece of lacy lingerie out of the drawer, looking completely freaked out and like he was going to throw up, then grabbed the bat like it was a fuzzy little no big deal kitty or something and chased Tee and I around the house with it for a while. Good times.

Scary Stories:
When I was little, the older neighbor boys used to like to scare me and their little sister with creepy stories. Eventually, my mom had to call their mom about it because I couldn’t sleep. It was the Mary Worth one that did me in. To this day, I prefer not to have a mirror in the room I sleep in. Mirrors by day are fine, but by night, they still creep me out a little.

Scary places:
As a teen, the place to go to scare yourself shitless was Quaker Cemetery. Even in the daylight, there was something very eerie about it. There were lots of stories about strange things happenings. As soon as you would walk through the gates you get a strange, scary feeling. One time, a friend and I were there and heard what sounded like a girl or woman crying. We got the hell out and I have never been back.

Ghostly encounters:
I’ve only had one paranormal encounter and it wasn’t really scary. It was the week after my great-grandma (Nana) died. Nana was in her late 80s when she died. She had a bad hip, so she used to come down the stairs one at a time. The house was old and the stairs were creaky. When she would come down, there would be a long, then short creak for each step she descended. The dog would come halfway down and then wait, then go the rest of the way and wait. Once she got down the stairs, he would trot to her chair, wait until she sat, then sit on her feet.

So a week or so after she died, I was in her house alone. I was feeling very sad, since I took her death really hard. Suddenly, I got cold, for no reason. It wasn’t particularly cold out side, but I felt a draft. I grabbed a blanket and laid down on the couch. A second later, the dog (who had been upstairs) came halfway down and stopped. I got a little weirded out, but nothing like when I heard the creaking. CREEEAAAAK CREAK. CREEEAAAAK CREAK. Every single hair stood on end and I felt paralyzed. I swear, I didn’t breathe the entire time. There were enough creaks to account for half the steps, then the dog came down the rest of the stairs. More creaks. Finally, the dog ran in to the living room and waited beside Nana’s chair. And suddenly I didn’t feel scared anymore. I felt comforted. Then, about 30 seconds later, he sat down at the foot of the chair, like he was sitting on her feet. And then it was just over. I didn’t feel cold or scared, but I felt really tired ad went to sleep. I never told anyone about it for years, because I was afraid they would think I was crazy.

What Scares Me Now:
Spiders. Typical mom fears. Paying bills. Michael Jackson. Heights (not really heights, exactly, but the fear that I will lose my mind and hurl myself over the edge of the height. Because I am crazy.) The Burger King. Sarah Palin.

I Hate It When Vacation Is Over

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Dudes! I am having such a hard time writing anything after being away. I’m having a hard time doing anything, really. Especially if it involves cleaning, laundry, unpacking, cooking, working or eating healthy. I’m rocking the lay around and drink beer stuff, though. I am having a serious case of VacationCanNotPossiblyBeOverAlready.

So, you know how when you visit someone that just got back from vacation and they tell you all about it and show you photos and bore you to tears. Yeah, well. . .sorry.

I’m pleased to report that I am now on a huge streak of two vacation without punching anyone the face. That’s always good, right. Though, I guess it would have given me something interesting to talk about, no? If it helps, I wanted to punch people in the face.

Like the guy who tried to blatantly cut in line while the girl and I were waiting to ride the Haunted Mansion. He sort of wandered up and stood next to us. I thought he was looking at the line, or the building or the sign or something and then I heard one of the daughters say “Dad – I think the line is back there.” And jackass dad says, “No – we’re fine! We’re waiting, see?” Oh, Hell no. Of course I spoke up and said, “If you’re waiting for Haunted Mansion, you can wait back at the end of the line.” He got pissed and started to say something, but his embarrassed family pulled him away.

And speaking of line jumpers, it really pisses me off when one or two people wait in line and then when they get close, the other 12 people in their party come barging to catch up. That pisses me off. I can understand how an elderly person might have a hard time standing or that a young child might have to take a bathroom break in a long line, but 14 Brazilians in their 20’s? Not so much. For some reason, it always was the Brazilians. I can only assume that in Brazil, they have a far different definition of line etiquette.

And then there was the asshole in Epcot, who started mocking me for some reason. NO, seriously – he was mocking me! As in, repeating what I was saying in a weird, childish, mocking voice. He was the one I wanted to punch the most, but I really didn’t want my photos to include one of me being escorted out of the park, so I refrained.

All in all, it was a great time. Of course, I love Disney so I always have a great time there. But we had a lot of fun, the girl rode some “big” rides now that she’s a little taller, we ate some awesome food, walked eleventy bajillion miles, went to the Halloween party, did some swimming, got knocked down by a giant 6-foot wall of water at Typhoon Lagoon and just generally enjoyed ourselves. Yay.

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After a week of vacation recovery, we had Scabs’ Annual Halloween Bash. This is my favorite party every year. This year, there was no one dressed as anyone else in attendance (we’ve all been too busy to plan it this year), but we still had fun. The girl and I wore our Disney costumes, the boy wore some goofy mask (he’s that age now) and mr b left his costume in the car because he’s a big loser. There were political costumes of course – aimed at driving my conservative SIL batty, because that’s always fun. But Weenie had the best costume – she was Lucy from the candy factory episode. She is all kids of awesome.

Oh, also – my head actually caught on fire at one point in the night. It was about 2:00 am and I was highly flammable. I put myself out while everyone else looked stupid.

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Oh – and Thursday morning, we leave for Awesome Company’s Annual Long Weekend of Drunken Debauchery, Massages and One Long Boring Meeting. As always, I am looking forward to it, because the debauchery and massages more than make up for the meeting. This year, we’re headed back to my favorite of all our retreat locations. The only bad part is that I now have to find something to wear. I hate that part. If I could wear jammies the whole time, it would be the most awesome work week ever.

Anyway – some photos:

We are SO the Griswolds sometimes…

Her favorite princess:

Getting ready for her princess makeover – she loved every minute of it:

Her fairy godmother in training, getting her ready:

She told me she felt special – like a princess:

Contrary to how they act half the time, they love each other…

What a cute smile! The boy’s not bad, either!

Cutest. Jedi. Ever.

Dancing in the parade – the girl’s got moves:

The Whispering Canyon Cafe is a fun restaurant – the boy especially loved the Coke as big as his head:

Ketchup!

Oh yes, I did. Just call me Ho White: