Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Howloween

From our private little corner of the "pup-kin" patch. I hope your Halloween is fun, and safe.

I'll be posting more party pictures, and pooch party pictures soon. Please stay tuned!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Halloween Party 2009, Part 3, More Decorations

Just a quick post tonight, with a couple of pictures, because, to put it mildly, I'm wiped out. I spent the majority of the day getting ready for another Halloween Party - this time for the Golden Retriever group I organize. We've got a meetup coming up on Saturday and have over 100 people coming! Yikes! And here I thought all of my Halloween party planning was done for the year! I guess not!

Today I had several of my assistant organizers come over and we got all of the stuff together for the prizes we'll be giving out Saturday. We made a total of 22 gift baskets! We also got our menu planned, food ordered, and a game plan ready for the meetup. I'm made my list of things "not to forget" on Saturday (only 23 items - so far!) and am getting everything together. Enough about that for now, on to the other party fun.

The kitchen (aka the "general store"), the family room (aka the "haunted lodge"), and my desk area (aka the "taxidermy shop").
On the back wall of the general store I had made personalized "wanted" posters for several past guests and my production crew.
Food included homemade pulled pork (25lbs. of it!) homemade chili, homemade BBQ beans, homemade pigs in a blanket, homemade corn salad, homemade cornbread, homemade green beans with potatoes and bacon, (are you seeing a trend here?) meat balls, mac and potato salad, short bread cookies, veggies, chips, dips, artichoke dip, and stuff I can't even remember right now!
Part of our haunted lodge....

more of the lodge...
every lodge needs a fireplace with dead stuff hanging over it....

and a trophy wall...
heading towards the backyard and saloon area (Shirley made custom saloon doors for our french door - they were AWESOME!)
the taxidermy shop...
what a bargain!
Tomorrow is another busy day for me, a funeral in the morning for my dear friend Sylvia's Grandmother, a visit to the hospital to see my Dad who is having a major test done on his pace maker, a visit with friends in the late afternoon if I can squeeze it in, and an alumni get together for our Homecoming football game in the evening. Whew! I'm tired just thinking about it! I'll try to post more pictures tomorrow, but no promises. They are worth waiting for though, I promise....and I haven't even started on the guests yet!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Halloween Party 2009, Part 2, The Beginning of Decorations

It's all in the details. That's what makes a good party great. Well, that, and a lot of alcohol! Ha ha!

Seriously though, we pride ourselves on the details of our parties, and time and time again that's what people remember. It's not that you had a ton of beer, or never ran out of chicken wings, its that when they turn around, basically every square inch of the house has something going on in it. No stone is left unturned, no skeleton is left unscalped.

I present to you, the beginning of my decoration posts. There will be too many pictures to post all at once, and I'm sure blogger would screw up if I tried. So here goes...The front yard, the entry way, the hallway and the bathroom.

This face became our unofficial mascot for the party this year. My friend Shirley found this image on a belt buckle several months ago when I was looking for something to put on the invitations. He fit our Old West-Ghost Town theme perfectly. This giant version of the face was on our garage door.
The entry to our house...every old west party needs a bloody covered wagon, right?
This little fellow was waiting for guests at the front door.
What would the old west be without Indians?
The full view of the front yard.
Once you entered the front door you were in the Sheriff's office, complete with prisoners begging to get out of jail.
To the left you entered the mine (aka the hallway)
Halfway through the mine there was a bird cage with a faux dead canary, some dynamite, etc.
The mine shaft was lit only by torches, which gave it a great creepy effect.
Once you got to the end of the mine, you got to the indoor-out house. Waiting were three miners, each taking a load off their minds.
Also in the out house were the regulars, giant spiders, a creepy bat....
and even a family of opossums on the roof of the outhouse.
We had a slow version of "Oh My Darlin Clementine" playing in the background of the bathroom (compliments of Pickle's artistry), along with an occasional scream for help. Pretty cool, if I don't say so myself....
Stay tuned for more decoration pictures soon!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Halloween 2009, part 1, In the Beginning

Our Halloween party preparations began in earnest at the very beginning of Sept. with an inventory of all of our stuff. Yes folks, I've got so much Halloween stuff, that it needs to be inventoried each year to prevent me from going out and buy duplicates of stuff that I may have forgotten that I already have. My inventory was 42 pages long. Seriously.

We purchased these 4 panels from a prop house in Los Angeles that was going out of business. We decided that they would be the model for the rest of our ghost town. Of course even they would need some "goring up" as they were a little too cutsie for my taste.
Here you'll see that the rest of the ghost town is starting to take shape.
This piece will eventually turn into our "2 Bit Ho-Tel."
Invitations are always fun too. We like to do something unique and special each year, and of course, something that goes with the theme.
Since our theme this year was an Old West Ghost Town, it was a little tougher than in the past to come up with something appropriate. We settled on cardboard coffins....
...filled with a cowboy skeleton, complete with red bandanna, and cowboy hat. His head rested comfortably on his bed roll, which was the actual invite.
More to come soon!

Monday, October 26, 2009


This is exactly why I had to ship the dogs out for the weekend....

No Kona, this is NOT a new chew toy for you!

A-Z Mondays "K" is for "K-9"

Ok, I'll admit it, I'm taking the easy way out today. Hey, gimme a break, I'm barely over my hangover from our Halloween party Saturday night. Lots and lots of pictures of that will be posted in the next couple of days...but I digress...

K" is for K-9, and this weekend our fur-babies went to visit Aunties K & S. They offered to keep them for us during the last day of decorating craziness, and through the party. What lifesavers they were!

K & S have two pups of their own, so needless to say, their house was full of K-9s! Thank goodness they love dogs like we do!

Here are a couple of pictures of the pups from their weekend sleep over adventures!

Snack time!
Nap time... Jill and Prinnie Kona is happy with a shoe. The sisters - Jill and Harley Pretty-boy Jack. Investigating. Kona ready for his next meal. If you'd like to see what other bloggers are doing for A-Z Mondays, be sure to stop by Jen's blog here.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Down to the wire...

The planning for the party is getting down to the wire now...only 52 hours, and counting. Sure that may seem like a lot of time...but not when you have about 200 things left to do! Yikes! Although a lot of the things we have left to do are quickie items (turn on the music in all of the different areas, make sure all the lanterns are lit, take the skimmer out of the pool, etc.) they are all on a list, so we don't forget to do them. Without my lists, I'd be lost! I remember one year I didn't make a list with all of the food items on it, and low and behold, the morning after the party I woke up to look in the refrigerator and find 48 deviled eggs that never got put out. A family of 5 can't (and shouldn't) eat 4 dozen deviled eggs! Hence, my need for the list...

This will probably be the last chance I have to blog before the party. Tomorrow morning my desk area will get transformed into a taxidermy shop. What can I say, I'm kookie like that.

I hope you all have a great weekend, and I'll check back in after the party!

By the way...this is my newest boyfriend! Gotta love him!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

(Nearly) Wordless Wednesday - Sweet Things

A home made card, and flowers from the kids... A delicious "hot lava cake" dessert from my favorite restaurant....
And sweet, cuddling pups....

(Have you noticed I can never post a "totally wordless" Wednesday? Just call me Chatty Cathy - Lord knows I've been called worse!)

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Here's to many more!

19 years ago today I married my best friend.

He puts up with my dog craziness, my Halloween insanity, my ups and downs, and anything & everything I throw his way.

I was lucky, I found one of the good guys. I am so, so thankful.

Here's to us Hubby! 19 years has gone by in a wink. Here's to many, many more winks.

Monday, October 19, 2009

A-Z Mondays "L" is for Long Lasting Love

Long lasting love is saying it mildly!

Today my parents celebrate 52 years of marriage. Tomorrow Hubby and I celebrate 19 years of marriage. I look forward to someday celebrating our 52nd anniversary. Until then, we will continue to try to live each day as happily as my parents have over the years.

I am convinced that if everyone loved their partner as much as my parents love each other, the world would be a much, much better place!

Happy Anniversary Mom and Dad!

If you'd like to see what other bloggers are doing for A-Z Mondays, be sure to stop by Jen's blog here!

Friday, October 16, 2009

In His Element

I thought I'd share some photos taken of Kona yesterday when we were on a therapy visit to a senior assisted living center. You can tell he is a total ham, and loves going on these visits. We went on our regular Friday visit to the VA Hospital today too, and had a nice time, as usual. I realized that Kona has done over 35 visits in the last couple of months, and certainly seems to enjoy each and every one. I know the people we visit certainly enjoy it!