Wednesday, December 31, 2008


With the holidays soon over I can now look forward to planning a little with the other holidays. I'll be posting in this blog once a month if I can on GPD.
For Christmas I got a special surprise. My dh knows how much I love ghost stories and have several books of them. Well I got two for Christmas... "Ghost Stories of Christmas" and "Haunted Christmas Ghost Stories" both were written by Jo-Anne Christensen. I can't wait to read them.
The great thing about these books is I can put them in my book basket for both Christmas and Halloween. How perfect is that? :D So I think for this month's GPD I will start reading and I know I'll have a hard time putting them down once I start. LOL!
Is there any type of Halloween books you like to read?

Monday, November 10, 2008

Halloween wrap up.

With Halloween now over, it's time to put all the decorations away. Last weekend I put just about everything in boxes. I keep the boxes out for a week because I know that as I go about my daily routine I will find more Halloween decorations and stuff that I missed. Of course I realized that I had my Halloween curtains up in the bathroom. So I will have to take those down today and put away the last box.
Since Halloween is over I won't be posting as much on this blog...perhaps once a month or so. But with Christmas coming up I will be posting on my Christmas blog mostly now. I hope you all had a great Halloween! I'll probably be posting more on this blog at the end of August.

Friday, October 31, 2008


I hope everyone has a safe and happy Halloween. Last night we carved pumpkins. The two older children did each of their own and I did one. I also roasted the pumpkin seeds...though I think I'll leave out the seeds if we get a white pumpkin. They don't taste as good as the seeds from the orange ones. The morning I woke to hear the older 2 kids playing in one of their rooms. They were too excited since is was now finally Halloween.
In a flash we busied around the house getting ready for school. I packed their lunches, made them breakfast, packed their backpacks since they needed their swimsuits. The afternoon they will be going swimming while the morning, the grade 6's are putting on a penny carnival. You can get in by giving pennies or some food for the food bank. They also get to have a treat that they are selling so I made sure they had some pocket change so they could get one.
Last night we had them try their costumes. The youngest was in a foul mood and did not like it when I tried to put on her Halloween costume. So I decided that today if she still didn't want to wear it I have a back up plan...she can wear my older daughter's lady bug costume that she wore years ago. Meg seems to hate the witch's costume but didn't mind wearing the bug's costume. So...we shall see which of the two she will choose to wear this evening.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

One more day!

Halloween is tomorrow! The kids are excited and can't wait to try on their costumes. My son wants to be a fisherman. Just have to dig out is fisherman's hat. My older daughter is of course snow white. She likes being any of the princesses...she's a princess nut! LOL! Helps me when I need to think of what to get her for a gift whether birthday or Christmas. The younger daughter is only 2 and she will be a cute little witch. We will just have her go around the block then come home to stay with me to help hand out candy while their dad takes the 2 older ones out for trick-or-treating.

Today when the kids come home from school, we will be carving out our pumpkins. We have a white one and 2 orange ones. That is the least amount we have ever had. Usually we carve anywhere from 4-7 pumpkins. Talk about alot of pumpkin seeds to roast! LOL! I'm just hoping and praying that the weather will be warm enough for them. But as usual here in Canada when it is cold, we just put the costume over their winter coats/snowsuits.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

The Headless Horseman

When Halloween draws near the one story I remember being fond of as a kid was the Headless Horseman. I couldn't wait for the cartoon that Disney did to come on every year. Now there is also a movie about it that Johnny Depp stars in. (Though that is more for the adults.) There are actually many stories of this infamous horseman...New York, Texas...even in Europe where many say the story originates from. Exactly where, I am not sure yet. There is even an account of it by the Brothers Grimm.

In one story a man wanted to ride in a local race, even though he knew his horse really isn't the best. He sets out late, and meets up with the local ghost - a headless spirit on a black stead. The ghost challenges the man to a race, and since the man's a good jockey he manages to win it. The ghost is amused by the whole thing and loans the man his spirit horse for the race. That was the rough but it is out in a book somewhere.

Even in Ireland they have their story. The Dullahan - Ireland’s Headless Horseman. My friend sent me this story years ago. I think it was written by a B. Haggerty. And seeing as some of my ancestors are from Ireland...I thought I'd post a story about it here...

It is said that after sunset, on certain festivals and feast days, one of the most terrifying creatures in the spirit world, the Dullahan, can be seen riding a magnificent black stallion across the country side. Wherever he stops, a mortal dies. Clad in flowing black robes, the Dullahan has no head on his shoulders. He carries it with him in his hand, and because he is endowed with supernatural sight, he will hold the head up high. This allows him to see great distances, even on the darkest night. But beware watching him pass by. You’ll be punished by either having a bucket of blood thrown in your face or you might be struck blind in one eye. The biggest fear of all, however, is if he stops wherever you are and calls out your name. This will draw out your soul and you’ll no longer be among the living. Unlike the Banshee, which is known to warn of an imminent death in certain families, the Dullahan does not come to warn. He is a definite harbinger of someone’s demise and there exists no defence against him - except perhaps, an object made of gold. For some reason, the Dullahan has an irrational fear of gold and even a tiny amount may be enough to frighten him off.

One story from Galway says that a man was on his way home when all of a sudden he heard the sound of horse’s hooves pounding along the road behind him. In dread , he turned around to look. It was the Dullahan. He tried to run, but nothing can outrun the angel of death. Then the man remembered that if he couldn’t outrun him, he could outsmart him. With that, he dropped a gold coin on the road. There was a loud roar in the air, high above him, and when he turned to look again, the Dullahan was gone.

While no-one knows for certain how the Dullahan originated, it is thought that he is the embodiment of the Celtic fertility god, Crom Dubh, who was worshiped by an ancient king of Ireland, Tighermas. Each year, Tighermas sacrificed humans to Crom Dubh, and the usual method was decapitation. The worship of Crom Dubh ended in the sixth century, when Christianity came to Ireland and the old sacrificial traditions went out of favor. But Crom Dubh was not to be so easily forgotten, for it’s said that he then took on a physical form - the headless Dullahan - which means dark man - riding his mighty charger and using a human spine for a whip. And, while this is the way he is most often described, in some parts of Ireland, he drives a black coach drawn by a team of six black horses. They travel so fast that the friction from their hooves is said to set the hedges on fire along the sides of the road. And, no matter how firmly they are locked, all gates fly open to let the Dullahan through.So, if you’re in Ireland this Hallowe’en season, be safe at home by sunset, don’t look out your window, and definitely keep a gold object close at hand!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Picking Pumpkings

Your pumpkins will be in your home for at least a few days, so take the time to give your potential pumpkin some thought.

*Envision the shape of the pumpkin that would best suit your jack-o'-lantern design. Go so far as to draw some simple faces on pieces of paper that you would like to carve in your pumpkin. You can also look online for some ideas or buy at the store stencils.

* Go to your local pumpkin patch or the local grocery store. Don't go too early, since you want your pumpkin to be in good shape when Halloween arrives.

* Make sure the pumpkin you choose is able to stand up. Pumpkins do not have to be perfect; they look a lot scarier if they are weird. Once I had it laying on it's side and used the stem as the nose. Everyone thought it was one of the best ones we carved. :)

* Choose a pumpkin that is big enough to be striking when lit inside, but not so big that it keels over when carved.

* Examine the stem. If the gourd's stem is loose or has evidence of rotting, don't buy it.

* Pick up the pumpkin and examine it from all sides. Reject any pumpkins with blemishes such as white mildew, brown stains or wormholes.

* Knock on the pumpkin. It should sound hollow when ripe.

* Barter for a lower price if you are buying many pumpkins, and if you are buying them close to Halloween.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Stained Glass Pumpkins

Soften and alter the stark light of a jack-o’-lantern’s candle or bulb by using sheets of colored wax paper to create a stained glass-o’-lantern.

Or, if you can’t resist the lure of tradition, you can also use this technique on a classic pumpkin and carve a motif such as an Indian-summer sun. When the light diffuses through the wax paper, it casts a unique glow onto a stoop or stairway.

1. With a serrated knife or mini handsaw, cut a hole into the gourd’s top or bottom; scoop out the seeds.

2. If you’re using a template, draw the design on a sheet of paper and cut out. Tape the drawing to the gourd, and use a needle poking tool or pushpin to trace your design. If you’d rather draw directly on the gourd, use a soft felt-tipped pen, so the nib won’t bruise it, in red or green ink so stray marks don’t stand out. Cut the design out. Use a smooth blade to clean rough edges.

3. Attach colored wax paper to the inside of the gourd with straight pins. If you’re using a candle, make sure that it’s short and sturdy so the paper doesn’t burn. Or to be safer use battery operated lights to place inside. There are lots out there to choose from.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Easy Halloween Wreath

This is so easy to make, the kids can make it up in 5 minutes! So gather them 'round to make this spooky fun Halloween wreath.

You will need:
* 8" styrofoam wreath
* 2-2" strips of orange fabric 44" long
* 1 2" strip of black fabric
* 12" long Metallic trim (optional)
* 1 yucky rubber spider
* Craft glue

Do not worry about the type of fabric you are using. It is the color effect we are after, anything that is orange and black will work. Wool, felt, satin, cotton, etc.


Wrap the orange strips around the wreath to cover the base entirely. Glue ends down in the back. Do not worry about raw edges showing. Wrap metallic trim around the wreath in the same manner and bring ends to the back and glue down. This step is optional but I think it gives some extra "snap" to the end result. Tie black strip in a bow and attach at the top with glue. Tie black thread around the body of your yucky spider and hang down from the middle of the wreath. Glue the thread ends in the back of the wreath as well. Let the spider hang free. This is the spider's web. It is so simple and the kids will have fun hanging all sorts of yuckies from the wreath. It also costs next to nothing if you use odd and ends from around the house. Enjoy!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Homemade Face Paint

For those of us who prefer to save a little money and make things rather than buy it here is some homemade face paint you can make.

* 1 teaspoon cornstarch
* 1/2 teaspoon cold cream
* 1/2 teaspoon water
* Food coloring of your choice

Mix the cornstarch and the cold cream together. Add the water and stir. Add the food coloring one drop at a time until it is the shade you want. Do this for each color that you want. Paint on the child's face with a small paintbrush. Store in an airtight container.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Halloween Definitions

Here are some cute Halloween definitions :)

* Coffin: What you do when you get a piece of popcorn stuck in your throat.
* Frankenstein: Hot dog and a mug of beer.
* Full moon: What your repairman reveals when he bends over to fix your fridge.
* Goblin: How you eat the snickers bars you got for Halloween.
* Boogieman: Guy who passes time at a stoplight picking his nose.
* Invisible Man: What a guy becomes when there's housework to be done. Also, see Mr.Hyde.
* Jack O' Lantern: An Irish Pumpkin.
* Jack the Ripper: What Jack does to his lottery tickets after losing each week.
* Mummy: Who kisses the boo-boo after you scrape your knee.
* Pumpkin Patch: What a pumpkin wears when trying to quit smoking.
* Skeleton: Any supermodel.
* Vampire Bat: What Dracula hits a baseball with.
* Zombie: What you look like before that first cup of morning coffee.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Candied Carrots of my favourite vegies. I try different recipes all the time and found one that was tasty. :)
* 3 cups sliced carrots
* 3 Tbsp. butter
* 1 teaspoon brown sugar (optional)
* 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
* 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Cook the carrots until tender. Drain the liquid. Add the other ingredients, stirring well to coat.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Halloween Countdown...week four

Time to look at decor! This is my favourite thing to do...though I think I got the jump on decorating. LOL! I couldn't wait so I did alot of my decorating already. ;)

This Week:
* Inventory the freezer and record the contents. Plan to eat from the freezer for the month of October, freeing up space for party foods and food for the oncoming holiday season! Use your food budget savings to stock up on items for the party or on holiday staples. (Haven't done yet)
* Do a mini freezer cooking session and put 5-10 entrees in your freezer. Use these meals on busy fall evenings with sports practice, football games, or just relaxing with family. (Haven't done yet.)
* Start now to buy one bag of Halloween candy or treats for the Trick or Treaters. If you buy a little each week is much easier on the budget. (Already have some candy put away)
* Do a quick declutter this week so that your fall decor will sparkle. (Check)
* Decorate for fall this week. (Got most down already)
* Don’t forget your front porch or entry. Give it a quick clean and add some pumpkins, scarecrows, or other fall decor. (I did clean up the front porch outside but I didn't decorate. People tend to either destroy or steal things so I'm concerned it will happen.)

Monday, October 13, 2008

Hot Apple Cider.

As the cold winter months approach, hot apple cider sounds better and better. Of course you don't have to stick with the usual can try different kinds. I have saskatoon berry cider and cranberry/raspberry cider. definitely helps keep warm these bones. :)



* 1 1/2 gallons Apple Cider
* 2 whole cinnamon sticks
* 5 cloves
* 1 large orange, sliced thin with peel left on
* 1/2 lemon, sliced thin with peel left on
* 1/2 cup sugar


In large pot, combine cider, cinnamon sticks, cloves, orange and lemon slices, and sugar to taste. Serve hot.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

To all Canadians, I want to wish a happy Thanksgiving. I hope everyone pauses to appreciate and are thankful. I am thankful for the time we had with my FIL. It's one year ago today that he died. I pray he is now at peace and no longer has to suffer any more.
We had the usual big turkey dinner. It was just the five of us this year. Everyone seems so picky about what they like and don't like. So I just told them..."I'm cooking what I am and if you don't like it you can go hungry and maybe it will make you think more and appreciate what we do have." Thankfully this year I only had to fight with one of my daughters to eat. One of them actually didn't whine or complain. *sigh* I started this morning for a couple hrs. and then paused to head off to church and drop off food for the food bank. Then once back home, finished cooking/making everything that was planned for the dinner. Trying to keep the kids out of the kitchen when they are hungry is a chore in itself! LOL!
So once everyone chowed down and was almost finished eating, I was actually able to sit down myself and eat. *phew* It was delicious. So dh then shortly after, fell asleep on the couch and I had to clean up and put everything away. It's hard to wash dishes when your 2 yr. old daughter is playing in the water and trying to drink it. *yuk* So I managed to get most of the dishes washed. I'll wait till the kids are in before I tackle the rest of them else I'll have more of a mess to clean up when I'm done! LOL!
I'm taking a break at the another hr. I'll get back to it. A woman's work is never done!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Witch's Mix

This fun mix takes only five minutes to prepare, looks great on the table, and taste terrific. It's great when you are in a jam and don't have much time to make something or need to make something in a jiffy.

* 1 cup popcorn (or Cracker Jack's)
* 1/2 cup candy corn
* 1/2 cup small marshmallows
* 1/2 cup black jelly beans

Mix all ingredients together in a colorful bowl. Makes 8 servings.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Halloween Hangman

Do you love playing the hangman game? Here is one for Halloween! Have fun!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Halloween Countdown...week 3

This is the week for planning your party menu, treats, and any special Halloween meals as well as freezer meals for when you are too busy to cook.

Things to do...
* I don't have to worry about anything to do with getting ready for any parties...not having one.
* Finish picking up all decorations. There’s plenty out in the stores by now. (Got pretty much all of it. Just picking up the odds and ends if I see something I like that catches my attention.
* Food is the focus…try out a party recipe or two this week..better to test before serving. (Since I'm not doing any parties, I have decided to focus the food geared towards Thanksgiving since it is next Monday. I have all I need to make the Thanksgiving dinner.)
* Party favors and goodie bags.(Not for any party but I have started to buy candy for the trick-or-treaters)
* I'm still working on getting the rest of the Halloween costumes together.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Thanksgiving...10 days left!

For us Canadians, we have Thanksgiving the second Monday of we have 10 more days! My son is excited because he love the big meal. We found turkeys on sale so we got 2 of them...(the other one is for Christmas.) We will have some of the pickled beets I made, stuffing and deviled eggs. I don't know if dh will make his own special stuffing but I will make the one I like. (I don't like his). I still need to pick up a few things this weekend for the dinner but it's not much left to get.
It will only be the five of us this year unless my dh invites someone who doesn't have anyone to celebrate Thanksgiving with. His brother and sister that lives nearby will be going out of the province to their mom's for the holiday. There is also a feast/gifting going on there. It will be a year the day before Thanksgiving since my FIL died and their family, being Native Canadians, usually have a feast and gifting a year after a family member dies. It can get expensive. So they will be going to that. The kids were diappointed thier aunt and uncle won't be here but they felt better when I told them they might be here for Christmas.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Halloween Countdown...week two

This week is planning parties and traditions. I'm also going to focus on some cleaning.
Things to do this week:
(X) Copy and print out week two to do list.
() Make invitations. (I'm not doing a party so I will skip all the things to do for parties)
(X) Do a quick deocr declutter. (I already have my fall/Halloween decorations up except for a few left)
(X) Plan the date, time, etc. of any trips to a pumpkin patch. (I am trying to find one. It none around then I'll have to look to get my pumpkins elsewhere. My dh already picked up a white one.)
() Fill out and post to do list for Master Bedroom
(X) Decide on costumes and start purchasing any elements needed. (My two daughters already have is going as Snow White and the other is a Witch. My son wants to be a fisherman. Only have to make fish to attach to his fishing pole and a fisherman's hat left. I don't know if I can find everything I need. I'm looking for pink sneakers and pink shades to complete my outfit.)
(X) Check your gift closet and decor stash for any items bought on clearance last year after Halloween.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Halloween Countdown...week one

This week is the start of the Halloween countdown which will help get things organized and done so I can enjoy Halloween without feeling so rushed. This week is for planning, calendars and lists.

(X) Promise to spend at least 15 min./day this week to get organized
(X) Set up Halloween/Autumn planner in a notebook or 3-ring binder.
(X) Print a cover and spine pages and insert in clear view binder. Add section deivders then add blank lined pages for any notes, records, etc.
(X) Make or designate a planning calendar and place in binder in proper section
(X) Traditions or events will be the same...the usual decorating, making costumes, carving pumpkins, toasting pumpkin seeds, and the usual trick-or-treating. I haven't found anything new to add to our usual traditions.
(X) Planning a party? No so I won't have to worry about that part.

Most of the decorating is up now. I finally found some magnetic strips and washers for my clipboard countdown and was able to finish it today.
My youngest daughter wants to be a witch, my older daughter wants to be snow white and the son wants to be a fisherman for Halloween. I have both my daughters costume and most of my son's ready. Not quite sure what I will dress up as yet.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008


I couldn't wait. I usually start decorating in a week or two but this past weekend I started to put up some decorations for Fall/Halloween. The kids don't mind as they are excited and can't wait for Halloween to arrive. I will do most of the decorating. The window clings will go on almost last. The last ones are the purple and orange lights that my dh will put up around the living/dining room for me since he is much taller and can reach easily up where the ceiling and wall meet. :)

I also started a little earlier for the Halloween countdown than planned. So...for the Pre-Halloween countdown...I wrote down all the rooms I will be working on during the countdown, then went around to each room and wrote down what needed to be done in each room. The room that will be the hardest is the master bedroom. It seems the family like to dump things in my room so now I will have to go through everything and try to find a place for it all.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

When to start...

I was going through my Halloween binder today and decided to see when the Halloween countdown will start. I see that people will be starting on September 21st this year for the six weeks but I will have to start a week earlier...which is September 14th because I have an extra week in there do's the Pre-Halloween Countdown assignments. I saw at the Dollarama store they are starting to bring out the Halloween decorations. So next month I'll be taking a trip there. I figure they should be done putting out all of them by then.

Monday, August 11, 2008

GPD for August...

Well, I couldn't wait for GPD day to arrive. LOL! Can't help it...I just love Halloween. So I have printed off the Halloween Countdown which you can find here... . I also revamped my binder and purchased page protectors for it. I also made new section dividers. Once I get my printer fixed I can print off more things for the binder. I've also found some Halloween cards from the past several years. I think I will have to display those when I decorate next month. I figured since I do it with Christmas cards, then why now Halloween ones. :D

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Clipboard Craft

I'm working on a Halloween Clipboard craft. I took an average sized clipboard, painted it black, then used some Halloween scrapbooking paper, stickers to decorate it. On it I put a couple of washers and on the back of the tags with single diget numbers I put magnetic strips so it will stick to the washers. As a finishing touch I put some orange, silver and black ribbon to loop through the hole on the top. It hangs wonderfully. My kids liked it so much, they told me they wanted to make one of their own for their room. LOL! So I guess the next time I get some extra money, I'll be heading back to the dollar store to pick up more supplies so my kids can make one of their own. :D