Thursday, October 28, 2010

Halloween Inspiration - Mad Scientist Lab

Click on over to Brooklyn Limestone for GREAT Halloween inspiration.

Friday, October 22, 2010

BOO! - Pay It Forward

Here is a fun Halloween prank to play on your friends and neighbors. I found this idea over at Anders Ruff and just HAD to do it!

This little treat didn't even cost me that much. I purchased three Chinese takeout containers (.99 cents each) in orange and a bag of black Shredz ($1.99) at the Paper Zone and a bag of mixed candy from my local grocery store ($3.00).

Total cost was $8.00 but I have half the bag of candy and shredz left over. I didn't use all the print outs from Anders Ruff. Just the instructions, door tag and little circular label. The label I cut out and ran through my Xyron machine to make in to a sticker.
The instructions are really simple. You make two (I chose to make three) and deliver them in secret to a neighbors or friends house. The recipient has two days to make copies of the instructions, door tag & labels and deliver them in scret to a friend or neighbor. If there is a door tag on the door, they have already been Boo'ed and you have to deliver to someone else.
Since I took a few days off work between my jobs I snuck up to their doors and hung them on the knobs. The neighbors I left these for sometimes read my blog. So hopefully they discover them on their front door before that happens. :)
This is as fun as pulling up to your local Starbucks and having them tell you the person in the car paid for your drink!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Halloween Art & Inspirtion

First of all, did you check out the CSI Project yesterday for amazing Halloween ideas? This is how I got three items for my Halloween art project below.

So far the only decor in my living room is my mantle. I felt like I needed a little more. I have a blank wall that was just begging for something to be hung on it. The best part? It was totally free!

I already had the three picture frames and burlap. All I needed to do was print out the free wall art, place it in the frame, back with burlap, close it all up and hang it.

I found BOO at Anders Ruff and the Subway Art and Eat, Drink and be Scary at Craftily Ever After.

Thanks to these two lovely ladies, I have great Halloween wall art for the cost of ink. There are soome GREAT inpirations out there in blog land too.

And so much more. I urge you to go to the CSI Project, there are over 200 entires/ideas just waiting to be discovered!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Pumpkins & Feathers

Reposting this today to link up with the CSI project.



Over the weekend we got our dining table sanded and painted with a few coats of glossy black paint. Once I get the final coats on I will show you how it turned out. I am loving it!

In my travels to Micahels for craft supplies for my black and white pumpkins, I spied this great wreath with peacock feathers. Peacock blue is one of my accent colors. I even had a 50% off coupon and I love it against my grey walls. It's hanging over the bar.

I did one more black and white pumpkin in preparation for Halloween. A small white pumpkin with a black fleur di lis.

Here is my black and white pumpkin trio sitting on the sideboard. The first two listed below were inspired by a magazine. All of the craft (fake) pumpkins were orange to begin with and I simply added about three coats of white craft paint and the stems got a coat of my grey wall color.
  • Off With Your Head - Black velvet ribbon held in place with pearl topped push pins. The lettering are glitter stickers.
  • Paisley - Most of the design is puffy paint as I could just not afford little sticky crystals to do the entire design. Grey and black sticky crystals do add a little sparkle though.
  • Fleur di Lis - I just took black craft paint on a Fleur di Lis stamp and stamped it on and then filled in with paint. I think this might need a little bling and I have some sticky crystals left over to may place a few on here.
I would like to add some color in the form of ribbon on the stems. We shall see...

I also bought a bolt of burlap at the fabric store. Several projects to come from that. Today after work I plan to hunt for some twigs to put it in a vase on my bar. I have a few clip on ravens and some sparkly bits I want to tuck in to them.
How are you preparing your house for the fall?

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Halloween Decorating

We actually got most of our Halloween decorations up the last weekend of September. I finished my last minute stuff yesterday before my girly candle party. Not all of our decorations were brought out as we decided on a slightly new direction to go this year. Our goal? Slightly tattered and some what Victorian. We didn't even buy too much new stuff this year which was nice. We have a few ideas in mind for year to build on our theme.

Remember how we used to have a lot more bookshelves in the hallway? In our decluttering efforts we are down to just the books on this shelf. The only thing here that is new is the skull with the brain peeking out. C and a friend were out looking for a skull he could use for this and happened upon this one already cracked. Perfect!

Here is some detail of the some of the items sitting on the shelf. C made me a casket case filled with potion bottles and some very scary looking wine selections. Like Vampire wine. Truly a good red!
I found the label for the Graveyard Spirits here. I just printed it out on paper and used my Xyron to make it in to a sticker. And hey, that brain isn't going to get any fresher!

The pictures hanging over the shelf change as you walk by them. Who knew Great Uncle George had a Beastly side?

Moanin Lisa

The mantle this year has all the same stuff from last year. Don't you think that one bust on the left looks like Vincent Price?

In the dining room you can see my new grey walls too. LOVE! Just ignore the printer in this photo. It's going to live in the credenza below, I just need to get a hole drilled in the back to accomodate the cord. These are the pumpkins I slaved over last month. The photo is actually my grandmother when she was around 3 circa 1920. The lampshade I covered in burlap and added a black gross grain ribbon.

This gentleman visitor just doesn't like my cooking apparently.

The shelf over the garden window in the dining room. A combination of critters, books and other items. I didn't get around to writing up creepy book titles for my books so just took the dust jackets off of books I had that were black. I have seen a trend recently to take book covers off and just have the yellowed pages of several books stacked on each other. Could be a fun way to add to the look. I have more of the flame lights like over the mantle here too. Because of the light it's hard to see they are on.

There used to be this great shop called the Salvage Studio in Edmonds. That is where I bought the Scrabble letters that spell out Halloween. Two of the previous owners have their own blogs, check out Beth and Lisa.

The top shelf of the bar houses the Dan Aykroyd Crystal Head vodka.

Wich apparently this creepy crawley is interestded in tasting.

Knock and enter...if you dare.

We weren't too savvy when we shopped for our condo. Who knew it would be located IN a graveyard?

Conveniently located near a Morgue.

Vampire bats are known to inhabit graveyards. So far we have only found one - but it's BIG!

An inspiration of mine in blog land. If I could only channel Mrs. Limestone. Her blog started out telling the story of their renovation on their early 1900's Brooklyn Limestone. I highly recommend ready the entire thing. She's hugs in to Halloween so check her out. Her decorations for the last couple years have been great and I can't wait to see what she comes up with this year!

If you like the effects on my photos. Check out a free site called Picnik.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Crystal Skulls and Celebrities

OK - let's play catch up shall we? What have I been up to?

C and I are getting ready for one of our favorite holidays - Halloween. The new grey dining room walls are a really great backdrop for our spooky, slightly aged and tattered holiday decorations.

We took a break from decorating a few weeks ago to go in to the city and meet Dan Aykroyd. The reason? To purchase some of his Crystal Head Vodka. Vodka is my distilled spirit of choice. When we found out he was going to be here to sign them we just had to go!

The vodka is quadrupple distilled through Herkimer diamonds and yes it really is sold in a skull shaped bottle. Talk about smooth! Normally I don't do vodka shooters but wanted to taste it in its pure form. Nice!

The next night we headed to the Chateau St. Michelle for the Harry Conick Jr. concert. A birthday gift from my husband. Like last year we sat as close as possible in the cheap seats (pie shaped grass sections on either side of the regular seats). We like the that section better. You can spread out more. They allow you to bring in food and low slug chairs just not alcohol.

We had a picnic of grapes, cheese, chocolate, bread and of course red wine purchased at the winery. Sorry I don't have photos. It rained on us (actually pretty hard at one point) but once Harry was on stage we had a pretty clear evening. The show was amazing and Harry was pretty darn funny!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

New Job

Out of the blue I received an email from a recruiter friend of mine about a job opportunity. I was absolutely not looking.

This job is a GREAT opportunity. Way more money, back in Seattle, I can carpool with the hubs.

All adding up to paying off CC's faster and getting out of the condo and in to a house faster. Not to mention taking that very past due honeymoon.

I told my manager today and it was hard. Way harder than I thought it would be. I have invested a lot of time in my current position and I have been with the company for just over four years.

Because I am the only one that does my job and they will more than likely not fill my position before I leave, I will return a few times after they hire my replacement as a consultant to ensure everything runs as smoothly as possible.

I am really excited about the new position and can't wait to start. The big day is October 25th.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Minimalist Book Sale

In my recent adventure in to minimalism I have been introducted to many individuals online who are living and writing about their lifestyles. I have been reading many of these blogs on a daily basis and following them on twitter.

Karol Gajda is hosting an AMAZING e-book sale through Wednesday October 7 EST. You can get $224 worth of e-books for $27. Click on the link here for your opportunity. For the first 24 hours of the sale he is donating all his earnings to Kiva which provides loans to entrepreneurs in developing countries.

Here are some of the titles in the budle I am excited to read...
  • The Simple Guide to a Minimalist Life by Leo Babauta
  • Smalltopia: A Practical Guide to Working for Yourself by Tammy Stroebel
  • Unautomate Your Finaances by Adam Baker
  • You, Simplified Handbook by Charley Forness
  • The Luxury of Less by Karol Gajda

There are many more. Teh cool thing about e-books is they don't waste paper as you read them as a PDF download on your computer.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Cleaning Up

I know I have been a bad blogger and have started a couple posts that I will get to in the next few days. Got to upload the photos still.

Last night I got home from work and spent several hours (5.5) cleaning my house. I am tired of the stuff stacked around the place that we might get to some day. Frankly, our condo was starting to look like a storage unit. When we had people over, our bedroom was the dumping ground as everything got chucked in to and the door closed.

All this clutter also prevented me from accomplishing things I want to do. Things like, relaxing on the weekend with some knitting or sewing or baking, Enjoying time with the bonus kids. Having enough room to work out. Sitting and watching a movie or reading a book. All without feeling anxious without all the stuff all over the house.

Well - no more!

I cleaned the heck out of my place last night. Anything that did not have a home and was not going to be donated ended up in the dining room. This morning we are going to schlep it all out to our onsite (does not cost extra) storage unit. I would rather have the clutter out there until I can go through it. We do have our storage unit pretty organized and this won't add too much to it. We just don't have to live with it on a daily basis.

For those of you out there looking for more ideas on living simply, decluttering and decorating well, check out these posts....

Remodeling This Life is doing a 31 days of simplicity.

Dear Lillie's decorated her patio for fall in Apple Pie on the Porch. LOVE!

Tightwad has Ten ways to make use of your old magazines.

Rowdy Kittens is talking about Bike commuting with baby.

We started our Halloween decorating last weekend and plan to finish this weekend. Photos to come soon!

Also, some hopefully exciting news. Just putting it out there for positive thoughts. I will find out on Wednesday and will let you all know!