So I'm slowly finding time to chip away at a few props here and there. The four new gravestones received their final coating of polyurethane last night, and are only missing a layer of decorative moss on top before they are complete. I can't tell you how important it is to have new graves for this year. My old ones are a mixture of store-bought gravestones and homemade stones from the days when I didn't know what I was doing. I'm very pleased with the four new ones for this year – they look realistic, which is important to serious home haunters, are protected against the elements (we get a lot of rain in October in MN for whatever reason, so my older stones are really showing their age...), and they have that personal touch that make them uniquely mine. No graveyard puns, play on words, or silly sayings here. I used to go for that stuff a decade ago, but now I cringe whenever I see graves out in people's yards that say: "I.B. Dead," and "I Told You I Was Sick," and "Berry Alive."
Last night I also dug out our costume box and dug around in that for awhile. I'm looking for various items that can be used toward my costume this year. Since my costume has been, for the most part, homemade every year, I try to use what I have on hand while still showing up on the day of the party with a killer costume. I'm real excited about this year's costume, but there are still quite a few logistics to work out. If only I had more time! When people ask why we start putting up our Halloween stuff in mid-September - well, this is why! With two kids and a daycare, plus other commitments on the weekend that always seem to pop up out of nowhere, there is never enough time in the month of October to get it all done. In fact, I'm usually a lot further along with my costume by now... gasp! Oh well, such is the life of a home haunter.
But back to the costume. The lone prop I've purchased ($13.99 at Halloween Express, I found the exact same thing for $6.99 at Target!) has been given a very light coating of black spray paint. The colors were just too bold and screamed "fake plastic prop!" So I toned it down a little and will be hot-gluing some accents onto it this weekend. I'm hoping to gain some ground on the costume now, because planning for the party is always intense. When you throw a soon-to-be five year old with boundless energy and a crabby, teething one year old into the mix it's amazing that we get anything done at all.
But, this is what it's all about for me. The craziness, the urgency, and the panic are all worth it when the day of the party finally arrives and guests start walking in the door. Besides, my little girl is pretty good inspiration to keep her daddy motivated. The bonus is getting to do it over again (outside this time) two weeks later on Halloween!