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Mistress of Mayhem
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560 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Most years I start my Halloween preparations sometime in February. If not the actual construction, at LEAST the planning and design. But this year has been one of the worst years of my life. A very sudden and unexpected upheaval in my marriage last December has continued to wreak havoc on my life and disrupt just about everything I would normally have been focusing my time and energy on over the course of this year so far.

Because I was fairly certain that things were going in the direction of no longer living in my house by October, I put all thoughts of Halloween out of my mind. Yet, here it is September and it seems I'm still going to be in this house for at least the next two months... Still, I was thinking that maybe I would just fore-go Halloween this year, since I haven't done anything for it at all.

But then today, these two little girls who live in my neighborhood came to my door. They were selling things from a magazine for school, and that was supposed to be their focus, but when I answered the door, the first question out of their mouths was "Are you doing Halloween this year?"

They had these very anxious looks on their faces, and I told them that I /think/ I'm doing it, but I haven't decided yet. They started jumping up and down as if I'd given them a firm yes.

Then one of them, with a look of sheer relief that only a child can have, said, "We heard you were moving out of the house, and we were so worried!"

I said, "I may be moving, yes, I'm not sure yet."

They both started shaking their heads with these pleading expressions that was so touching! They said, "You can't move! We love you!" (These are girls I don't even know!)

Then one of them stood up real tall and squared her little shoulders and she said, "I've been here for the past three years in a row! I love it here! I've gone through all three years! And my uncle was here last year, and you made him pee his pants!" To which, I could only laugh, because really, isn't that why we do what we do? LOL To make other adults pee their pants so the kids laugh at them..? hehehehehehe It was so cute how proud she was of herself for having the guts to go through the house every year. :)

Anyway! So now the pressure is REALLY on! Apparently people are looking forward to my haunted house, and I soooo hate the thought of disappointing them! lol I love that they love my Halloween celebrations, and I love that they get so excited about it... Makes me feel like I'm genuinely a part of their lives, ya know? They are going to grow up and tell their kids about the crazy American lady on their street when they were kids who loved Halloween so much she haunted her whole house and let everybody go through it...

I have so little time left! I need a theme quick! And maybe some really quick prop ideas that can be scary but made fast or in mass quantities.

Anybody got any ideas? I'd love to hear 'em! :)

Happy Haunting season my friends! :)


 

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Far Away Eyes
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3,354 Posts
So sorry to hear of the huge unexpected changes in your life. Your story about the little girls is so heartwarming though. I guess what we do does make a bigger impact than we sometimes think.

What size of an area do you decorate? Is it indoors or outside? I am not sure what to suggest without knowing more. Do you have some props that you can work with already?
 

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Mistress of Mayhem
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560 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Thank you for the warm thoughts! Sometimes unexpected changes are good for us in the end, ya know? Get us out of a rut we've been in and didn't even realize. At least, that's the way I'm looking at it! :)

Yeah, those girls today really made me feel good about all the work I've done in the past years. :)

My house is not huge, but it's a decent size. I usually decorate inside and out, and we haunt the house, opening it to the neighborhood so they can go through and we can scare them every year. If it would help to get some ideas of the space, you can see it on my website linked in my signature. I've still got most of the props I've made over the years. Though, unfortunately, the huge Grim Reaper I made to hang from my front window last year was eaten by mice in the garage over the last winter... Guess that's what I get for making it out of paper mache, huh? lol Oh well!

I have several skeletons, and tons of skulls... Spiderwebs are pretty easy to get even here.. Ummmm... well, most of the stuff you'll see in the pics of my haunts I still have. I would like to figure out something big, yet relatively easy to make for the big window... I've had the lady in my profile pic hanging out the windows for the past two years in a row, so I'd rather not use her again.

We've been tossing around the idea of an infestation type theme, over grown jungly type place with lots of bats, bugs, spiders, etc... but that's not set in stone... And if we did that, I'd still need an idea of what sort of place was being infested so I could set the scene properly (he doesn't like to think things through to that extent, hehe).

Thanks in advance for any help you guys can give me!! I'm desperate! :)
 

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Registered
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330 Posts
I would say instead of trying to make new things try to think of ways to set up what you have differently. That will be faster and ultimately less stress, which it sounds like you have had enough stress this year already. Maybe pick a couple of items and give them make overs. It doesn't take much to make changes seem big. Maybe try different lighting schemes if you don't already do something with lights. That can make a big impact with little effort.

Overall I think just doing it will be enough for the kids since that is what they are looking forward to it. I would throw just enough change in there to make it fresh but keep the effort low on your part.

Besides that sorry to hear about your troubles and i hope everything works out for the best.
 

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Here to burgle your turts
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2,305 Posts
We've been tossing around the idea of an infestation type theme, over grown jungly type place with lots of bats, bugs, spiders, etc... but that's not set in stone... And if we did that, I'd still need an idea of what sort of place was being infested so I could set the scene properly (he doesn't like to think things through to that extent, hehe).

talkingcatblues did a yard haunt with a big spider infestation and littered the yard with warning signs about spraying for insects, and crushed cans of bug spray and dead exterminator skeletons. And spider- damaged property. I thought that was pretty awesome . Lots of fun little details! :)

Maybe you could do something like a buggy version of Jurassic Park?

(Also in total agreement with Scott's suggestions which probably negates the stuff above).


BTW, good to see you back! :)
 
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