Monday, May 29, 2023

Sunday, May 7, 2023

#AtoZChallenge Reflections

Welcome back!  

This is the first time I can legit say that I've earned the winner's trophy!  I had every post done ahead of time and while I kind of slacked on the visiting towards the end, I did do some!  I'll make sure I hit up plenty of reflection posts. 

btw - thank you to the graphics person this year - they're pretty awesome - I'm all about the tree
 (as mine is seen randomly at the bottom of each post)

I realized a couple days into the challenge that my topic really didn't lend itself to a whole lot of comments, so I appreciate those who did leave comments!

My thoughts about the challenge....

Kudos again to the A to Z team for making this happen!  I can only imagine how much work this is.  Keeping track of and visiting 200+ blogs is a lot!  We appreciate you all!

I enjoyed that you guys also had a theme on the A to Z blog. 

My opinion about the list posts in the AtoZ blog is......meh.  I could take them or leave them.  I glanced at them, but I 100% prefer the master list when going to see who I want to visit. I like being about to sort the list how I want and marking the ones I've been to.

I also liked when there was kind of a brief rundown of dates to note in the right sidebar - like when theme reveal sign ups are open, challenge sign ups open & close, etc.  So you can see it right at a glance.   

Anyhooo, off to do some visiting!

and I think I might have an idea for a theme for 2024 already....I'll have to see what I can come up with for daily topics, tho! 

Tuesday, May 2, 2023

Halfway to Halloween!!!

Since I didn't actually make a Halloween post (on this blog anyway) last year, here it is now!

My Halloween blog is Maple Grove Cemetery.  I post there most of the year. 

Yes, Halloween is my favorite time of the year.  I put 1000x more effort into it than I do Christmas.  

2022 really had some good helpers. 

The grandkids actually love my skeletons.

Chuck apparently needed a toy jigsaw.

I picked up some new blowmolds this year!  I haven't had any new ones in many moons. 

These were from actual stores.  My only issue is that the little skeleton is thicker plastic and the C7 (aka nightlight) blub isn't bright enough for it!

This one I got from a vendor at the Haunted Garage Sale put on by the Motor City Haunt Club. 

I volunteered to help vendors carry stuff in - so I got to shop before the doors opened to the public.  I helped carry this guy in - and not long after, carried it right back out...  to my car!

Being October in Michigan, we always get some bad weather.  We always angle the shack carefully so its not being hit square by the west winds tunneling between the houses.  Damned if the wind didn't come out of the east one day!

Besides one skeleton's spine getting snapped at the same time, this was the only destruction we had. I was happy that the glass in the front window didn't break!
The sign
The Mosh Pit
The Spawn wanted to add a pet cemetery off to the side. 
This is a work in progress.

I absolutely love all the critter skeletons that you can get nowadays!
I have chickens & ducks & pigs & rabbits & dogs of all shapes/sizes & cats, a goat, a pony, a horse and a variety of smaller ones that I can't remember right now.  I even have a jackalope!
Things get moved around a lot, up until basically trick or treating starts - there was a pic of the pony (named DucTape - the horse is named ZipTie) earlier inside the fence!  But now he's escaping. 
Skeletons playing 'kick the bucket'
Those 2 on the bench always seem to have margarita glasses or beer bottles...
This is a 7 foot tall skeleton.  
This is one of my favorite headstones.
The Conga Line
There's a story behind this one.  
The Spawn has totalled 2 cars, a green Ford (named Lorenzo) and a blue Pontiac (named Gertrude).

This summer I'll be making a new headstone - for my old car.  It'll be my second headstone with color other than gray since it'll be for a red Saturn.  
The story is in this post.

There will also be a memorial headstone made for Spawn's 3rd car.  Reginald the Cadillac didn't die a violent death like Lorenzo, Gertrude & Ruby did, but he left the driveway with dignity on the bed of a  towtruck. 

Anyhoo.  I've made all my headstones myself.  They're plywood painted with exterior paint, then coated with Drylok, which is concrete sealant with sand in it.  And maybe another coat of paint.  And maybe more Drylok.  And more paint.  They've been around since 2008 so they've been touched up a time or three.  They have conduit hangers on the back - which are like U shaped things screwed into the back so they slide over a piece of rebar pounded into the ground. 

Here's the "official" video, complete with night shots.
The Mosh Pit is a separate thing on the opposite side of the driveway so their lights don't drown out all the LEDs in the cemetery. 
I love the sky here!
I had one hell of a time finding these ducks!
Ducklings were found everywhere, but I needed the bigger guys!
The 2 little jack-o-lanterns are painted since that's easier for the grandkids to do.