Happy November!

I forgot yet again to create a Wanderlust Wednesday post last week, and missed Monday as well…but here we are on November 1st, so that’s as good a time as any to catch y’all back up on life, right?

Hopefully everyone had a spectacular Halloween…we spent it binge watching Lie to Me and handing out laaaarge handfuls of candy to the 20 or so kids that stopped by. Woo! Anyway, on with my 5 happy things.

  1. It’s November, which means Thanksgiving! This year I’ve decided to spend the entire month writing down things I’m thankful for; and blogger Emily Ley made it super easy with this cute printable! I can’t imagine it’ll be too difficult, though I might be thinking differently by the end of the month. I’ll post updates occasionally 🙂 You should try it too!
  2. Despite the majority of people not knowing who we were dressed up as, I think that Joe and I kicked some major costume butt this year. If you haven’t seen The Royal Tenenbaums, I highly recommend it! It’s been one of my favorites since I watched it in film class my Senior year of high school. Barb also dressed up  multiple times over the weekend, both as a taco and a peacock.
  3. It is 77 degrees right now, and while I feel sad for the polar bears and other animals who have melting homes, I’m going to embrace the warm weather as long as possible! (Especially since everything I’ve read says we’re in for a nasty winter. I really dislike being cold.)
  4. The vodka company I freelance for officially is in stores (in Michigan) as of Oct 31! It’s been a long time coming, and I have no idea which stores it can actually be found in, but I’m excited nonetheless. I had fun with Boomerang for the two Halloween social media posts, heh.
  5. Since I started with a link…kind of, I’m going to finish with one more tidbit of Claire-goodness. We finally booked somewhere to stay during our 14 hour layover in Frankfurt! We found an Airbnb 1 train stop away from the airport. An apartment in a neighborhood is much more exciting (and cheaper!) than the airport hotel. The owners also speak like 8 languages, which is crazy impressive.

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Halloween Recap!

To say we had a successful Halloween would be an understatement: we handed out all of our Halloween candy (hooray for the rain not keeping kids away!), I successfully gave myself Miley buns (and figured out that I’ve been making buns all wrong. The things you learn when you have long hair…) then bar-hopped in Kzoo with our large group of Monty Python characters, winning a costume contest while we were out and about! The prize was a Burton snowboard, which is a liiiittle difficult for 12+ of us to share, but it’s the thought that counts, right?!

Other than throwing Halloween parties with a friend in high school (which, don’t get me wrong, they were fantastic) – I haven’t really done anything exciting for Halloween as an adult, so going out with a group and being a little bit ridiculous was fantastic! 

One of my mottos? Never pass up the opportunity to use a photobooth.
One of my mottos? Never pass up the opportunity to use a photobooth.

Today was spent packing up Halloween decorations in a snazzy new purple box…hooray for post-Halloween sales!

And yes, I did listen to Christmas music for a good portion of the day today. 53 days and counting!

Hope everyone else had awesome Halloweekends!

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Let’s be real, Netflix has some pretty awful movies

Freelancing at home every day allows for a lot of TV time (I work better with background noise, even if it gets a little distracting on occasion) since 1) our studio space upstairs isn’t quite set up yet, and 2) the heat doesn’t really seem to work up there. I emailed our landlady today. Anyway, thanks to our lovely Apple TV (seriously, get one) October has been full of America’s Next Top Model (I just finished season 6) and (mostly) terribly bad “horror” movies.

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Hey there, house! It looks much less gloomy outside in this picture than it really is.

It’s almost Halloween, so if you’re also looking for some terribly bad “horror” movies to watch (or partially watch,) here is the list of what I’ve been watching, along with some brief ‘reviews’ (if you can call them that, hah.) Continue reading “Let’s be real, Netflix has some pretty awful movies”

pumpkins, etc.

As hectic as it can be, Joe and I really enjoy hosting gatherings – and going all out with them – because why not?

Such was the case with our pumpkin carving get-together last night. I made homemade guac, apple brickle dip, and a mummy version of pigs in a blanket, and we had a pumpkin keg with Oktoberfest beer inside 🙂 Oh, and halloween candy, of course.

Easy recipe #1: 4 avocados, juice from 1 small lime, salt, and garlic (to taste.) Mash!
Easy recipe #2: 8oz (softened) cream cheese, 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1/4 cup white sugar. Mix with beaters! Fold in 1 bag of Heath brickle bits.
Easy recipe #3: Eckrich breakfast sausages, croissant dough. Cut croissant dough into small strips, wrap around weenies. Cook according to dough directions.
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My dad gave me a watermelon keg spout (?) for my birthday – it also is perfect for pumpkins!
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I’d be lost without my Cricut.

I also (finally) replaced the happy birthday banner from a few weeks ago with one that says happy halloween!

I’m very glad we planned ahead in regard to keeping everything as mess-free as possible. Lots of newspaper and two cheap plastic tablecloths (one on a folding table, one on the ground) made the clean-up of 8 pumpkins worth of guts much easier, and super quick!

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Not everyone was 100% done with their pumpkins when we took the picture – but I’d definitely say the night was a success! This week is going to be busy – we accidentally sent my bunny tail to my parents house, so we need to find one of those, trivia on Thursday, movie night on Friday, and Halloween fun on Saturday…hooray for getting out and doing things with people 🙂

Now, back to freelance work! I feel like too many of my blog posts end with a similar statement. I’m easily distracted.

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Halloween Costume Prep!

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Last night was spent practicing a bloody face “makeup look” for my halloween costume (and binge watching seasons 4 and 5 of ANTM. I really do have the best hubby.) Hooray for inexpensive Target makeup and brushes! Also, the lady checking us out found it hilarious that we were buying fake blood.

Any guesses as to what I’m going to be? Hint: It’s part of a group costume. No guessing if I’ve already told you! 🙂

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PS. My hair is longer than it’s been in about 6 years. Oy.

No Self Control.

Alright, it’s official. Having Halloween candy in our house 3 weeks in advance + living in a city full of breweries + working from the couch every day is taking a toll on me (aka I’ve gained 5 pounds in the past week. Womp womp.)

But it's just so good!
But it’s just so good! I have no self control.

I know, I know. I could probably stand to gain a few pounds anyway or whatever, but I’d much rather do it in a healthy way, like gaining muscle from barre vs. being as inactive as I’ve been in the past month or so! Unfortunately, like I briefly mentioned in my Monday post – Kalamazoo Barre is kind of lacking in the ab and seat department. I’ve been to 3 classes now, and each class spends about 5 minutes on abs, if that. I’m used to spending almost half the class on abs at PB! (that might be an exaggeration, but that’s certainly what it feels like!) I am enjoying the class as a whole much more than I did the first day though, so I suppose that’s good 🙂

Anyway – the beginnings of marshmallow fluff around my middle makes me sad, so to fix the lack of ab work (and seat) at Kzoo Barre, I just placed an order for a couple of Pure Barre DVDs! Heck, if our basement is set up for barre, I might as well take advantage of it! Hopefully by posting about it on my blog for however many people to see/read, I’ll be able to hold myself accountable and get my butt to our basement somewhat frequently! (Plus I’ll stay a bit more conscious of what we’re making/eating for dinner annnnd keep trying to convince Joe that we need a dog! Heh.)

But for now, back to watching old seasons of ANTM (finishing up Season 3 as I type this) and enjoying all of the yummy restaurants around us – tonight is trivia night!

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oh, PS: I’m going to try to drink more water too. I quite dislike plain water, but it’s gonna happen.

 

DIY – Fall Mickey Wreath!

Since the moment I realized there was a hole in our front door just asking for a wreath to be hung, I’ve been wanting to make a fall wreath…and after a somewhat overwhelming trip to Michael’s and a very messy ordeal in our living room, we now have the absolute best fall wreath hanging on our door!

After looking around online for some inspiration, I saw a picture of a Mickey shaped wreath and immediately knew that was what needed to happen – but there weren’t any directions – sooo I had to wing it, and I gotta say, I think it turned out even better than the picture I initially saw 🙂

I posted a picture of the finished product on Facebook last night and a handful of people asked how to make the wreath, so here it goes!


Craft stores (should) sell the base of each of the 3 wreaths (1 large, 2 smaller), which by the way will not only stick to/catch on each other and pretty much everything else, but create a giant mess of your work space. I struggled to find 3 wreaths that worked well with each other and had the right proportions (so many of the larger wreaths were oval shaped due to shipping, probably) – but after going through pretty much every single option, we found the perfect set!

I also bought 2 “vines” of fall leaves with small pumpkins hanging off of them (could have definitely gotten away with one vine, but I wanted multiple colors of leaves!) a stem of black eyed susans, a stem with fall berries on it, a pack of smaller pumpkins, a small pack of wooden discs that matched well with the size of the pumpkin (mickey ears!), 2 shades of orange paint (one would have been fine, but try to match it to the pumpkin color), and raffia to secure the ears to the head!

Now for the directions!

  1. Paint the wooden discs orange, one side and the edges is really all that’s necessary. Two per pumpkin, if that clarification needs to be made, since they will turn into pumpkin Mickey ears 🙂
  2. While the painted ears are drying, secure the wreath ears to the head using raffia. The more wraps the better – you don’t want Mickey’s ears to droop! Make sure to secure the ears in multiple places, especially closer to the top of the head. Try to get raffia that matches the color of your wreath, so it blends in relatively well.
  3. Once the paint on the ears has dried, use an exacto knife cut into your pumpkins – a cut just deep/long enough to shove your painted orange ears in – make sure your cuts result in the ears being in generally the right place – they should stay in without a problem (all of the pumpkins I ended up with are foam, which definitely helped things.) I made the ears a little more permanent by then hot gluing the seam between the backs of the ears and the pumpkin.
  4. At this point you’ll have all of your parts generally ready. Cut off leaves from your vine(s) as you need them, and just start placing, shoving, and gluing everything onto your base wreath as you see fit! You’ve got all sorts of creative freedom here to make your wreath how you’d like – so go crazy 🙂
  5. Once you’re happy with your wreath (remember, sometimes less is more. I think I went a teensy bit overboard with my leaves, but oh well) use your raffia to make a hook for your wreath and hang your lovely new creation for the world to see! 
  6. I ended up with a lot of extra materials, so I used them to decorate our newly assembled shelf for Fall – but keep that in mind as you make your way through the black hole that is Michael’s/JoAnn’s/Hobby Lobby. You probably don’t need as many materials as you think. Also, Michael’s and Joann’s coupons are interchangeable – so make use of them! Lots of Fall stuff is on sale right now too (the vines were 60% off, for example) so that helps with keeping the cost down.pumpkins

We may not be able to be in Disney World for Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party, but at least now Joe and I have a little bit of Disney Halloween to enjoy up in Michigan until we get down there for Christmas, woohoo!

If you make your own wreath, let me know – I’d love to see them 🙂