our halloween party: continued

I'm on to a new {major!} project that is taking up all of my free time outside of work, so it has taken me a week to post the photos I promised you...a week? I know!  That's an eternity in Blogland.

Our party was surprisingly low-key this year.  More kids than young adults {our age}, which gave our party a different kind of energy, but a good different.  Kids bring their imagination and ability to entertain themselves, which in turn, entertains the adults.  They participated in our games and turned the area underneath our bar into a 'secret fort,' providing shelter from their make-believe enemies.  It was great.

The games we had this year went over well:

blindfolded pin-the-widow-on-her-web
kids' fort

I made the spider web out of green duct tape, and bought a couple packs of Martha Stewart's paper spiders with sticky dots.  There was a little table set up by the web where the kids could write their names with silver sharpies on the black spiders, then I would blindfold them {with a quick DIY blindfold made from Gabriel's pants legs leftover from a recent cut-off-shorts-craze he was on}, spin them around once, and well, you know how to play.  At the end of the night, I gave out three prizes to the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners who got closest to the center of the web.  Since we had a garden theme for the party, two winners received a cute gardening apron and a set of gardening gloves, tied together with Halloween ribbon, and the third winner received a small gardening shovel and two pots of vegetable garden kits, also adorned with Halloween ribbon.  Since all the winners of this game were girls, it worked out well.

The pictures I took of the other games unfortunately didn't come out.  We had a large mason jar with live earthworms that guests had to guess how many were in there.  Gabe used a large jar to mislead people, and it worked.  Looking on the sheet, since the worms only covered the bottom two or three inches of the jar, people were guessing around ten worms.  Only one kid {again, imagination!} guessed the correct number, which was sixty!  Remember Dino?  Yep, he guessed it, so he won a pack of all-black playing cards and a pack of golf balls.  He was ecstatic.  Not exactly garden-related gifts, but they were cheap and I was impulsive on my last trip to Michael's craft store...

There was also a kids' table set up with like twelve mason jars in varying sizes, filled halfway with warm water for the kids to drop little capsules in to grow spooky Halloween sponges.  This was the first place they all ran to when they got to the party.  There was also a coloring book and planting pot of crayons in case any of the younger kids wanted to color, but I think there was too much excitement for a dedicated task like coloring.  Some of the teenagers were glued to the couches, too cool to join the little kids' adventures, so I threw them a tube of glow sticks  and told them to crack/assemble/scatter them around the house.  This actually worked!  They were actually fighting over them.  Funny kids.

We also had the electronic dart board set up and of course, the costume contest voting station.  The three categories this year were as follows:  Sexiest, Most Bizarre, and Most Creative.  I included these categories on the invitations I sent out early in the month, to help guests decide on their costumes if they were trying to win the contest.  Some folks need competitive inspiration, you know.  I just look for any excuse to dress up, personally, and could care less if I receive any recognition.  But with these categories this year, I was secretly hoping people would put more creative thought into their costumes and perhaps DIY rather than BUY. 

And the winners were...
 Most Bizarre:  my pop.  an insane asylum patient all dressed up for the party

 Most Creative:  Dean.  a Pan's Labyrinth faun

Sexiest:  Me. a plastic pink flamingo lawn ornament. However,
I didn't want to recieve a prize, so I awarded the second place {secretly!}
winner:  new sister-in-law Sarah.  a 'sexy bitch'

My favorite costumes are the ones that involve face and body paint.  We saw a wood-nymph, Tony Stark/Ironman, retired leatherhead, retired cheerleader, and a kitty.  

The food was a hit.  Everything I made and bought was given a garden name, and I even used real garden tags to label the food.
We had:
  • pruners puffs  -  green olives rolled in puff pastry and baked; they looked like eye balls in puffy sockets, and were actually delicious.
  • compost cookies  -  homemade chocolate chip cookies with pretzels and tortilla chips shoved in the tops {inspired by these}
  • potting mix  -  chocolate pudding cups topped with crushed Oreo cookie crumbles and sour gummi worms
  • harvested hummus  -  just that, hummus
  • pumpkin seeds  -  again, just roasted pumpkin seeds that Gabe made using the guts from our friends' pumpkin carving party
  • overgrown vines  -  red vines
  • bones of the garden  -  my new obsession; Snyder's hot buffalo wing flavored pretzel pieces {seriously, try them.}
  • cultivated chili  -  homemade veg chili
  • compost tea  -  Kool-aid, ginger ale, + water; mixing grape and orange flavor packets together makes a brown/black colored drink
And others brought red velvet cupcakes, chips/bread, spinach + artichoke dip, and wine.  We had plenty of grub and plenty of libations.  There was vodka that the adults could add to the compost tea {although the vodka remained unopened, surprisingly}, lots of wine, sparkling water, and lots of beer.  We still have beer leftover, which is an entirely new experience for us after a party.  {P.S. We are not responsible for that bottle of Sutter Home white zin you see in that first pic. Just gonna throw that out there...}

Here are a few randoms from the night:
As you can see, our furry children also wore garden-themed costumes.  Bowie was our evidence-hider, and Ziggy was a pinwheel, which I made for her in about two seconds out of post-it notes and a thumbtack at my desk.

All of our costumes were pretty simple to make this year.  The only time-consuming piece was my flamingo wings.  I converted a set of fairy wings using 'pink flamingo' duct tape for the feathers and lemongrass for the feathers' spines {?}.  The third photo in my last post shows the green duct tape grass blades I made to wear around my ankles, suggesting I was stuck in the grass.  I bought the pink bodysuit from American Apparel, since I didn't have any luck finding one at thrift stores, and the tights I picked up at Target, and look forward to wearing them again this winter cuz they're cozy sweatery tights.

I attached an elastic band to a wig that matched Gabe's hair perfectly for his garden gnome beard {a friend + I picked it up at a yard sale years ago, joking that one of us would dress up as Gabe for Halloween one year}, and removed the white fur from a Santa's hat we picked up at a thrift store and made his gnome hat with a little added support from a thick-paper junk mail flyer.  The turtleneck and pants were also thrift store finds, and he already had the belt and boots on hand.

Regarding the first and fourth photos from my last post, I made little party favors for the guests to grab on their way out using  toilet/paper towel rolls, spray paint, a silver sharpie marker, and candy!

They looked like little bats with pointed ears. 
We handed out the leftovers to trick-or-treaters.

Gabe's decorations inside and outside of our house were, as always, the talk of the party and the town.  Literally.  On Halloween night when we sat outside and handed out candy, we heard several parents who were taking their kids around tell one another that they drive by our house everyday and slow down to look at all the decorations.  We go all out for this {and only this} holiday. 

Gabe made the Martha-inspired spider sacks out of nylons, batting, expando-foam, and fake spiders.  He also made the raven perches using chain, spray paint, paper rolls, and some leftover paper ravens from last year's party.  And, he made that silhouette of the girl {me!} holding a pair of garden shears out of foam board and spray paint.  On Halloween night, he set up a strobe light that flashed behind the silhouette, making it look like it was moving, which scared the hell out of both kids and teenagers that walked by our house.  Everything else we decorated with inside and out was junk we had on hand.  We hardly spent any money and had an excellent response.  That's our kinda party!

We probably would find our true calling in a town like Salem, Massachusetts.  Who knows?  Maybe we will someday...

...Now, back to my major project.  Have a splendid weekend!

1 comment:

¡Fräulein! said...

how FUN!
i love you pin the spider on the spiderweb game as well as your costume. so cute!
well done and inspirational.

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