Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Welcome to the "Ber" months!

Happy September!  How have you all been?

Pretty excited for the Halloween season to start ramping up a bit!  I know a lot of people (on Facebook) who have already started decorating!  I'll be missing out on 2 whole weekends this month, so I think I'll start digging stuff out of the shed & garage on Friday the 13th.  Seems like a good day!   I've been thinking about making a video, maybe we can catch what furry asshole is living / has a burrow behind my headstones!

The last weekend in August, we went on vacation.  If you follow me on Instagram, you'd know that already!  I was posting as we went over there.   

The Spouse and I (and Chuck) drove around New England, since neither of us had been in that part of the US before.   It was a great trip!
Gassing up the car.
Cleaning windows.

Welcome to Canada!
Crossing the Rainbow Bridge between Port Huron, MI and Sarnia, Ontario.
Woooo - crossing the border into New York
I have some coworkers who told me not to bother stopping here, but we did anyway - twice!
I would give it a star above Taco Bell.

Our first night we stayed in Rutland, VT.  And then stopped to check out the Wilson Castle. 
They rent it out for weddings and such and they do ghost tours at night.  We just walked around the outside.  Stunning architecture!  And I'm glad they're trying to restore it.

1st pumpkin spice iced coffee of the season!
We found the Maple Grove Farms of Vermont purely by accident & stopped to check out the gift shop.  And bought some maple vinaigrette salad dressing & maple pepper. 

We stopped in Barre, Vermont to visit Hope Cemetery.  So beautiful!  I'll have a post about it soon. 

Our next stop was in New Hampshire at Mt. Washington.  OMG.  Gorgeous!
I had no idea New Hampshire was so pretty anyway, but 6288 feet up on top of a mountain - breathtaking!   
Chuck looks very photogenic here!
Before we left New Hampshire, we had to stop here!  It was about 4 miles from our hotel in North Conway and we'd passed in on the way in.  Of course there will be a post about it soon (the Countdown to Halloween is approaching rapidly!)
Day 3 found us in Two Lights State Park in Maine. 
We basically sat & enjoyed the ocean for a half hour, then headed back out on the road to Boston.
But first a stop at.... Sleepy Hollow Cemetery!  This isn't THE Sleepy Hollow, since that's in New York, but this one in Concord, Massachusetts is equally cool.  It has "Author's Ridge" with the likes of Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Louisa May Alcott,  Henry David Thoreau, William Channing, and David Lothrop.  They were all really close together, too.

Day 4, we were in Boston.
 
We left Chuck in the room with a note introducing himself to housekeeping.
despicable me lol GIF
Day 4 (8/29 - my birthday!!)  the Spouse had a mandatory conference call with the yahoos from work so we got a late start.  We took the train into Boston...



and explored the Granary Burial Ground and King's Cross Burying Ground.
Look at the detail on some of these stones!!
I love the lounging skeleton here. 
Our next stop was a commuter train to Salem!!
happy so excited GIF
 We just won't talk about my knee deciding it didn't like me running for said commuter train.  Causing mucho pain & gimpiness.
 The Salem Witch Museum was a gimme.  We had to go there.  And the ladies at the ticket counter were so entertained with Chuck! 

The walking ghost tour was pretty neat.  Our guide was really good & fun to hear her tell the stories about actual hauntings.

Note to self.  Give yourself more than a couple hours to see Salem.  Especially if you're limping!
I wish I'd looked closer at what to see & do there.  Since there was a lot of stuff we saw during the ghost walk that would have been better to see in daylight.  I guess that just means we have to go back someday!  Just not in October.  Too people-y!  I've heard October in Salem be compared to Mardi Gras in New Orleans.

This is how I carried Chuck around.  He fit in that backpack perfectly! 

Day 5, we left Boston for Connecticut.  We thought about going to Groton to tour a submarine, but there's no way I could have handled a tiny diesel sub with my knee how it was.   So we just went to Newington to the headquarters of the ARRL!
Spouse and I are both amateur radio operators, so we couldn't *not* stop!
And since I happen to have the best spouse in the world who willingly plans cemetery visits into our vacations - this one was for him.  He had a good time playing radio until they made him stop - LOL!

We had dinner at Chi-Fil-A since it's still a relatively rare thing here in Michigan.  We stayed in night in Connecticut, then came home on day 6.
Both border crossings were entertaining.  The Canadian agent asked Spouse to roll down the window, at which we both just stared at him, since the window was down!  He meant the back window! 
When we got to New York,  we already had the back window rolled down and the agent just looked for a second, nodded in approval and commented about "safety for everyone"!
despicable me 3 lol GIF

So as I mentioned before - Countdown to Halloween signups are happening!  If you want to join in on the fun, drop an email to the Cryptkeeper!

I'm hoping to get some posts pre-written before then!

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Happy Middle-of-August!

Also known as 2 weeks til my birthday!  

It's been a minute since I've been on ye ol' blog, what have we been up to?
I finished my Creek E. Bonez headstone!  It's pretty big, so I think I'll just lean it against the house, instead of figuring out a way to keep it upright out in the yard.
 I was going to write a post detailing how I made it, but I think anyone could figure it out.
Pose & glue skeleton with liquid nails to plywood board.  I had to add a foot or so piece to this 4 foot board since the skeleton was taller than I remembered. Slap a coat of exterior paint over the whole thing to seal it.  I got a nice poo brown from the oops paint shelf at Lowe's.  Coat #1 of DryLok.  Coat #2 of DryLok I dabbed on with a paint brush to fill in the brushstrokes.  2 coats of the perfect shade of exterior matte gray, also from the oops paint shelf.   Drybrush black over the bones.  Add a little acid green and call it done!
This is my memorial for my Jack-a-poo that crossed the Rainbow Bridge back in February.  It's going to be weird setting up the cemetery this year without him.  He'd been out there with me "helping" every year since I started Maple Grove in 2008.  
I'll put this toward the back of the cemetery & backlight it so there's hopefully a halo effect around it.
Here is my puppy boy last year, watching me work on some project.  
He went downhill (heart disease, etc) soon after Halloween.  

So last weekend we went to the Cheeseburger Festival in Caseville with Spouse, my Mom & Sister #1.  And Chuck, of course!  
Mmmmm cheeseburgers!  I had the "Cristo" which was made with french toast as the bun & topped with Swiss cheese, Canadian bacon & a dusting of powdered sugar and maple syrup to dip into.  (swoon!).  Spouse & sister had the "Porky" burger with pulled pork, cheddar & BBQ sauce.  Mom had a plain boring burger since she (gasp!) doesn't like cheese.  Later Spouse & I shared a burger on greasy buttery garlic bread, topped with Swiss & cheddar & bacon. The huge patty was cooked in a pie pan, so we got a wedge of burger.
 One of the sister's friends has a camper right up along Lake Huron, so we stopped in to visit & go swimming.
 
So I hadn't planned on really buying much this season, but ya know...things happen.  Of course I said that before I saw any of the offerings out in stores. 
Yes - I scored one of these puppies from Michaels!  They'd barely had anything else on the shelves when I saw they had them in stock at a nearby store. 
I got 2 sets of these skeleton hands & the "iguana" below from Oriental Trading.  
Speaking of (please excuse how my brain works!) I'd ordered some M&Ms from O.T. and they arrived looking like someone sat on them for a while in a warm room, so I got a refund and these instead.   The pink & blue M&Ms had been for a gender reveal party because I'm gonna be a Grandma!  
The grandson will be making his arrival around Christmastime. 
During the ultrasound, he looked right at us & it lit up the lens of his eye - creeeeepy! 

So I also stopped into Big Lots last night and was happy to find their "haunted" CB radio.  I'd seen a picture that someone posted but didn't see it on their website, so I thought I'd imagined it.  Nope! Since it's the closest I'll get to a ham radio, we'll just have to pretend.  My witch shack may be a ham shack in the cemetery this year!
 I was on the HalloweenForum today and I was reading the thread about Joann Fabrics and someone posted about a pig & chicken skeleton, but then said they weren't on the website anymore.  Maybe 2 or 3 weeks ago they weren't but they were today and both were available nearby!  I was just going to get the pig, but I really like the chicken a lot more than I expected!
So it looks like it'll be less gypsy-flavored in the cemetery this year and more farmyard!
And I love it!