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Thursday, October 28, 2010

On the Third Day Before Halloween….

…our house was swarmed by bats.

The idea of using flying bats as Halloween decor also came from Martha Stewart.  Although, I altered the directions for this project to better fit my time restrictions.  Sometimes Martha takes the long route.

Here is Martha’s batty lamp.  I thought everything about this picture was so cute for Halloween.


You can follow Martha’s directions for her shivering bats by clicking here.  I found her process a little too time consuming.  If you are short on time, you can follow my directions found in this post.

The template I used for my little bats was the result of a Google image search for a black bat.  (My batty lamps are below.)  I chose the bat found in the template below because it had a simple shape that was easy to cut out.  I just right clicked the picture, saved it, and printed as many as I needed to fill all sides of each shade. (Pardon the poor photography on my part.  I snapped these on my way out the door with Judd’s iphone.  There was no time for staging or editing.  You still kind of get the idea right?)

Click here for Martha’s template.

Click here for the bat template I used.


The materials you will need to make the bats my way are found below:

  • Computer
  • Printer
  • Scissors
  • Tape
  • Plain white printer paper

Martha’s instructions suggest you use her template, trace the bats on to black paper, cut them out, and hang them from wire inside the shade. 

My directions are simple.  Use the template for the easy to cut out bat shape I provided above or search for an image you like better.   Make sure the bat image you choose is already filled in with black.  That way, you can use your regular white printer paper and you can save yourself a step of having to trace the template onto black paper.   Who has time for that?  Not me.  :)


Once you have printed the number of bats that you need, stack several sheets of bat printed paper up to cut out multiple bats at one time. 

When all the bats have been cut out, use one small piece of clear tape for each bat.  Put the tape at the top of each bats’ head with the sticky side of the tape on the white side of your paper.  Place the tape where half of the piece is on the bat and the other half is sticking up above the bat’s head.  Make sure your lamp is off and that the bulb is cool so that you do not burn yourself.  Adhere each bat inside your shade using the part of the tape that is sticking up above the head making sure that the black side of the bats are facing outward.

Finally, turn on your lamp and see the spooky shade you have created. 

I also put bats in our dining room chandelier.  I think they look spooktacular!


Wednesday, October 27, 2010

On the Fourth Day Before Halloween…

…our house was infested with mice.  Eeek!

If you are having a Halloween party this weekend or if you just want the house to be decorated for spooky fun try the ideas below.

I first got the idea to decorate with mice silhouettes from Martha Stewart.   As much as I love Martha, I often find that there is an easier way to create some of her projects than by following her directions.  Life is busy.  Who has time to follow all of the rules?  :)

Here was Martha’s mice infested bookshelf. 

Mouse Silhouettes  

You can find her directions by clicking here.  Or, if you are like me and have very little spare time, you can use my directions found in this post. 

The materials you will need to make the mice silhouettes my way are listed below:

  • Scissors
  • Computer
  • Printer
  • Note cards
  • Glue stick
  • Plain white printer paper

Martha suggested printing her mice template.  Next, her directions instruct you to trace the mice onto black construction paper and proceed to cut out each one.  Again, I thought that would just take way too long.  Well, that and I had already used my black construction paper for another project that I will show you in the coming days before Halloween.

Here is what I did.  (My bookshelf with mice is below).  On Martha’s template the mice are already filled in with black.  I just used my regular ole white printing paper and let the printer make black mice for me rather than tracing the template onto colored paper.  Voila.  One click to tell your machine to print and you have black mice.  I printed several pages of her template so that I had plenty of mice.  (Pardon the grainy photos.  They were all taken at night using Judd’s iphone.)

Click here to find the mice template.


I proceeded to put several pages of the templates together at a time when cutting out the mice.  You know, cut out one mouse and have four because you’ve stacked multiple sheets when cutting.  To fully maximize the small amount of free time I have, I brought my printed templates with me and cut most of the mice out on my lunch break at work.  There is never a dull moment in my office.  Ha.


To make the mice stand up, I cut a few note cards into thin strips.  I placed one strip on each mouse and made sure it didn’t show from the front.  I then used a glue stick to secure the strips onto the back of the mice.  This gave them enough support to stand up.


Next, I turned most of the books on our shelf backwards so the pages would provide a better contrast with the mice.  This helped the silhouettes to show up better.  (Note: On a normal basis, I am vehemently opposed to turning books backwards on your shelf or covering spines with velum, cloth, etc.  I’ve noticed that a lot of designers are doing that lately to keep their rooms looking monochromatic.  I think it is absurd.  Books are for reading, sharing, and discussing.  They provide a deeper understanding of the world around us.  They are for spreading knowledge.  How will the designers and the owners of the homes they design be able to utilize their books if they don’t know which ones are which? OK.  I’m off my soapbox).  I figured for 31 days in October we could spare turning ours around; however, they will not stay like this.  We like our books.  We read and enjoy them all year long.


Next, I placed the little critters on our bookshelf.  Most of them are freestanding.  I did, however, put a rolled  piece of tape on the backs and tails of a few of them for support.


To up the spooky factor, I filled a basket with some glittered pumpkins and placed it on the shelf.


Also, I found some great websites that allowed me to print some creepy art to replace our usual photos on the shelf.  I just opened the frames and put these on top of our usual pictures.  Again, I just printed them on regular white printer paper.  I didn’t have any photo paper.  In my opinion, the regular paper added a flat look which increased the level of scary.

Click here to find the website with the bat art.


Click here to find the website with the skull.


Overall, the project was easy and a lot of fun to create.  Also, I don’t think this will take long to put back to normal when Halloween is over.    You still have time to make this for the weekend.  If you do, leave a comment and share your post about it.  It would be fun to see how you’ve used the mice.


Monday, October 25, 2010

Lights. Cameron. Action.

War Cam Eagle

Check out the link below to see Auburn University’s Heisman campaign for Auburn’s quarterback, Cam Newton.  Judd and I have had the pleasure of watching him perform at every home game this year.  We are amazed with his talent every week.  This kid is the real deal.  See for yourself.


Tuesday, October 12, 2010

A Trip Down Halloween Lane

There are so many blog posts that I’ve been meaning to write.  I’ve built up quite a list of topics.  Judd even has one he has been thinking about posting.  I’ve been so consumed with life in general that I have not had a chance to even start a single post.  I really enjoy blogging.  I’ve missed you folks.

Our house is all decorated for Halloween.  I can’t wait to show you all what I have done.  That will have to wait too.  I haven’t taken any pictures of it yet.

Anyways, since I’ve been a total lurker of all of your great blogs lately, yet haven’t managed to post on mine in the past decade (well…two weeks but it feels like a decade in blogosphere time) here is a quick overview of a few of our Halloweens past.  These are all photos I just happen to already have scanned and saved on my computer.  I promise to do a post with actual substance sometime soon.

Judd’s always loved Halloween too.  Here he is with his brother, Colby (left). 


This is me on our front porch at my old house in Huntsville, AL with my oldest friend, Rachel.  She was in my big brother Bryan’s grade.  We were next door neighbors.  She, her sister (hi Carolyn),  Bryan, and I were pretty much inseparable.  We spent lots of afternoons doing homework together.  We also spent lots of time together decorating for Halloween, trick-or-treating, and even recording a “spooky sounds” tape in their storm shelter.  Good times.


Fast forward several years to 2002.  This is my sorority sister, Jaclyn, and me at a fraternity party in Auburn.  That was also a good time.  Ha.

Halloween 2002 at Chi Phi House in AU

Continue fast forwarding a few more years to 2004 when Judd and I were engaged.  We hosted a pumpkin carving party at his house (which is now the house we use to tailgate in at Auburn.) 


This little trip down Halloween lane was fun for me.  I hope you enjoyed it and I hope that you make happy memories with your friends and family this Halloween.