happy halloween

Let's get to it then, shall we? Lots to post on this spooky day... first off, my Zombie Jar swap parcel arrived from Angela - just in time for the big day! Can you imagine this dragonfly tissue paper, how divine is that? And the penmanship on the card, I would die to have penmanship like that!

Inside the box was waiting the lovely Nessa Rose as Loopy and I have named her. We're fans of Wicked the Musical and it seemed fitting! She is so sweet, thank you Angela! She traveled much more safely than Ghoul Girl and she is so sweet and tiny in her jar.

She fits in well at the dollhouse... it's all decked out for tricks and treats tonight... and look! There's a package on the front step from Amy at Inspire Company! Who let Duke out? I'm very busy trying to get ready for this party tonight... someone let him in for me.

Veto needs to do some raking around the dollhouse too. That tree is dropping leaves like crazy around the driveway.

The pumpkins are ready to harvest! Mmmmmm tiny dollhouse pumpkin pie. Buddy Budderson's favourite dessert, in miniature.

Yesterday I had a delightful coffee break at Starbucks with Pam and her sweet baby Kennedy. We bonded over salted caramel hot chocolates and jewelry. We swapped pieces. Here is the cozy little necklace I made for her, dazzled among the yarn sit Swarovski crystals:

Pam is an amazing jewelry maker... I'm just a little out of my league... look at the bracelet she made for me, all vintage looking, and the perfect colours for the season. I'm planning on wearing it when we go out in Chicago.

She made a necklace for Loopy too! Loopy was thrilled, she lurrves it. She's hatched a plan to wear it on Monday with the new sweater The Fan brought back from Europe. Check it out being modeled by Smudge the Halloween glittery cat:

There are just some images I love for Halloween... don't know why... cute Frankensteins really get me in the spirit. Eyeballs too. Isn't that strange? I saw these candy dishes and was a goner.

At Loopy's school, the kids don't wear costumes for Halloween, it's called "orange and black day"... don't even get me started on that. Here's Loopy with the secretary Deb on "orange and black day":

Yesterday's give was about Halloween, too. While we watched The Office and Kath and Kim, Loopy and I stuffed plastic gloves with popcorn for her to take to school and hand out today to the preschool kiddies she volunteers with:

How utterly cute these turned out. They're also very inexpensive, I buy the gloves at the dollar store (of course) and the spider rings, too. Popcorn is cheap, cheap, cheap.

I did up a wacky hairdo for Loopy for "orange and black" day... do you see how I sneaked that in? An extra Wacky Hair Day, just because.

The preschoolers are allowed to dress up! Why not the big kids? Everyone over preschool age wears black and orange... if they have it. I think "black and orange day" keeps more kids out of the fun than Halloween costumes. Not everyone owns orange clothes, you know!

Well that's it for me for today... Happy Halloween! I'm off and running to get the rest of the stuff ready for tonight's party and I guarantee a great post about it tomorrow, okay! With costumes.

a toast of thanks

Plus, on this day The Fan and I decided to hang one quick roll of wallpaper on Loopy's bedroom wall... it only took an hour to add some teenybopper pizazz to her room:

Do you agree that nothing says "teenager" like cheetah print mixed with pink walls?

And of course all the while I am hanging wallpaper and obsessing over the shape of my face I am planning on:

... about just wallpaper and the state of my cheeks. That seemed to be foremost on my mind today. Until:

Well now, this is a mystery. Upon opening the front door I found a gift bag containing the lovely Martha Stewart Cooking School book. Alas, there was nary a card nor an inscription.

Perhaps it was left by mistake, said The Fan. Someone borrowed it from your neighbour and returned it to the wrong house.

Oh, no. But then I couldn't keep it.

Who could have done this? Have I been the recipient of a random act of kindness? Surely, this is a generous, lovely and random act. It deserves a proper thank you.

Don't you agree, Dear Reader?

Well as much as he looks like Andy Samburg, I just wanted to include this picture in my post. There is no way it was Buddy Budderson. He just really sometimes looks like Andy Samburg.

And so, to you, whoever you are, dear friend and random kindness distributor, thank you from the bottom of my heart and the tip of my slightly enlarged nose.

a forest of apples

Once upon a time two girls named Pepper and Saucy got together to build a forest out of apples, chocolate and candy. It turned out well.

Some of the apples were made with delicious s'mores candy corn that was shipped this way by The Inmate. Double-dipped in white and milk chocolate...

Pepper fancied the idea of smartie apples but Sarge fancied the idea of smarties. There were still lots of candies to go round the tiny forest the girls were creating.

The forest went up in a short afternoon. The kitchen air was sweet with the smell of sugar and conversation. No Macy, we didn't need to dip apples in chocolate. We needed a little visit. The apples-in-the-chocolate was just an excuse. When you're our age, you'll understand. Things look better over melted chocolate, with a friend.

Saucy made her annual special... earwax on swab. Don't wig out, man. Its just mini marshmallows poked onto a lollipop stick and dipped in butterscotch. Try some.

Even rice krispie treats get in on the action around here at Halloween! Poked, dipped, sprinkled, topped with The Inmate's gummy worms and tied with a bow!

Eventually the project ran out of chocolate and the girls used the last of it to dip pretzel rods. Legend has it that Saucy licked the bowl clean when the reforestation of the kitchen was complete.

the pumpkin patch

Today Loopy and her friend made up these pumpkin goodie parcels for their Halloween party on Friday night - we've invited the entire class! We extended the invitiation to everyone, knowing that the full compliment of 32 eighth graders probably... hopefully... won't be able to make it. We didn't want to leave anyone out. In the meantime, we are planning for about 20 partiers for trick-or-treating and snacks afterwards. These little tissue pumpkins are filled with Tootsie Rolls, gummy fangs, spider confetti, plastic rings and skull lollipops! The lollies are inverted in the centre of the pumpkin tissue and became the stem when the paper was wrapped up with florist's tape.

Have you ever made potato chip cookies? Try them if you like the combination of salty and sweet. I think you could also make these without the nuts.

1/2 cup softened butter
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup crushed plain potato chips
1/2 cup chopped pecans

Cream butter and both sugars together well. Beat in egg and vanilla.

Add remaining ingredients. I also added a couple of handfuls of chocolate chips - excellent with the salty potato chips! Mix well and roll into one inch balls. Bake on ungreased cookie sheet at 350 degrees for 12 minutes. Makes 3 dozen.

flip girl!

Today was an exciting one for our Loopy - she got to be a flip girl! Triple Flip is an amazing active wear company geared towards young girls. Loopy's back to school clothes, her bookbag and binder all came from Triple Flip!

Twice a year the store hosts an event where customers are invited to be flip girls for the new advertising campaign. Genius! The girls who get chosen are over the moon with excitement - and treated like little queens for the day! After wardrobe fitting, it was off to hair and makeup:

The makeup artist was the sweetest. All of the store employees were so encouraging of the girls and so friendly! You should have seen all the cuteness in that store today, it was unbearable. What a fun environment it was.

Loopy's turn! She had a good ten minutes in front of the camera. She is wearing the coolest pants from Designs by Naomi. The top is by Triple Flip (did I mention that they are based out of Calgary?)... we love to shop Canadian stores.

The photographer deserves a special shout out! Check out Tracy D. Photography... she was so amazing, the way she worked with those little gals. She offered posing tips and ideas and the atmosphere was so completely relaxed and fun! Dear Reader, you know that I used to teach me some photography back in the day... I have standards and this girl surpassed them.

The flip girls were asked to bring along props if they wished... Loopy dug out her pink dance poms. When it was too late she realized she'd left her pink glitter guitar at school on Friday, she'd planned to take that along... how cool that would have been, especially since those pants she wore also come in a guitar print!

Loopy workin' it! She only ever poses for my camera... she was a wee bit nervous at first. Eventually she got into it. We can't wait to see the photos, we ordered a CD.

I just cannot say enough good things about a company that encourages young girls to be active, to be themselves and to be postive and encouraging towards each other. The models all clapped for each other after they took turns. We need more of this! Less bullies. More of this.

This promotion was genius on so many levels. Customers as models! Friends and family coming to watch the action! Shoppers stopping to enjoy the show. There was a DJ mixing on site too. It was like an awesome little party. Of course, the models all wanted to buy what they wore... so as I said, genius!

Thank you to Triple Flip for an amazing little opportunity for Loopy and all those little gals who just beamed with excitement today. Oh, and yes... The Fan and I did some Christmas shopping there too.

They also interviewed each of the girls about their interests and whatnot for the website... I was shocked that Loopy didn't mention The Jonas Brothers as her main interest... maybe that's a good thing!