Friday, October 28, 2016

Luke's First Trick-or-Treat

Today my sister tagged me in this Facebook Memory that popped up on her feed, and I just had to share it with you all! This is my son, Luke, all dressed up for his very first trick-or-treat during Halloween 2010!

This wasn't Luke's first Halloween, however. When I was pregnant with Luke, the doctors gave us the estimated due date of October 31, 2009. I was thrilled at the possibility of having a Halloween baby. As things would turn out, that wasn't even close to what happened. I went into early labor with Luke at 28 weeks. My doctors managed to stop him from being born in August....but after a month-long stay in the hospital, I still ended up having Luke early. He was born on September 21, 2009, around 5 weeks before his projected Halloween birthday.

Due to an infection and some other complications from his premature birth, Luke spent some time in the NICU. When we were finally able to take him home, he was, for the most part, a fairly strong and healthy lil' guy. However, being born at the start of cold and flu season and having a compromised immune system, we were advised to keep in away from people as much as possible. So, when Halloween rolled around, I had to make the decision to NOT take him trick-or-treating. As much as I love Halloween, it was an easy decision to make, lol. Obviously, I wanted to keep my baby healthy, but since he was only a month old, he couldn't eat any of the candy, anyway. I resisted the urge to dress him up, and just put a cute pumpkin outfit on him. Since the start of trick-or-treat was fairly warm, I brought him outside for a few minutes to meet some neighbors he hadn't met yet, and then took him inside.

Therefore, it wouldn't be until Halloween 2010 that he'd finally be old enough to go out. We took him to Toys R Us where I paid way too much for a pirate costume, but it was adorable. We held up several choices of costume for him to pick from and he reached for the pirate. Unfortunately, that year was a little cold, so most of his outfit was covered with a blanket. Still, he got lots of lollipops that year, which he was allowed to have under strict supervision, and mommy got lots of other candy that he wasn't allowed to have, lol. He seemed to really enjoy the trick-or-treat process, and even managed to eke out some mumbled syllables that sounded enough like 'trick-or-treat' to elicit plenty of 'awws!' from people. It was, and always will be, one of my favorite Halloweens. 

Friday, October 21, 2016

Fancy Halloween Cookies

This are some darn fancy Halloween cookies! These would be great to serve at an upscale, yet spooky, dinner party....but who could have the heart to actually EAT them?! They're more art than food! Anyway, this example is from the Cookie Connection website, said to be inspired by the work of Arty McGoo and Sweet Ambs.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Marshall the Marshmallow Boy

Meet Marshall, the little marshmallow boy! In this acrylic painting on wood paneling entitled 'Marshall Meets Jack' (2011), the cute lil' puffy kid encounters a rather creepy jack-o-lantern. This work of art is from 64 Colors. Check out the Flickr page HERE!

Monday, October 17, 2016

Scareview Grave School

Friday, October 14th marked National Haunted House Day, a day dedicated to supporting all those spooky, gruesome, and just plain FUN haunted house attractions out there! Due to prior commitments, we had to hold off the celebration until the next day when we visited Scareview Grave School!

Touted as WV's premier haunted house, Scareview Grave School definitely lives up to its reputation! I've been to a LOT of haunted houses over the years, and I'm always thrilled with what Scareview has to offer. Located in St. Albans, WV in the old Fairfield Grade School, this haunted house attraction is hosted by the West Side Volunteer Fire Department.

The fact that this event is hosted by the fire department is probably one of the reasons I love it so much. It really is a community event with proceeds going to a great cause. The admission price is extremely reasonable as well---it costs $10 per person, or $8 if you bring a donation of a non-perishable food item. Those food items are then donated to local food pantries. And for that price, you really get a great bang for your buck.

Like I said, I've been to many haunted houses, many with a much more expensive admission price, and they don't really measure up to what Scareview has to offer. The 20 minute walk takes you through a labyrinth of spooky scenes, covering two floors of the old schoolhouse. I don't want to give away any of the surprises, but many things that you find at more expensive for-profit haunts, you'll find here at Scareview. For an attraction that is put on by volunteers, every scene and every transition is well thought out, well staged, and well staffed---there are NO shortages of actors ready to pop out at every corner at you, which brings me to another really cool aspect that I love:

The scare actors seem to absolutely love and take pride in their work. The costumes are excellent, they stay in character, and they know how to entertain the crowd as you're waiting to enter the attraction. Back to the community aspect, many of the scare actors are students who are earning their school's community service requirement through work on the haunted house! How cool is that?

Pretty cool, if you ask me, lol. In fact, its all pretty cool. I don't really have any negative things to say about this attraction or how its ran. Everyone we encountered was super nice, there were excellent concessions available for fair prices, the house was fun and entertaining, and it was a great community event close to home. The wait time was a little longer than I'd like, but if you go early in the season or early in the evening, the wait time is usually no more than an hour. Oh, and did I mention that the building may actually be....haunted? But that's for another blog!

Until then, go check it out! It's open every Friday and Saturday through October 29th!

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Halloween Obsession

I think I'm actually becoming MORE obsessed with Halloween as I get older! What about you?

Friday, October 14, 2016

Happy National Haunted House Day!

The second Friday in October is National Haunted House Day! Well...a group of dedicated haunters are at least trying to MAKE it an official holiday. If you're a fan of haunted house attractions, please consider supporting this initiative. The National Haunted House Day website has a list of ways you can show your support. I'll be showing MY support this Halloween season by patronizing some of the tri-state's best haunted house attractions---look for my reviews throughout the season, and stop over at Theresa's Haunted History of the Tri-State's Facebook page to let me know what YOUR favorite haunted house attraction is!

Thursday, October 13, 2016

How Will You Die This Halloween?

Dude, this isn't even funny. According to this chart, I will die by being run over by a lawn mower by my own mom. If I would ever die by a lawn mower related accident, there's a 99% chance that it will be at the hands of my own mother. Recently, her riding lawn mower has been experiencing some steering problems. That combined with her already poor mower-driving skills is going to result in disaster. Just a few weeks ago, she almost killed HERSELF when she hit the light pole in her yard and flipped the mower over, jumping off just before being crushed. 

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Happy HallOween!

How can something so cute be so crass at the same time? Anyway, we all need a off-color humor from time to time---Cyanide and Happiness has provided the perfect Halloween example for us! 

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Ghoul on a Stool

Move over, Elf on The Shelf....This Halloween season, its all about Ghoul on a Stool! According to the product's website, "The Ghoul on a Stool™ is a Halloween story of a mischievous, fun, candy making ghoul who encourages kids to be kind and to do a good deed everyday. We not only want to teach your kids to be good, but to also do good. We hope you enjoy making new family memories with the Ghoul on a Stool™."

The cute little ghoul and his accompanying book on are on sale at the website listed above fro $19.97. So, for less than $20, you can start a wonderful Halloween tradition with your family, encouraging an atmosphere of kindness and community service. And, its still not as creepy as its Christmas rival, that freaky Elf on the Shelf thing! It's also available through Amazon and at Walmart.

Monday, October 10, 2016

Halloween Postage Stamps

Have you picked up your official United States Post Office issued Halloween Forever stamps yet?  Released Thursday, September 29th, these cute, yet spooky jack-o-lantern stamps were the first ever Halloween stamps issued in the US by the post office.

Paul Montanari carved each jack-o-lantern and then Sally Andersen-Bruce photographed them. Art director, Derry Noyes, supervised and designed the finished product.

“It is my hope that these stamps will rekindle special memories for everyone mailing or receiving postcards, letters and packages with these stamps affixed,” said U.S. Postal Service Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice President Joseph Corbett in a press release.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

All is Vanity

I love optical illusions in art. I especially love when the optical illusion involves a we have here in this famous piece, All is Vanity. It was drawn in 1892 by Charles Allan Gilbert and later sold to Life Magazine, which sold prints. You can read more about it at Deceptology

Friday, October 7, 2016

Skeleton Cupcakes

For Skeleton Week's Foodie Friday post, I wanted to share these cute skeleton cupcakes from All Day Chic. You can find the full tutorial on the website, but these look easy enough. The best part...they use white chocolate/yogurt covered pretzels. I LOVE dipped pretzels, lol. 

Thursday, October 6, 2016

The Skull of Hurricane Matthew

It's Thursday, and we're trucking right along with Skeleton Week here on Theresa's Halloween Wonderland! The topic of today's blog was actually rather unplanned, but those who study the creepy and unexplained know that sometimes a little synchronicity shows up in the least expected places!

Yesterday, my Facebook feed was flooded with an interesting news story. Meteorologists and scientists all over North America are closely watching Hurricane Matthew, which is expected to hit the United States. But what the weather map showed was a storm much scarier than anyone could have imagined. As the eye of the storm passed over Haiti, it took on a sinister appearance of a grinning skull in profile!

Obviously, this is the result of pareidolia. Our minds are hardwired to seek out patterns in random stimuli, and we're especially prone to trying to identify faces. With Halloween being so close, and the deadly destructive force of these types of storms, a skeleton face showing up so plainly is still quite an eerie phenomenon.

Stu Ostro, the senior director of weather communications and senior meteorologist at The Weather Channel posted the image above to his Twitter account, and according to, meteorologist Matt Devitt of southern Florida's WINK-TV posted and confirmed that a similar image from his broadcast was completely unaltered in any way. Please continue to keep those affected by Hurricane Matthew in your thoughts and prayers...and keep an eye out on those satellite images for any further anomalies!

Matt Devitt and Hurricane Matthew satellite image

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Skeleton Jewelry

Today's Skeleton Week blog is all about skeleton/skull jewelry. When you think about it, the idea of skeleton jewelry is a little weird; you're adoring the outside of your body with what is INSIDE your body. It works, though! Skeleton jewelry is both beautiful and a little macabre. It's perfect for the Halloween season or year round. I've picked a few notable and affordable pieces from various Etsy sellers---go check 'em out!

From alwaysanchors

From TheGoblinCave

From 2MeanGirlsBoutique

From JStrendz

From Horribell

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

The Skeleton Dance

Welcome to the first ever Theme Week here on Theresa's Halloween Wonderland! This week, there will be a new SKELETON post every day! You might see some skulls and/or bones make their way in, but skeletons will be the stars of the blog this week! I wouldn't say I'm a huge fan of skeletons, but I do think they are a beautiful and interesting part of Halloween imagery, and incorporated the right way, can make any Halloween celebration extra spooky!

Today, I'm sharing a video that I've watched about a million times. It's the 1929 Walt Disney Silly Symphony classic, The Skeleton Dance. The music was composed by Carl Stalling, with sections borrowed from Edvard Grieg. It was Disney's first Silly Symphony production, and was animated by Ub Iwerks. For more info: Wikipedia

Monday, October 3, 2016

Skeleton Week: Van Gogh's Skull

Happy Skeleton Week! Since Halloween is fast approaching, I thought it might be fun to start throwing in a few theme weeks, starting with an underrated icon of the season: the skeleton! Each day this week, expect a new post dealing with skeletons, bones, or skulls....starting with today's art feature!

You've probably seen this image before, but did you know that its actually a painting by famed artist, Vincent Van Gogh? This oil on canvas masterpiece is entitled Skull of a Skeleton with Burning Cigarette. It is believed to have been painted during the winter of 1885-1886 while Van Gogh was attending art classes at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Antwerp. Since 1973, the painting has been on a permanent loan at the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam. Definitely check out the Wikipedia page for this painting for more information!

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Jack Pumpkinhead

I love this picture! At first glance, it is VERY Halloween-y with the jack-o-lantern head guy. But, it really doesn't have anything to do with Halloween....

This is a still shot from the 1985 movie, Return to Oz, starring a very young Fairuza Balk as Dorothy. The movie is loosely based on several of L. Frank Baum's Oz novels and introduces Jack Pumpkinhead to the big screen. If you're familiar with the Oz books, you probably recognize this hilarious, yet chivalrous character. I really like the way he is portrayed here, and he does give off quite an autumn vibe!

Saturday, October 1, 2016

Christmas Decorations Before Halloween

If you belong to or follow ANY Halloween Facebook page, then you've seen this meme---probably multiple times, lol. I thought it was pretty funny and sort of fitting for my own life right now. As Halloween enthusiasts, we are the ONLY house on our block so far to put up any outdoor Halloween decorations. However, some of the exterior decorating has been a comedy of errors. Last weekend, my boyfriend started stringing up our purple and orange Halloween house lights. Unfortunately, we were one strand too short. A busy schedule of scouts, baseball, and jujitsu hasn't left any available time to remedy the situation, so for a week now, my house has had an unlit, partial strand of what looks like Christmas lights across our facade.

I'm sure our neighbors think we're absolutely insane. Not only did I start with the outdoor decorations in mid-September, but now we have unlit, sagging (some of our light clips needed replacing as well) lights that for all intents and purposes LOOK exactly like Christmas lights, lol. Oh well. At least the inside decorations look absolutely fabulous!

Anyway, more on topic with this meme...when do YOU put out your Christmas decorations? I won't let my boyfriend even start on Christmas until the day after Thanksgiving, which is pretty hypocritical of me since I start decorating for Halloween in August. Let me know in the comments when you start decorating!