Thursday, April 30, 2015


During a recent press event to promote her new album, Bette Midler was repeatedly asked about Hocus Pocus — Walt Disney’s beloved 1993 movie about a trio of evil sister witches who are brought back from the dead, and set out to drink the youth from Salem’s children, and perform a seriously catchy pop number..... You gotta love it! If you haven't seen it... (hard to believe) Seriously.... you need to pick it up and watch it!

In fact, several news sources say lots of social media posts involve fans asking for a sequel. “chuckles,” Midler responded. “You have to go to send in your cards to the Walt Disney company. The ball’s in their court.”

Well, Midler leaned into that suggestion by updating her bio at the top of the page with this: “Inundate the Disney company, because I have canvassed the girls and they are wiling to do it, but we have no say in it, so if you want a HOCUS POCUS 2, ask the Walt Disney company. You have been SO adorable. This has been most enlightening. SISTAHS!”

Najimy wrote in an email to BuzzFeed News, “I have read Bette’s quote and I agree.

The outpouring of love from Hocus-ites has been astounding. The creativity of their Sanderson sisters costumes, posters, artwork, t-shirts, statues, TV stills, photos, compliments and line quotes have blown up social media and I want them to know … We see and appreciate it all. When a film is being shot, you never quite know the impact.. If it’ll be a hit or a miss, and..with this one … we hear y’all loud and clear! A sequel is totally in The Disney company’s hands — And it will be exciting to see what transpires!”

Meanwhile, in response to a Tweet from BuzzFeed News’ Jarett Wieselman asking about her interest in returning, Sarah Jessica Parker wrote, “Yep. I’m in.”  While Disney hasn't responded formally,  they say they are definitely considering it!

We need to keep sending those e mails, cards and letters..... so be sure to  put it on the top of your To Do List today!

Thursday, April 23, 2015


I think today just might be a good project day.

As I was flying around on the www, I came across a photo from Esty, and I went to check it out. Unfortunately, it was no longer available, but I wanted to share it anyway.

This is how you get those creepy creative juices flowing....You find really cool stuff that you can make yourself!

These silhouette framed photos are so cool, and pretty easy to make, believe it or not.

The easiest way would be to take the picture above, and enlarge it on a copier or printer. Cut them to fit  into the frame, and *poof* you're done!

Yes, it really is that simple.

Now, if you want to create your own, you can, too! You can use this silhouette template or one similar.... and you can find lots of different kind of "wing templates" on the www. Perfect for creating your own masterpiece!

I see a whole wall of these,  one for each member of the family, hanging in the hallway or dungeon. You get the picture....

Now, that's a good project day!

Monday, April 20, 2015


Happy Monday, Halloweenies. I bet you could use a little pick-me-up today.... and it doesn’t get much better than a chocolate dipped strawberry, does it?
These strawberry ghosts are cute, easy to make, and perfect for Halloween, or anytime you need a sweet treat! This particular recipe comes from Miss Candiquik's blog, and it's as easy as it is sweet... here's what you'll need:
  • 1 (16 oz) package Vanilla CANDIQUIK Coating
  • 24 Fresh strawberries
  • Mini chocolate chips
  1. Melt Candiquik in tray according to directions on package.
  2. Place a large piece of wax or parchment paper on a flat surface.
  3. Dip strawberries in melted Candiquik Coating, remove and allow the excess coating to pour off onto the wax paper to form the “tail” of the ghost; slide the strawberry back and set on wax paper to dry.
  4. Before coating has set, place two mini chocolate chips on as the eyes. For the mouth, cut off the tip of a mini chocolate chip and place on the strawberry with the bottom side facing up.
And who said "Mondays suck"?  For more super sweet treats, be sure to check out Miss Candiquik's blog!

Wednesday, April 15, 2015


I got an e mail from a fellow Halloweenie, Melissa.... who was thrilled to find these cool towels on Amazon, and then quickly disappointed to find out.... they were Sold Out!

Aaaagggghhhh! Don't you hate when that happens?! What to do, what to do? Well Melissa, you make 'em yourself, that's what you do!

You can do this! Oh, yes you can! And they'll look very similar to the ones pictured here.... All you need are some basic sewing skills, some hand towels with a simple black and white pattern, some black thread and terry cloth fabric. (Depending on how many towels you want to decorate, you shouldn't need more than about a half yard of fabric)

Using the pattern I've included, just reduce or enlarge it on your printer or copier, and measure it against the bottom of the towel, to make sure it fits (the whole way) across the bottom.

Then take the black terry cloth fabric, cut it against the pattern, and with a few simple stitches on the sewing machine (or by hand, whichever you prefer) attach them (make sure the bats are hanging upside down) to the bottom of each towel.

Now, I wouldn't attach the googly eyes.... I think I'd like them just solid black.... but if you want to, you could make eyes with some scrap black and white fabric or googly eyes, and attach with some fabric glue. (*If you do this, be sure when you want to clean them, to only gently hand-wash, because those eyes surely wouldn't make it through your washing machine...)

Now you'll need to find a gothic-looking towel stand to complete the look.... but I say it's well worth it.

See.... I told you, you could do this!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015


Wow! I can't believe that time is just flying by. Halloween is practically around the corner!

You know, it's never too early to start planning projects and events, because the key to a truly frightful holiday season is all in the details. Especially if you have a lot of DIY projects you want to do, before Halloween gets here.

Saving jars and cans to make lanterns, buying fabric to make some killer costumes is a must.....  but one of my most requested DIY projects is my Bloody Handprint Flower Pots! These really are so much fun to make, you'll love making them all year long.
These are fab-boo-lous for potted plants.... and they're party perfect because you can use them as tablescapes and serving containers for your treats and eats. 

I have so many of these I've made, and I always get requests to make some for friends when Halloween comes around. I think I've had these particular ones for about 5 or 6 years, and they still look amazing.
Just paint the pots with a base of white acrylic craft paint (gloss) let dry. Then dry-brush black acrylic craft paint (gloss) over top, letting the white show through. Let dry again. Then here comes the fun part..... dip your hand in red acrylic craft paint (gloss) and make bloody hand prints over the pot. Don't forget to make a few bloody drips along the rim of the pot, too.
Also, if you want to keep them looking new, (or keep them outside) you'll want to use a clear gloss sealer to protect them. Be sure to follow the directions carefully on the sealer, to make sure you get the best result.
See how easy that was? The best part.... it really freaks out the neighbors if you do this outside!

Thursday, April 9, 2015


You may not normally think much about your spine, rib cage, and pelvic bones when you sit in an ordinary chair, but Sam Edkins' "Anatomically Correct" seats are more than ordinary. These chairs combine Victorian furniture design with human skeletons and circulation, creating a whimsical object.
But this luxurious whimsy doesn't come cheap: each chair costs £595. But even if it's out of your price range.... it's still fun to look, and also very inspiring! Hand-painted furniture is very popular right now.... and some of these designs could give you great ideas (and nightmares) how fun!

If you're an artistic type, you could paint a similar design, or make a transfer to apply to the fabric. The possibilities are endless.
For more information on the fab-boo-lous chairs, and to see other amazing chair designs, you need to check out the website!


Friday, April 3, 2015


What a great idea for this upcoming dreary, rainy, scary weekend....

Who doesn't love to curl up with a good scare-your-pants-off book? Here at The Manor we've got shelves of books by Stephen King.... it is a must-have for every Halloween Homemaker, you know.

And there's no one who does it better.... he is after all The KING....

So let's review the Top 5 Stephen King books, according to Richard Thomas at Buzz Feed Books.... Check out to see if your favorite made the list, or maybe there's one you haven't read yet! Take it away, Richard....

Stephen King is one of the most prolific authors in the world, with more than 50 books in print, and more coming out every year. He also happens to be one of my favorite storytellers, an author I’ve read more than any other. In fact, I’ve read every book he’s ever written, so that puts me in the unique position of being a “constant reader,” as he calls us in his introductions — not an expert, but certainly a passionate follower and devout fan, though not his “number one fan.”
When it comes to putting together an “essential” reading list, I’m sure many books will be left off, some of your favorites, perhaps. But I had to whittle this down to what I consider his best work, his most important books. These are the 10 (or so) books that I think are “must-reads.” I don’t think he’s written a terrible book, ever, but that’s just me. So many people criticize King, without even realizing that they enjoyed movies that were written by him: Shawshank Redemption, The Green Mile, and Stand By Me, for example. I mean, everyone knows Carrie, and The Shining, and It — the books and films that made him famous. But hopefully this list will not only give you a solid list of essential books, but maybe even turn you on to a title or two that you’ve never heard of. Good luck, and happy reading.
The Stand

1. The Stand

It’s a big book, the uncut version clocking in at 1,100 pages, but it needs to be this big. We have so many storylines to follow, people to root for, and miles to cover, crossing the United States, one horrific moment after another. We root for Mother Abigail, the spiritual leader; Larry Underwood, the rock star; Nick Andros, a deaf man from the Midwest; and Frannie Goldsmith, a teenager. We meet the “Trashcan Man” and of course, the dark spirit, Randall Flagg.
While people often list The Stand, The Shining, or It as his best work, if I had to pick one as my favorite, it has to be The Stand. This story is a rollercoaster ride of tension and hope, a beautiful narrative that left me in tears.
The Shining

2. The Shining

Due to the famous film by Stanley Kubrick, and the performance of Jack Nicholson, this may be King’s most well-known book. I recently re-read it for the first time in 30 years and it still holds up. And the ending, the father-son story — I can see why King hated Kubrick’s version; it lacked so much heart. Where The Stand holds tension over 1,100 pages, The Shining is an exploration of one man, Jack Torrance, falling apart, losing his mind to the Overlook Hotel, and the abuse and suffering that his family endures. I wondered, when I re-read this, if it would still scare me — and you know what, it did! And the same places, too — those damn hedge animals. This is really a classic King title, and one that puts the vulnerable Danny Torrance (REDRUM! REDRUM!) front and center, while also flipping back and forth between the quickly eroding mind of Jack, and the worrisome, helpless mother, Wendy. This is an iconic book, another essential King read.

3. IT

Another massive book, also over 1,100 pages, It is another favorite King book of mine. It introduces us to the horror that lurks in the sewers of Derry, Maine, and a creepy clown known as Pennywise. We follow a cast of misfits, “The Losers Club,” first as children, and then later, as adults. What’s the line? “We all float down here.” Not only does King build on the vulnerability of a handful of kids trying to fight and defeat a terrible presence after the disappearance and eventual death of Georgie Denbrough, but King makes them come back to face the evil as adults. There has always been some controversy over the “bonding scene” between Beverly and the boys, with many fans saying it put them off the book altogether, but I never saw it that way — more like soldiers surviving a war, a blood oath and bond that could never be severed. It’s dark for sure, though.
The Dead Zone


4. The Dead Zone

I think what draws me to this book over many other King titles is the noble, but complicated, cause of Johnny Smith. Imagine if you were this man, or if you knew him, and he said that certain events were going to transpire? That the president, or some other politician, was going to cause the end of the world through his selfish acts? You’d say he was crazy, right? So we root for Johnny, because we know he’s telling the truth, we know the obstacles he’s up against, and we want to see him win. And of course anything involving luck, the occult, or any sort of supernatural powers is always a fascinating read. We feel for Johnny when his fiancĂ©e moves on; we see the sad, sordid life he’s living, and we feel sympathy, empathy. And in the end, he is the hero, and we’re one of the few who know about his secret. And that’s part of King’s appeal, sometimes, that he lets us peek behind the curtain, lets us know about what dark magic is happening in the shadows. It’s also one hell of a good movie, starring Christopher Walken.
The Long Walk

5. The Long Walk

This is such an original book. Long before The Hunger Games, there was The Long Walk. Originally written under his pseudonym, Richard Bachman, King’s The Long Walk first came out in paperback but was later collected in The Bachman Books. Part reinstated draft, part lottery, much like in It, King uses the vulnerability of youth in 100 young boys to show us a dark and horrific story, where only one boy will survive. And that’s part of what makes it such a compelling read, right? From the very beginning, we know they are all going to die, all but one. Who do we root for? Who do we hate? There are so many kids to know, with Raymond Garraty as the protagonist. Over time, we get to know their stories, and everything changes. There are odds on the contestants; a heavy favorite is married; one may be the son of the Major, the man who runs the event; another, a loner, has alienated everyone but Ray; a group of the boys form “The Musketeers”— the plot getting more and more complicated, and heartbreaking, as the story unfolds. It’s a powerful book that’s sometimes overlooked when talking about Stephen King. And it’s a thin one, only a few hundred pages!

Wednesday, April 1, 2015


It's that time of year that most people who work in an office dread.... April Fool's Day. But if you're one of the many who just live for this stuff.... listen up.... This is your day! Have a blast and make it count, because you don't get another one until next year....

The Queen for one, loves a good scary prank.... But what if you're not sure how to pull off a prank? Then what do you do?

You just may need some professional prank help from the fine folks at April Fool! Here are a few good ones to help you get started. You might want to take some notes...

Donut Disappointment
Donut Disappointment
Buy a box of donuts from your favorite donut establishment (Krispy Kreme, Winchell's, etc.). Remove the donuts for your own consumption later. Place some brussel sprouts (or other non-delicious food of your choice) into the box. Leave the (closed) box on the counter for your victims to find!
Frozen Cereal Prank
Ice Krispies
The night before April Fool's Day, pour some cereal and milk into a bowl. Put the bowl into the freezer. The next morning take it out and pour a small amount of milk and few flakes of cereal on top. Then serve it to your victim and watch the struggle.
Pickled Head in a Jar Prank
Pickled Head
Print out a life-size color photo of a face, or a scary creature. Find a large glass jar. Cut the photo so it fits inside the jar (facing outward with the front of the photo pressed against the glass). Then add some water (if you want, laminate the photo first, or spray with waterproofing spray). Place the jar in the refrigerator. Now... just wait until your victim opens the fridge for a snack - then be ready to shout "April Fool's!"
Have I got you in the mood? Well, be sure to click here to find more great ideas! Happy April Fool's Day! Enjoy!