Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Funny Bones

Perfect mix of sweet and salty!

You will need:

1 (12 ounce) package of white chocolate chips
36 pretzel sticks of various sizes
72 mini marshmallows (about 1 cup)

1. Place the white chips in a double boiler over simmering water and melt, stirring frequently. As soon as they are done melting, remove the pan from the heat.

2. Stick marshmallows onto both ends of the pretzels, with the marshmallows' flat sides parallel to the pretzel.

3. Dip each pretzel in the chocolate and lift out with a fork, letting the excess drip back in the bowl.

4. Lay the bones on a baking sheet and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Store in an airtight container.


5. Bones look best when stacked together on a plate.


Monday, October 28, 2013

Yummy Mummy

October has been crazy busy. I have a feeling that it is not going to slow down anytime soon either. In between throwing a large bonfire, planning a Halloween party at the library, and taking Emerson to a couple of Halloween shindigs, we sat down together for some easy craft fun.

For this project you will need a toilet paper tube, gauze, tape, a piece of white paper, googly eyes (or something that can be used as eyes) and candy.

Start by tracing two circles on a white piece of paper. cut the circles just inside the traced line so it will fit inside of the tube.

Cut the toilet paper tube in half.

Tape the white circles inside of each half of the tube.

Cut off a length of gauze. Make it long enough that it will wrap around the tube several times. Tape one end to the tube and start wrapping, overlapping as needed to create dimension.

Tuck in the other end of the gauze or tape it down.

Add googly eyes. I could not find any so I used foam stickies. Googly eyes would look better, I think.

Stuff with candy! These would make cute classroom treats.

Only a few more days left in October. I am loving the cooler temps and snuggling down with my favorite blanket to watch Dexter and Walking Dead. Soon, we will all be Christmas shopping and baking treats for the holidays. I am looking forward to all of it but somewhere, deep in the recesses of my subconscious, I am already yearning for January and the slow, quiet nature of winter and just being.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Re-claimed, Re-loved, Re-used Sunday

Goodwill Bag Bonanza!
1. BagDaddy Lunch Bag - 1.98
2. Small floral purse for Emerson -1.99
3. Structured bag for work - 4.99

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Zombie Shooter

If Darryl were to walk in on a Zombie bash, I am pretty sure this is what they would be serving at the bar.
It looks like a bloody brain and has the mouthfeel of curdled milk but it doesn't taste all that bad.

I didn't have shot glasses so I made this in a large wineglass. I am sure the presentation would be ten times better if you used the correct glass.

You will need:

- 1 ounce of peach schnapps
- 1 teaspoon of Bailey's Irish Cream
- Grenadine
- Shot glass (clear glass is essential for maximum eww factor)

1. Pour the peach schnapps into a shot (or clear) glass.

2. Float the Bailey's Irish Cream on top of the schnapps.

3. Dribble a few drops of grenadine on top of the Bailey's. Take it nice and slow. You want the "blood" to seep into the brain crevasses.

4. Make zombie-like noises and drink up.

Looks like this brain was slightly scrambled.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Re-claimed, Re-loved, Re-used

1. Creepy, Naked Man from an Antique Store in Quincy, IL.
2. Cornucopia for 1.00 at yard sale
3. Retro Halloween Cards - not vintage but still cute and I don't feel bad using these up - .25

My two compadres and I went to Spoonriver Drive last weekend. I think the only thing we bought from the actual booths was fudge and lunch. The real deals were at the yard sales found throughout the towns and back roads. My tactic next year will be to focus on them a bit more than the actual commercial stands.

I will not be posting Re-claimed, Re-loved, and Re-used as much this winter as I do in the Spring/Summer months but here and there I may highlight a deal I found in some shop. If any of you find something you are wanting to shout to the world, let me know and we can do a guest post!! Everyone loves bragging about a good deal!! 

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Link Love - Halloween Style

Skull and Bones chocolates made from ice cube trays.             

Whiskey Applesauce

I am totally making these easy lace tablecloth ghosts!
Instructions here.
Neon Paint Dipped Pumpkins from a Night Owl Blog

Spooky Shadow Projector at Oriental Trading Company

Lunging Zombie Creature at Halloween Express
Modern Parents Messy Kids Site

Paper Haunted House by Design Sprinkle

Make your own Ghost PiƱata or make a whole family of them :)

Create cool art with the My Monster Bubblewriter Book by Linda Scott.

A whole bunch of fab Halloween ideas and free printables over at Martha Stewart's site.

More FREE (30+) Halloween printables from Apartment Therapy!!

Halloween Garlands to make!

This has absolutely nothing to do with Halloween but who can resist a Vegan Baklava Cheesecake.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Picnic To-Go

There have been so many times that I have spotted the perfect picnic spot only to realize that I have none of the stuff required for a suitable picnic. As I was browsing through a magazine the other day, I came across an article on Fall picnics. The photography was beautiful, the scenery in the spread was perfect, it was the quintessential picnic. And it was simple and basic. So, why not prep a basket with all the essentials and keep it in your vehicle's trunk so you would have it the next time a picnic beckoned? All you would need to add is food. Even crackers and cheese counts! 

I grabbed my old picnic basket and filled it up with the following items:

A melamine serving platter or large plate for prep work and a sharp sheathed knife

 Napkins, a disposable table covering, and a trash bag.

A couple of pie pans to use as sturdy, washable plates
Thrift silverware wrapped in dish towels and tied with twine
Enamelware bowls
Jars for drinkware


 Small lunch bags for single servings of chips, pretzels, or other dry foods.
Just roll them down for easy access.

                                      Blankets for those chilly afternoons or to lay on the ground

                                                       A little one to share a picnic with :)

Can anyone think of anything I missed that would make an impromptu picnic more enjoyable?

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Creepy Terrarium

This is a simple creepy terrarium project using empty pickle, jelly, or mason jars.
You will need:
Jars with lids
Objects (you could go crazy here....bugs, crows, skeletons, body parts, etc)
Hot glue gun

Start by gluing a twig onto the lid of a jar so that it stands straight up. Make sure the twig fits inside the jar before doing this though :)

Hot glue your objects to the twig.
A variation on this is to paint the twig and objects white or black for a monochromatic look but I liked mine looking more natural.
Hot glue green floral moss around the base of the twig. You can find floral moss in the craft department of most stores.

Carefully place the jar upside down over the lid and screw it on.







Friday, October 4, 2013

Creepy and Gross Buffet Ideas for Halloween

As a kid one of my favorite things at any Halloween bash was the table covered with bowls of food. Not the food you eat but the food mimicking gross entrails, slimy worms, ooey eyeballs and all sorts of nasties. The food was always easily identifiable as cold spaghetti and jello but it was still engaging enough that I couldn't resist sticking my hand in it. Nowadays, cold spaghetti doesn't stand a chance with all the cool (and sick) ideas out there. I stayed away from some of the more grotesque food ideas, but I did include a few that may make your bile rise up in your throat, so be warned.

 Before the recipes though, here are a few ideas for a gross-out texture buffet for the kiddos.

Dried Apricots - dried up tongues
Peeled Grapes - Eyeballs
Soft Flour tortilla with a little oil on it - flayed skin
Feed Corn - Teeth
Corn silk - Hair
Baby pickles with pistachio shells stuck in the tips for witch fingers
Overcooked rice and raisins for maggots and bugs
Mango slices in pudding - tongues in sauce
Olives in cooking oil - cat eyeballs
Marshmallows with oil - guts
Dried apple slices - ears
Blanched Peeled tomato - heart

Slimy Worms

This beats cold spaghetti any day. It may be a bit more time-consuming but these are very realistic. 

Note: For this recipe, it's important to use a tall, slim container to hold the straws, such as a 1 liter orange juice or milk carton (be sure to use something with a 4 cup capacity). The straws should fit tightly together. If you use too large a container, the gelatin will run right back out before it sets. Also, be sure to buy the straws with the flexible neck, as they give the worms the most realistic "earthworm" appearance. Recipe makes about 100 long worms. 

1 pkg. (6 oz) purple gelatin (
raspberry or grape work well)
3/4 oz. unflavored gelatin
3 C. boiling water
3/4 C. whipping cream
green food coloring, as needed
100 plastic straws

1. In a medium, heat safe mixing bowl, stir together plain and flavored gelatin powders.
2. Pour boiling water over, stirring until gelatin is fully dissolved.
3. Allow gelatin to cool til only slightly warm.
4. Stir whipping cream into the gelatin mixture. Stir in green food coloring (you'll probably need 10 drops or more) until your gelatin gets that purpley-brown-grey color of earthworms.
5. With your 100 straws fully extended and snug in your chosen container, pour the gelatin mixture over the straws, filling the container.
6. Cover container and chill at least 8 hours. You can make them and store them this way up to two days in advance of your Halloween party.
7. Remove straws from their container (cutting or ripping a disposable container away is easiest).
8. With hot tap water running, place batches of 4-5 straws under hot running water for a couple quick seconds.
9. Remove "worms" from their straw casings, pressing with fingers. Set on waxed paper to set up.
10. Repeat until all worms are removed.
12. Chill, covered, on waxed paper at least 2 hours.
13. Serve in a chilled bowl, as pictured. Then watch all the kids gobble up this fun Halloween party food. 

Pureed Cockroach Dip

This is just a Walnut Dip with Garlic, of course. This recipe looks absolutely revolting but tastes yummy. The bit of texture from the pureed walnuts give it the perfect "crunchy bits of roach" character. Want to really gross out your guests (the goal behind all these gross recipes for Halloween, of course)? Stir in a couple of tablespoons of chopped walnuts after pureeing for an extra cockroachy crunch.
Lighten up the garlic if you are not trying to scare away vampires.

3 slices of whole wheat bread, well toasted
1/4 C. walnut pieces
4 cloves of garlic, coarsely chopped
2 tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
3/4 C. water
2 tbsp. fresh parsley, chopped
salt and pepper, to taste


1. In food processor (or by hand), crumble the toast into fine crumbs.
2. In food processor or blender, combine walnuts, garlic, and crumbs until all is finely ground.
3. Add lemon, oil, and parsley. Process until smooth. Add water as needed until desired consistency.
4. Add salt and pepper to taste.
5. This is one of those gross recipes for Halloween that's easy to make ahead of time. As it sits in the fridge, it gets a little darker-- a good thing for cockroach puree. The parsley may darken a bit and begin to look like bits of "cockroach skin".

And since we are on a roach kick......

Tasty Stuffed Roaches


I love dates but I always imagine biting down on a Madagascar cockroach while eating them. Try to eat one without thinking of the hissing sound they make. The little bit of crunch from the walnuts give them the perfect crisp- roach texture.

1/3 C. cream cheese, softened
1/4 C. walnuts, chopped semi-fine
20-30 dates, pitted

1. In a small bowl, combine cream cheese and nuts til well mixed.
2. Gently fill each date with cream cheese/nut mixture (you may have to split the dates slightly).
3. Serve on a platter decorated with several rubber roaches (if desired). 

(recipes taken from

Marinated Mozzarella Eyeballs



2 (8 oz. each)
 packages mini mozzarella di bufala balls, drained
1/3 C. extra virgin olive oil
6 sundried tomatoes, chopped
1 1/2 tsp. dried thyme
2 tsp. dried oregano
2 tsp. dried basil
2-3 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
Crushed red pepper, to taste
Sea salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Irises and Pupils:
Unpitted green olives, as needed (about 20)
Black olives, as needed (about 10)
1 disposable plastic straw

1. To make the marinated mozzarella balls, combine the drained mozzarella, oil, sundried tomatoes, herbs, garlic, red pepper, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Stir gently to mix. Marinate a few hours, up to 24.
2. To create the "iris" of your eyeball, cut the top away from one green olive with a sharp knife. You should end up with a nice round little dome.
3. Using the end of a straw, poke a hole through the middle of your iris and remove the bit of olive. This is where you will place your pupil.
4. To create "pupils," stick the end of a straw into a black olive and pull out a straw-hole-shaped piece. This little round piece of olive is your pupil.
5. Place a "pupil" in the middle of each "iris." Repeat process until you have enough pupils and irises for all of your mozzarella balls.
6. To assemble your eyeballs, drain the marinade away (I re-use mine for pasta or salads) and place your mozzarella balls on a serving platter. I sometimes line my trays with lettuce or cabbage for effect, and to keep the eyeballs from sliding around too much.
7. Place one set of iris and pupil on top of each eyeball. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Be gentle to avoid knocking the irises off of your mozzarella balls! If they don't want to stay, use a sharp knife to cut a small flat area on the mozzarella balls for your olive irises.

Sewer Water Halloween Punch

Be sure to serve this Halloween punch drink in a clear bowl allow your guests to get the whole effect of its gross appearance. Serves about 12.

PS - there are recipes out there for turd cookies, if you so desire to take this to another plane......


7 C. fresh orange juice with pulp
1.5 liters (3/4 of a 2 liter bottle) Dr. Pepper
Vodka (if you are wanting an alcoholic version)


1. In a large, clear punch bowl combine the orange juice, Dr. Pepper, and vodka (if using).
2. Fill a separate container or ice bucket with ice.
3. Fill each punch glass with ice before serving. 

Cannibal Brain


The basic recipe is based off of one from Better Homes and Gardens. Feel free to spice it up anyway you would like. Me? I wouldn't eat this. Ever. Ech.
One will need a Jello brain mold to make this recipe. They can be found online or at major stores.


3 lbs. shrimp, peeled, cooked, deveined
2 small roasted red peppers, julienned
1 green onion, sliced into 2" pieces, then julienned

Gelatin Mixture:
2 1/2 C. chicken broth
1 1/2 tbsp. (1 1/2 envelopes) unflavored gelatin
1 tsp. lemon zest
1/4 C. fresh lemon juice
1/2 C. tomato paste
3 cloves minced garlic
1 tbsp. honey
1-2 tsp. Cajun or other seasoning
Pinch salt

1. your shrimp into the Jello brain mold, tails facing the middle of the brain. It's best if you layer them into the brain mold with the tails facing the middle, according to each "hemisphere" of the brain. This will give you the most realistic look. Tuck the shrimps in close together.
2. Drop bits of roasted pepper and green onion in around the shrimp. These should look like veins and nerves when you're finished.
3. Repeat, alternating between shrimp and vegetables, until you fill your Jello brain mold.
4. Now make the gelatin. In a small saucepan, bring the chicken broth to a boil. Remove from heat and stir in the unflavored gelatin.
5. Stir in the lemon zest, juice, tomato paste, garlic, honey, cajun seasoning, and a pinch of salt.
6. Pour this mixture over the shrimp in your brain mold, filling to the top. Discard any extra. With a rubber spatula, smooth the top of your shrimp and gelatin to create a smooth surface.
7. Refrigerate until firm, at least several hours.
8. To unmold, set your Jello brain mold in a bowl of hot water for a few seconds. Place a serving tray underneath, then flip your mold over. The brain should pop right out. This is one of the easiest gross Halloween foods to make in advance!

A Few More Ideas I found....

(Click on the links for recipes)

Used Q-Tips. Really funny! Stick a mini marshmallow onto either side of a thin, trimmed straw. Dip the end of each marshmallow in warm caramel for "earwax." Let set on waxed paper.

Meatloaf Hand

Pastry Intestines

For all you Zombie lovers out there.....Meat Man.

Dexter blood, suckers.

And finally, a cool way to mark all of your dishes. Paint rocks black and let dry. Using a lighter color, paint on the names of your dishes.