Friday, October 31, 2008


Happy Halloween! Hope everyone has a safe, fun-filled evening. Still waiting for our trick-or-treaters and it's 6:30. But we have an event going on down the street that ends at 7 so keep your fingers crossed. Real quick I wanted to share these cool Halloween treats my friend Julie made for today. I wish I had these sooner, they are so cool. They are "dead lady fingers" and "dead man hairy toes". They are made out of soft pretzel dough. Almonds for the nails and I'm not sure what is used for the hair. Some kind of herb thingy.
This is the "dead lady finger". Julie used red food coloring for the nail (almond).
This is the "dead man's hairy toe". I'm gonna have to ask Julie what she used for the hair.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Brenda's Blog

Okay, so I lied. I did have something to blog about. Andi turned me on to a really great blog. You all should check it out. It's called Country Romance at Heart, but it's on my side bar as Brenda's Blog . It's a really great blog. I know I already said that, but I thoroughly enjoyed reading what I could of it today. And like Andi mentioned on her blog awhile back, Brenda is having a Christmas present swap amongst bloggers. I think this sounds like such fun, that I am going to sign up with her today. You only have until November 7 to sign up. And reading Andi's blog today, she mentions that Brenda has opened an Etsy shop. Well I just had to check it out because it was food! I L-O-V-E me some food. Make sure you go to Brenda's blog and check this out too, yummy! So stop by and see Brenda, tell her Bonnie sent you by way of it?!!!!

I plan......

Not alot going on to blog about lately. I've learned, though, that if I go more than 2 days without blogging, some of you get worried, and I sure don't want that to happen. So today I'm gonna talk about some things I plan to do. I plan to get my haircut again, only shorter. I plan on visiting my friend, Cecile, and her family in Georgia, in December. I plan on spending Thanksgiving with my extended family, and do I mean extended. I will be going to Ocala to spend Thanksgiving with my ex-in-laws, Tootsie and Frank. My two sons will be there, my ex-husband, his aunt and uncle, a couple of cousins and of course, my wonderful husband. I'll explain that whole thing in another blog, lol. The Sunday before Thanksgiving I plan to spend with my sis-in-law, Missy, at her mother-in-laws for a pre-Thanksgiving dinner. We do this about every year and get to see good friends and family. I also plan on spending more than one day with Missy when she comes down for a visit. I plan on getting my Christmas shopping done early. I plan on going to see St. Augustine at Christmas. I love St. Augustine and have it on good authority (thanks, Cecile), that it's really beautiful. And finally, I plan on not missing more than 2 day a week for blogging.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Just a quick blurb...

Hut finally did another blog. He hasn't done one since Missy's birthday in September. Check out his blog SIMPLE MAN (my husband) Thanks.

Monday, October 27, 2008

'Tis the season.....

Well almost. After reading Granny Annie's blog the other day, where she was showing off this great cross, I went to Jamie Dawn's blog to check out these really neat crosses that she makes. Not only did I fall in love with the crosses, I thoroughly enjoyed her blog. I want to share her link and photos of her crosses just in case you are looking for that special event, or unique gift, or even stocking stuffers for Christmas.
Jamie makes cross necklaces out of four nails and colored wire. They come in 25 colors and cost $10 each or 3 for $25. You can order them by contacting her email address: And make sure you check out her blog at Jamie Dawn's Mindless Blather .

And for those of you who love scrappin' my sister in law, Missy and my very good friend, Cecile, have wonderful scrappin' goodies for sale on their websites.

My Ebay Store and My Paper Piecing Blog are two of Missy's creative stores.

This is a very small sampling of Missy's Paper piecings. She does both boys and girls in most of her work. She also does alot of one of a kind paper piecings. Check her won't be disappointed.

My friend Cecile actually does layout pages for scrapbooks. Her layouts are fantastic. I have bought quite a few myself because I haven't scrapped in about 10 years and my creative juices just aren't flowing. So having her layouts is going to be a big help to get me going again. I got the layouts I ordered from her in the mail today. They are superb and I can't wait to use them. She also puts wonderful cards and gift tags in her store that her sister in law Trina makes. These are wonderful too. I fell in love with her Christmas cards and bought some. I got them in the mail today , too and I have ordered more already. You can check out Cecile and Trina's goodies at Scrappin Cecile's Creations~ .

These are two samples of Cecile's layouts. She does a fabulous job with all of her creations. I absolutely love the "so stinkin' cute" one. I may have to buy it and then find some pictures to go with it later, lol.

These two are some of Trina's talent. The top photo is her "Give Thanks" fall cards. Very unique. And the snowmen are just a sampling of her Christmas gift tags. These are so adorable.
I hope you liked this small shopping trip. I figure it's never too early or too late to shop for loved ones. Please make sure you check out these very talented ladies.

We have a WINNER....

We have finally give the witch a name. The winner is......wait, wait, wait. Let me explain the scientific strategy that went into this.

First of all, we had 53 names to choose from with only a couple of duplications. But that was too many for Hut to handle by himself, so I thought I'd give him a hand. It was so overwhelming that we had to call in reenforcements. Wade and his girlfriend, Erin, came by to help us( we stayed up late to make sure everyone got into the competition, besides, the World Series was on.....Go Phillies). Needless to say, when they saw all the names, they looked like deers caught in the headlights. Our initial plan was to cut the list down to 10 names, put them in hat (or a plastic container, anyways) and pull the name. No matter how hard we tried, we could only cut it to 15. So 15 names went into the hat.

There were really great names. Thank you everyone that entered. I really enjoyed all the comments. Gary, you had the most traditional names. Sue, I loved your unique names and the definitions for them. That was great. Some of you guys gave me a headache just reading them, because I could tell you put alot of thought into them, like Hermoine Elizabeth Gingerbrick, or Penelope Gonagetcha Witcharini. And I have got to tell you, Cecile, that if we were picking just by the name we liked the best (and I tried to get them to change the rules, but no luck), Cole would have won because we all loved Tissy.

Oh but I have gotten off track here. I'm sure you guys are pulling your hair out right now wanting to know who won. Sorry, I tend to ramble on when I'm tired, nervous, get the picture. Anyways, meet the new witch on the block........


Yes, that's right. I know we had a couple of Hazel's out there, but someone put the Witch in front of it...and since she's an witch and Witch Hazel is a natural remedy....I think it's kind of appropriate.

Okay, Okay, I don't want you all to have to go back through all the names on the blog to find out how submitted this name. It was ..........


Congratulations. And thanks again everyone for playing along. I hope you had as much fun as I did.

Sunday, October 26, 2008


By: Jilly

1. Go to your pictures

2. Upload 4th picture of 4th folder

3. Post

4. Tag 4 of your friends

This is my Cosmo. He was 14 years old when he went to "Doggy Heaven" in March. He lived a good life and his is missed very much.

The 4 people I tag are Grannie Annie, Sue, Susie Q and Trina!

Now I want to wish Susie Q a very happy 52nd birthday. You all need to check out her blog,SUSIE Q and see what a wonderful trip to New York she took us on. It was soooo enjoyable and her wonderful husband foot the whole bill. Thanks again, Susie Q, for the great memories and I only hope my birthday can be 1/2 as great as yours. Have you heard from Brian yet?

Ghouls Night Out

The HOGMAN Lives!

Well we got lucky. It was pouring rain for most of the day, but the gods smiled down upon us and took the rain away in time for Ghouls Night Out. The City of Winter Haven does this every year as an alternative to trick or treating. They always do it the Saturday before though, just in case you still want to trick or treat in your own neighborhood. We always have such a good time. The City has put this event on for the past 10 years and Hut has always driven the hayride. I've missed a couple of the events due to work schedules. My feet always hurt when it's over, but it's a good hurt. I have lots of pics to share of the event.

The tractor and trailer before the hayride.....undecorated. The pictures were taking in front of the Orange Dome, which is a landmark in Winter Haven, that the City is going to demolition in the next few years. It was built in 1964 and housed exhibits for our Citrus Festival (which we no longer have.) The next picture is Hut driving down Cypress Gardens Boulevard on the way to the event so we can get it all decorated up.

The finished product. You can't see all the spiders I put all over it. Every year I buy spider rings to put all over the webs. The kids love it because they can take the rings and have a creepy souvenir of the hayride. We also have an univited guest who rode every ride this year. This scary skeleton. He was actually a fun addition to this year's ride.

Top photo is the Hogman on his tractor. Next photo is Hogman getting ready to take unsuspecting victims on a ride to the unknown. The bottom photo is the front of the tractor at night. The eyes on top of the gravestone light up and blink. Very creepy.

Unsuspecting victims on the ride. And our youngest rider to date. We had quite a few infants on the ride this year. Mom wanted this one to have a picture with the Hogman. We also had 3 dogs this year (sorry no pics). One was a service dog and the other 2 were there for the costume contest.

A couple of the dogs for the costume contest. These were an angel and Dracula. I also saw a 3-legged dog dressed like a pirate. It was a good time for everyone.

Crowds get there before sundown to start enjoying the event. The city closes down a couple of blocks in the downtown area to host the event. Local business owner keep their shops open later for people to browse and shop. It's a really fun event.

This was one of the first families there. They were all so cute. We had a couple of pirates, a witch, a pumpkin and Snow White.

A local church was taking photos to make money for their youth group. They had a couple of these cute scenes set up.

I'm not sure what business this was, but they were fantastic. The hearse has been here in the past. This year they put up a mini haunted house. The guy doing Jason was great! I missed a photo op earlier in the event, when he scared a boy really bad. The boy was about 13 and thought he was so tough( you know how kids are lol). Well Jason scared him so bad, the boy fell on his butt and then crab walked to get away. And I didn't have my camera. It was so funny though. The boy even laughed when he got his wits about him. Jason was nice enough to pose for me.

Goofing around before we get started. The Hogman is ready to go. And it seems he wants me as his first victim. Debbie (who works for the city) was nice enough to take a picture of the Hogman and his gypsy together. We never have pictures taken together. I was glad to have a camera this year and get some shots of the event. Next event for us downtown is Snow Central in December. I'll update you on that later.

Now a reminder that today is the final day for naming the witch. And today you all get 4 extra chances to name her. Good luck to everyone. You guys have made my brain hurt with all the names you've come up with. They are all fantastic and I'm just glad I'm not doing the judging. Tomorrow's post will be the winner.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

More Halloween Fun Facts.....

Halloween is an annual celebration, but just what is it actually a celebration of? And how did this peculiar custom originate? Is it, as some claim, a kind of demon worship? Or is it just a harmless vestige of some ancient pagan ritual?
The word itself, "Halloween," actually has its origins in the Catholic Church. It comes from a contracted corruption of All Hallows Eve. November 1, "All Hollows Day" (or "All Saints Day"), is a Catholic day of observance in honor of saints. But, in the 5th century BC, in Celtic Ireland, summer officially ended on October 31. The holiday was called Samhain (sow-en), the Celtic New year. One story says that, on that day, the disembodied spirits of all those who had died throughout the preceding year would come back in search of living bodies to possess for the next year. It was believed to be their only hope for the afterlife. The Celts believed all laws of space and time were suspended during this time, allowing the spirit world to intermingle with the living. Naturally, the still-living did not want to be possessed. So on the night of October 31, villagers would extinguish the fires in their homes, to make them cold and undesirable. They would then dress up in all manner of ghoulish costumes and noisily paraded around the neighborhood, being as destructive as possible in order to frighten away spirits looking for bodies to possess.

Probably a better explanation of why the Celts extinguished their fires was not to discourage spirit possession, but so that all the Celtic tribes could relight their fires from a common source, the Druidic fire that was kept burning in the Middle of Ireland, at Usinach.

Some accounts tell of how the Celts would burn someone at the stake who was thought to have already been possessed, as sort of a lesson to the spirits. Other accounts of Celtic history debunk these stories as myth.
The Romans adopted the Celtic practices as their own. But in the first century AD, Samhain was assimilated into celebrations of some of the other Roman traditions that took place in October, such as their day to honor Pomona, the Roman goddess of fruit and trees. The symbol of Pomona is the apple, which might explain the origin of our modern tradition of bobbing for apples on Halloween.

The thrust of the practices also changed over time to become more ritualized. As belief in spirit possession waned, the practice of dressing up like hobgoblins, ghosts, and witches took on a more ceremonial role.
The custom of Halloween was brought to America in the 1840's by Irish immigrants fleeing their country's potato famine. At that time, the favorite pranks in New England included tipping over outhouses and unhinging fence gates.

I thought these were some fun, interesting facts on the origin of Halloween as a whole. The last sentence about pranks I can verify as true because, 1) I'm from New England and 2) my mother told me how her older sister would do these pranks on Halloween. The tipping of the outhouses seemed to be the favorite prank.

I used Google to find out these fun facts for you guys, since you seemed to enjoy my other "history" lessons. I just wish Halloween was as safe nowadays as it was when I was a kid. The worst thing we had to fear was getting shaving cream in our eyes. That was the prank of the day back then, squirting people with shaving cream.

I want to thank everyone who has submitted names for the witch. As I've said before, it's gonna be a tough choice. I didn't realize how many fantastic names were out there and you guys are so creative with the names. You have today and tomorrow left to come up with a name (tomorrow you can actually submit 4 names, since we cut the contest short 4 days). Good luck and have fun. And please pray for the rain to stop so we can do our Halloween event tonight....Thanks.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

An Addendum (did I spell that right, lol)

I'm feeling a little guilty about changing the ending date for the "Name that Witch". So if you want....On Sunday the 26th, I will let everyone have 4 extra shots at naming the witch. That way the contest will still be over with but everyone will still have the same number of chances as if I went to the 30th. I tend to over explain things so I hope you all understood that. Monday, October 27 I will post an early blog so you will know who the winner is. Thanks for all the great names that have been submitted so far. It's really gonna be tough.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Changing the rules

The response to our "Name that Witch" contest has been phenomenal. So we decided to cut it short 4 days. We are going to end the contest on Sunday, October 26. We just feel like going to the end of the month is dragging it out. If you guys want to keep going until the 30th let me know. But I figure the sooner we pick a winner the sooner you get the yummy basket. And trust me, it has been VERY hard for me not to open it and sneak a snack. We are getting some really fantastic names from you guys. It's gonna be a tough choice. Glad Hut's handling that, lol.

And just a reminder for those of you who have little ghosts and goblins in the Winter Haven area ( and even if you don't). Ghouls night out is this Saturday, Oct. 25 from 6pm to 9pm. Come on out....dress up, trick or treat, check out vendors, local business will be open later, and stop by for a Hayride with the Hogman. It's all free, free, free. What a great way to spend a Saturday night.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Trick OR Treat

Tonight we have one more Halloween story. This story I also found in Today and Tonight magazine by Erica Smith. I thought this was pretty interesting.

Halloween is actually a true American tradition. Halloween's history is deeply routed in European culture. Early American colonists brought their fall customs with them. The Halloween we now celebrate is a blending of both European traditions and American Indian Folklore. Public events called "play parties" celebrated the harvest, where neighbors got together and danced, sang, read each others fortunes and told stories of the dead. Ghost stories and mischief-making were also very popular events and delighted colonists during long fall nights. By the 19th century, harvest festivals were very common but Halloween was not yet celebrated.The potato famine in Ireland caused an influx of Irish settlers who would bring the celebration of Halloween with them.

British and Irish traditions had Americans beginning to dress in costumes, going from house to house asking for food or money, in what eventually became today's "trick or treat". The practice probably dates back to All Souls' Day parades in England, where poor citizens would befor for food. Families would give them pasteries called "Soul Cakes" in return for their promise to pray for the family's dead relatives.

Dressing up in costumes comes from both European and Celtic roots. In the 1800s Americans came to embrace these customs. On Halloween, when it was believed that spirits came back to the earthly world, people were afraid they would encounter the spirits if they left their home after dark. People believed that if they wore masks, the ghosts wouldn't recognize them and would instead mistake them for other ghosts. People would also leave out bowls of food outside their homes in hope of appeasing the spirits and preventing them from attempting to enter.

We have come to make this a truly American holiday that is more about community and family fun, instead of ghosts, pranks and witchcraft.

It's Halloween! It's Halloween! The moon is full and bright! We shall see what can't be seen on any other night!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Where did Jack O'Lanterns come from?

Okay gang.... a little halloween history here. This history lesson comes from an article by Erica Smith that was in the "Today & Tonight" magazine. I found it pretty interesting, hope you do too.
Families have been making jack o'lanterns for centuries at Halloween. Irish myth tells of a man nicknamed "Stingy Jack". " According to the legend, Stingy Jack asked the Devil to have a drink with him. The Devil accepted. But Stingy Jack didn't want to pay for the drinks, so he convinced the Devil to turn himself into a coin for Jack to use to pay for the drinks. The Devil agreed, and when he became a coin, Jack decided to keep the money and put it into his pocket next to a silver cross. This prevented the Devil from changing back. Jack eventually let the Devil go free, but not before the got the Devil to promise not bother Jack for a year and that in the event that Jack should die, the Devil could not take his soul. When the year was up, Jack tricked the Devil again. This time he got the Devil to climb a tree to pick some fruit. While the Devil was in the tree, Jack carved the image of a cross in the bark of the tree. The Devil had to promise not to bother Jack for the next 10 years before he could come down. Not too long after that, Jack died. The legend has it that GOD would not allow such an unsavory figure into heaven. The Devil, keeping his promise and very upset by the tricks Jack had played on him, would not allow Jack into hell. The Devil sent Jack off into the night with just a burning coal to light his way. Jack put his coal in a carved out turnip and has been roaming the Earth ever since. The Irish called him Jack of the Lantern, which, of course, became Jack O'Lantern. Irish and Scottish people began making their own versions by carving scary faces in turnips and potatoes. They placed them in windows or near doorways to frighten away Stingy Jack and other evil spirits. The English used large beets. Immigrants from these countries brought the tradition of the Jack O'Lantern with them. They found a fruit, native to America, that would make perfect Jack O'Lanterns. You guessed it.....pumpkins. I thought this was very interesting and never truly realized how much our Celtic ancestors influenced our own Halloween. By the way.....the picture at the top is a Jack O'Lantern house....that's right....a house.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Busy, Busy Sunday

This picture has nothing to do with the blog. I gave the kitties this box to play with a couple of weeks ago and even though they have a new "Kitty Kondo" they still like to play with the box. That is Mayer in the box and you can see Oscar's paws attacking him.

It was a clear, cool, gorgeous day today. So I tried to take advantage of it. I stayed up until after midnight watching the Redsox beat the Rays so now there is a Game 7 being played tonight. The dogs managed to get me up at 7 this morning. So I got up, took them out and then decided I'd go to the walking trail and walk, something I haven't done in a long time. So I grabbed the headphones and headed over there. Boy you can tell I'm outta shape......I could only walk 3 took all I had to get that far. I used to be able to walk at least 6. Anyways, when I got home, hubby was up, cooking sausage biscuits. I walked in the door and told him it was too nice a day to stay cooped up in the house. So we decided to put the fence up in the backyard. It took us most of the day, because we are old and had to take many breaks. But we got it up. And it looks good if I do say so myself. And then, because he was on a roll, Hut hung up these really cool leaf faces that I got a Cracker Barrel about a month ago. And I had a welcome sign that used to hang on a plant hanger in the front yard, but Hut hung it up on the house. Looks great if I do say so myself. The dogs and cats LOVED being outside all day. Now they are all sleeping soundly. All in all it was a GREAT day!
Yeah the fence it finally up!!!

Here is my welcome sign on the front of the house. The sign is from one of my favorite stores in Winter Haven.....O'Keefe's. You can see part of one of my windchimes hanging in front of it. I love anything with the sun and moon face on it. That is what is on most of my wind chimes.

My leaf people on the front of the house. Below are some close up shots of them. I just love them.