Thursday, April 30, 2009


was amazing! I will not have my laptop until tomorrow so I cannot upload photos.

But Terror on the Fox was everything I hoped it would be. Got to say "hi" to the Bad Boys :)

Both Terror or Rural Street and Dominion of Terror (WI loves "terror" :) Were both great!

I will post more after I get my laptop tomorrow.

Monday, April 27, 2009

From Milwaukie, Oregon

to Milwaukeem, Wisconsin.

We leave tomorrow morning to head to our fourth Hauntcon. We were considering not going, you know, the economy and all, but when we found that we are getting a tour of Terror on the Fox - we had to go.

We have learned a lot for the guys (and I believe one girl now) at Bad Boys Scenic Design. There reason we have the church facade on the front of the shop is because of their teaching and got all those cool mini LED spotlights that light the whole yard....on one 12V adaptor!!!! I have not thrown a breaker during Halloween in years! :)

We are (actually husband is) presenting his seminar on how to make a 3-Axis Talking Bucky Skull. To be fair, I did design the lovely full color hand-out :) I did threaten to teach the "How to Design a Graveyard" seminar again.....but I didn't want to work that hard :)

Look forward to meeting up with our friends and some of our favorite vendors (EFX Tek, Froggy's Fog, Skeleton Store. Leonard and Jeannie to name a few). And the immensely fun Costume Ball!!

I will try to update the blog while I am there and hopefully Twitter a bit.....BTW - T-Mobile does not let you Twitter from your phone :(

Switching to AT&T and getting an iPhone sounds better every day :)

At day at the

post office. I spend my lunch sending out almost all of the Haunters Video Awards out in the mail. BTW - It cost $32 to mail a finalist award to Canada!!!! Good thing she did not win the heavy first place award ;) No worries! The Dead Spider Haunt is sooooooo worth it! One of our favs!

BTW. again - If anyone knows how to get a hold of the Lowe's, let us know :) Theirs is the only address we are missing.

Also mailed out a few soaps to my lovely winners. (Because, only good looking people read this blog :)

I am glad to finally be done with the awards. The next step is to give the website a much needed face lift, and I think I found just the man to help me!! Guy at House Bloodthorn has agreed to help me with the graphics for this site and......the Frightfest NW site!! (He did the graphics for the updated Hauntcast site.)

All that and he brought the Miss Rose haunt to the Northwest!! He rocks and yes, he does not know it yet, but he is my new best friend :D

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Not the

best week ever. That is for sure!

The wine auction that I work on is normally a great event that I love being part of - turned out to be a nightmare (on the back end.) On a positive note, we did raise $156,000

Thursday - we downsized at my work and one of my favorite people is no longer my workmate. On a positve note - she no longer has to work with a certian person :)

Sunday - my brother got married. But we are not speaking, so I did not attend. On a positive note - the whole ordeal has given me a great idea for an art project!

Because I am gone for a week - tomorrow will be CRAZY at positve note there :)

Things are looking up....

I am off to Hauntcon on Tuesday, visiting haunted houses and seeing some friends. I could not think of a better way to change perspective. :)

I need

a nap too.

We just got done boxing up our stuff to ship to Hauntcon for our presentation and all the Haunters Video Awards to ship to the winners.

My Dorie cat was helping, as only a cat can do (jumping in an out of all the boxes) - guess it was a too much work for her. She is currently napping.

Check out the Haunters Video Awards website for a picture of the new awards. We got larger bases so that we could fit the plaques on them. I think they look much better.

And the winners are

I found an extra bar of soap so I decided to draw three winners!!


Dixie at Nicholas Manor

Dracaena at Rapid Reflections

Congratulations fellow bloggers. Email your mailing address to and I will get our soaps to you.

That was fun; I will have to find something else to give away.


Friday, April 24, 2009

I have not forgotten

the soap winners. :)

I will draw the names tonight and get you goodies out to you!

But right now, not feeling much like posting anything. This sums up my mood perfectly :)

This is from one of my favorite web comics.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Frog Queen folly #4

This is another (for Chris by Chris - Chris Squared :) Frog Queen folly.

My good friend Toph (the other Chris) and husband made this for me, it is a demon made out of parts from two skeletons (and some great sculpting by Toph.)

There is a how to on our website.

I decided not to hide him away in a corner this year. He is hanging in the window in the upstairs of the shop.
That should keep the thieves out :)

How can anything with wine

be a bad thing. But this year was the worst wine auction experience I have ever had. After the yard haunt, it is the next largest event that I work on each year.

For 8 years I have worked with one of my favorite workmates to host a wine auction for a local children's hospital. It has grown over the years to raise over $220,000 in 2008. It has been copied by other states and has even won awards. (Cause we all know how much I like those :)

We should have know that things were going too smoothly.....something was bound to happen. And it did. Something so small that neither of us could have foreseen happening.

Some generous person tried to do something nice. (My friends, I have living proof that the path to hell is paved with good intentions - I have seen it, I can take you to it right now!) We were happy for a few moments when we thought we had made a lot more money!!

Then, as fast as it appeared and took us awestruck, all sparkly and beautiful, it turned ugly, dropped to the ground and then got kicked around a bit just for fun.

Usually during the live auction we can start telling everyone where we are at and how much we need to beat our rival auction in California.....which we usually do :) That night we could not even get a number by the end of the evening :(

The disaster caused only a momentary delay. But, funny how something so small can cause such havoc. It was terrible. We both managed to keep our cool (mostly) in a very uncomfortable situation, but it really ruined the evening for us. Almost to the point where we were saying we never want to do this again.

Like I say every year, I am glad that that event is over and look forward to next year....but we are now both saying that we don't even want to talk about it for at least a month.
I did get some great wine .....I was just buying it to support the kids :)

So, I guess we are back to Halloween planning!!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Where do you

get those tombstones. . . .or monks or. . . . .?

We get asked that every year, so we have started teaching classes at our house in the summer. Last year we held a couple tombstone classes and they sold out immediately. So this year we are holding four tombstone classes and we are adding a mud man class.

(This is how we help pay for the massive Halloween party we throw each year :)

Truer words

were never spoken.

Because he knows me Toph (the other Chris) sent me a link to this t-shirt the other day. I will be ordering one, and it is currently my wallpaper on my computer at work.


Sunday, April 19, 2009

Yesterday was

beautiful. So I worked in the yard for a bit. And played with our new camera, here are a few pictures of what is blooming in the yard. Not very Halloweenish I know, but this is the ying for my Halloween yang :)

Thursday, April 16, 2009


So each year when we see our Davis Graveyard video, I see many things I want to change. Here is my list for 2009 (so far):

Color (or lack of)
Our main inspiration for the display is the old black and white Universal Monster movies, I am working to create that old movie look in the yard.

The corpses are brown and the yard is black, white and gray. So I am going to repaint them all this summer to match my burning stake skeleton. I am really looking forward to seeing them match the yard.

I will likely paint the talking coachman skeleton gray and black.

I am toying with the idea of replacing the stained glass windows with a black, gray and white version....but that might be a bit too much of a Frog Queen folly. :)

I am still going to ask husband if I can paint the front lawn grey. He will say "no" of course, but I have to ask every is a bit of a tradition with us :)

Time and Place

And, not only did I decide to go with the graveyard theme for the display, I went a step further and decided to make it a old British graveyard. (Image of St. Andrews in Scotland - one of my favorite graveyards to visit.)

In doing this I can keep my thin, tall tombstones, as they are more common in old cemeteries than the thicker more modern tombstones and monuments. So I have had to resist the urge to make many more large square monument type tombstones like I added this year.

Next is the talking head, I love the speech a friend of mine wrote for me, but it is western themed. Very funny and clever, but 2008 was likely his last appearance. (Sorry Dean and Todd.)

We are looking to replace him with a barbershop quartet similar to the Disney Haunted Mansion and in line with the Bates Haunt. Something with a British accent to match the voice the Dick Trehune at Voices from Hell did for our coachman.

So those are the changes, so far...on top of the repairs and new things to make. I feel tired already. :)

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Squeaky clean

or at least that is the idea.

The Oak Hill Bed & Breakfast in Ashland is where Husband and I stay when we are in Ashland for theater and wine. Tom and Pat are lovely hosts and besides fantastic breakfasts, Pat makes great soap.

We asked them to make us custom Davis Graveyard soap for our fundraiser this past Halloween. It is a black soap with gray and red swirls :) Lovely, but I recommend you use it in the shower has that nice brownish blood red color to it that I love...but may not be for everyone :)

The back of the label says "The perfect soap for washing up after burying the bodies or digging up the corpses, whichever was on your to-do list today."

Since I just won something on a blog recently, and I have a few left over.......I decided that I will give away two bars of soap a week from now. One to anyone who is on my followers list and another to anyone that posts in the next week......another one of the Frog Queen follies :)

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

I would like to thank

the academy....I mean the judges. For their volunteer efforts in choosing the 2008 Haunters Video Award Winners.

Check out the website for the winners.

2008 Winners

Best Novice Haunt - Patrick Prue - DHG Cemetery: Deaths Hallowed Grounds
Finalist – Steve & Lisa Toby - Nightmare on Mitchelle Street
Best Party Haunt – Doug & Debbie Lowe - Lowe Manor: The Tomb of Ellery
Finalist – Angie - Dead Spider's Party Canada
Best Indoor Haunt – Noah Fentz - Katzper's Haunt
Finalist – The Baird Family - Baird Manor
Best Yard Haunt – Brent Ross - DC Cemetery
Finalist – Toby Wrolson - Haunt 31

Congratulations to all the winners!

We are thinking of expanding the awards for 2009, if you have suggestions, please let me know, either on this blog or contact us through email. We will be working updating the Awards site later this year with details for 2009 and possibly a way for haunters to leave feedback. (As soon as my web programming skills catch up to my many ideas :)

Thanks to everyone who submitted a video, who donated for the awards, and to Propmaster who without his efforts none of this would be possible.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Yes shadow puppets

can be scary. Very scary to be exact...and beautiful and creepy and funny.

Our friends the Bishop's invited us to come see a "puppet show" with them last night. They sent us a link, and I was immediately intrigued! They are called NightShade. Here is a small sample, these images are nothing short of remarkable.

I was very excited to go, but I have to say that the actual performance was.....amazing. I was literally awestruck when it was done Check out their blog for some more incredible pictures.

It has been a long time since I saw something so inspiring , I wish I had my sketch book so I could grab all the ideas out of my head before I lost them! So as you have guessed, I got a few ideas for props for the yard. :) The angel in the graveyard is now my new mission.

Do yourself a favor, if these very, very talented kids EVER perform in your area. Go see them, don't think twice about it - buy the tickets - you can thank me later :) They sold out all their shows here in Portland in just a few days.

Friday, April 10, 2009

It must be

Easter time. Cause I am surrounded by pastels!! At the day job we have an Easter Egg Hunt for lots of very cute kids. So for me "Easter" starts early, way before Lent!

About two months before Easter, we have to make postcards, little TV productions and posters to announce the event. Then there are the toys, lots and lots of fuzzy pastel colored toys and fluffy bunnies and chicks. It is too much pink and pale blue for my Halloween heart. I go home screaming most nights :)

At the home front, things are a bit different. I know it must be Easter time at the Graveyard because I am out on the patio changing out the red and black candles on the skulls with light pink and yellow and blue :)

Forever in my mind is etched a conversation over the phone with a friend

She asked me "what are you up to?"

"Oh, just changing out the dark candles on the skulls with pastel candles."

She laughs " Of course you are, and you are the only person I know that can say that can say that in a normal conversation."

Why pastel colored candles on the skulls you ask?

To combat the stress caused by all the pastels , I throw my annual "adult" Easter bash. it is all about the pastel colored martini's and Peeps! I find most people will eat anything when they have been drinking.....including Peeps!

And for my friends that read this blog.......there will be the "blue drink"! I might limit it to one per person, even if you have a designated driver. :)

They are cute

when they are sleeping. (Husband and I know this for certain.)

Sleeping is about the only time I could get a witch hat on one of my cats :)

see more Lolcats and funny pictures


more frogs!

I was on the famous Stolloween blog and look what I found!

He always makes the best props, and this one incorporates both my love of Frogs and Halloween!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

How many

is a ridiculous amount of frogs?


This is just a sample of what is in my office at work.

Then there are the ones all over my yard, in the case in upstairs and a few boxes and bags in the basement.

There is even a frog in frog heaven (or where frogs go when they die), because some crazy people decided to get me a live frog as a gift. People, I can't even raise houseplants. If husband did not take care of the cats......yeah, stuffed, plastic, stuffed and ceramic frogs are just fine.

Frog Queen Folly #3

The crew at the Graveyard is a mass of (mostly) obsessive-compulsive, somewhat ADD, good-looking, over-achievers, with way too much time on their hands, and/or the inability to say "no" which is what makes them the perfect minions.

And no, you can't borrow them :)

So when I asked if one of my fabulous friends could make me a guest book for the party. This is what I got.

This hand-made leather book with removable pages, so I can change them out each year and a secret compartment. You know, just something simple that anyone could whip up - right? :)

It sits on an altar on the inside of the church - it looks lovely :)

It currently resides upright on a shelf in my living room, it looks marvelous in candlelight :)

Which are currently Dark Candles Amber Velvet.

I have said it before

I love this site.

Not only do they have GREAT design ideas for graphic artists - and artists in general. The are now featuring:

Bizarre Surreal and Dark Art, right up my alley :) Truly amazing stuff. Take a look - Seriously, what I show is just a small sample, do yourself a favor and check it out.
My fav first :)

Monday, April 6, 2009

Finnaly caught up

on all the Hauntcast episodes. LMAO!!!

The latest one featured one of our favorite haunters, Ghostess Deanna, husband and I have been admiring her yard for years. Her stunning gargoyle prop has been a great inspiration to many people.

We also heard that the Mitchell's are going to be on the next issue, we can hardly wait!! Another amazing yard haunt and very nice people (at least through email :)- I wish my stuff could look that eerie and beautiful. Looking forward to hearing from them.

They take donations, so if you have a few bucks - send it their way - we need to keep them on the web!

It is a great show, and I recommend it to all you haunters. And my crazy friends with a good sense of humor.

Happy Haunting!

Broken Mirror

it is a new scent from Dark Candles. I got one with my last order and it is now one of my favorites. I really hope she includes it in her permanent collection.

She describes it as "Black ginger and bamboo blend together in this scent for a cool, smooth, crisp, clean scent, but with a bit of a sharp zing to its undertone."

It is fabulous!

Friday, April 3, 2009

Uh, no

I can't type the heading I want to type.....husband will kill me. :)

I just had to share that husband has been working on a new 3-axis talking Bucky skull for our seminar at Hauntcon in May. He posted about it on his blog Space Robots.

It is a great improvement over the skull from last Halloween that had, well, let's say, some difficulties :)

It worked part/most of the time. Let's put it this way, if you got to there early, you got to see The Coachman in all it's perfectness.

But by 9:00 p.m. he was not giving it his all, turns out The Coachman was a bit of a diva and did not want to work as hard as the other props. :)Something about one of the controller cards not getting enough power?!

He assures me that this new skull will have no such problems.

I guess I have to say that nothing will motivate husband like knowing that he has to demonstrate how to build a prop in front of 75 or so haunted attraction owners :)

Thursday, April 2, 2009

I guess I was out

of patience. I have had a lot of long work days lately. And they do say you take it out on the ones closest to you. So......

When I come home one day last week husband is dying to tell me that he has been researching promotional items for the Davis Graveyard on Cafe Press and Zazzle. Oh, no, this is sounding way too much like my day job......

My face shows that I am not impressed, and I try real hard not to say what is on my mind. But I fail.

"Why? I order cups and shirts and stuff for our friends. Who, out there would want any Davis Graveyard logo'd happy crap."

(That is, actually, an official marketing term, one I greatly prefer over "swag". Happy crap has a built in sarcasm that suits it perfectly. I have the whole marketing department using that term, much to the dislike of my supervisor :)

"Seriously, honey, if someone wants something, just ask me. I already have it set up with my favorite "happy crap" vendor. I can get just about anything.....for the one person that will actually order."

He looks hurt. Crap - should have been more sensitive. I was not kidding when I said he was the nice one in the relationship.

"Okay, honey, tell what you found out." He proceeds to tell me the pro and cons of each site (in my head I am focusing on the cons) and asks me which one we should use.

I know I am supposed to care and say something that makes it look like I am really interested all the information he just gave me.

Instead I say - "Zazzle does printing on the back of the shirts right? We both like that and the other ones do not. Right?" He say "yeah"
"Done - go with Zazzle"

"But...what about......"

"No seriously, I am done. Go ahead, sign us up for Zazzle."

Yikes, that sounded harsh.

I then got to thinking, and that made it worse.

"So explain to me why this "store" is okay, but on our FAQs " (we put them in a mud man out in the yard in October. They are a have no idea how many times I have been asked if the tombstones are real) "you are dying for me to take off the line about how we would sell props, just contact us for next year."

As soon as I said it I think even the voices in my head gasped! So very quickly I say...

"I know, not the same thing, go ahead and set up whatever you like, just let people know that we are not making money on this and don't make our friends feel like they have to buy this stuff to support our Graveyard. "

We agree.

So, now on the Davis Graveyard products page we have a link to our Zazzle page, as well as our My Publisher books (cool but expensive) and our DVDs.

The first day it was up....we got two orders.

The Frog Queen is wrong again :)

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Husband is

EVIL (pure evil -just like Orange and Black mentioned)

Look at the April Fool's Day card he sent me. I was all ready to "save YoYo".....and then.....I almost wet myself.....and the Banshee had the nerve to call it cute....they are all out to get me :)

Bigger is better part II

Yes, we decided that the Haunters Video Awards need larger bases and we ordered them. We have been waiting for Micheal from Ghost Ride to get back from the convention in St. Louis, so he could ship them out.

We have almost all the votes in, so when we get the bases for the awards we will announce the winners on the Haunters Video Awards site. We also have a special award for this year, so keep checking the site next week for more details.

Thanks to all the judges and everyone who donated. We appreciate all the support to keep the awards going.

About due

for another LOLcat. One of my favorite Twilight episodes. Still think of this every time I get on a plane :)

funny pictures of cats with captions
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