To Know-It-All’s Everywhere:

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You know everything already, so you must know who you are.

On second thought, I’d wager that you probably don’t.

I’m referring to you, the one standing in my personal space informing me how I should be performing the task that I’m currently involved in because you happened along while I was doing it. As you frequently reiterate that you’re ‘oh-so-qualified’ to do so because you spent 3 years working at some place that makes you an expert, you don’t seem to notice my blank stare and occasional “mmm hmm’s”, thus signifying that I mentally zoned out somewhere after “You know, you should…”

That’s called unsolicited advice, and short of stamping “no solicitation” across my forehead, I don’t know of a way to make it clear that my knowledge reserve doesn’t need your 2 added cents unless I come right out and tell you. Then, I run the risk of being just as rude as you often are, so my best course of action seems to be avoidance of you altogether. Something tells me you wouldn’t get the hint then, either.

Still don’t know who you are? Okay Let me provide another example for you.

You’re the one that always has to meet an exciting tale of someone else’s with one of your own. Instead of just smiling and asking interested questions of the story teller, the first words out of your mouth after the conclusion of their amusing anecdote or harrowing tale are something along the lines of, “That’s nothing. There was this one time I…” or, “Oh, I’ve done that before…”

Congratulations. Your need to seek attention just made you a terrible friend. If, in fact, there are people out there that even consider you their friend.

Look around you. Do you see a plethora of people rushing to hang out with you, or is your dog the only one that willingly comes within 5 feet of you? Do you wave at an acquaintance from across the grocery store only to watch them promptly turn and walk in the opposite direction and pretend not to notice you? Do people almost never return your phone calls unless it’s work related?

Take a quick whiff of your armpits. Don’t look at me like that, just do it. Still fresh as a daisy?

Unless you curled your nose up in disgust, I doubt foul body odor is the problem here.

I hate to break it to you smarty pants, but you are likely a prime example of a Know-It-All.

Don’t worry, though, I’m here to help.

Here’s my unsolicited advice to you, Advice Guru:

Zip it.

Even if you’ve been there and done that, as always seems to be the case, try not to offer a solution if a solution isn’t needed. Assess the situation. Is the person doing just fine on their own without your advice, even if they aren’t doing something the way that you normally would? If so, then leave them to it and just stay out of their way.

Offer your advice if, and only if – you see them struggling, or if they come right out and ask. Even when they are struggling and could use some help, give some thought to the way you’re approaching a person when you give your advice. Never offer your advice in an attacking or accusing manner. Responses like, “If you would have just done it like this…” or “No, no, no. Not like that…” aren’t going to win anyone over. You’re only succeeding in making the other person look stupid.

Try something more along the lines of “Those things can be really difficult. Mind if I show you a trick I learned that might help?” If you make it seem like you’re genuinely showing interest in or concern for a person rather than simply trying to show them up with some vast knowledge that you think you have, people will start to welcome your presence instead of avoid you.

Next…

Learn to be a good listener.

Everyone wants their moment in the spotlight. It’s human nature. However when you’re the one trying to steal everyone else’s act, nobody is going to want you in their show. Be, or at least pretend to be, interested in what someone else has to say for a change. Ask questions. Respond with things like, “Wow, that’s amazing!” or, “How funny that that actually happened!” Then when you feel the need to chime in with a story about something similar that happened to you, bite your tongue. Let them have their moment. It isn’t always about you.

If you simply can’t bite your tongue, at least hold it for a minute. Share a good laugh with them over their funny story, or give a consoling hug if it’s a sad tale. Pat someone on the back for encouragement and tell them they did the right thing, or tell them that you feel for their difficult situation. Whatever the case, don’t be quick to rush in and make their moment about you. Consider the timing. Offer your own tale of similar humor or difficulty once the other person has had the chance to fully discuss their own situation first.

Then…

Ask yourself what your intentions are.

Are you genuinely trying to be helpful, or are you just full of yourself? Are you merely seeking the attention that interjecting at that particular moment is going to bring you? Do you care about other people and what they have to say, or do you only care about your own point of view? Do you think that there might be more than one way to accomplish something, or is your way the only way? Will any harm come from not correcting someone? Are you just looking to start and argument? Show off?

Whatever the case may be, sometimes its best not to say anything at all if you run the risk of coming across as a complete know-it-all.

Silence may be golden…

Recognizing when to be silent is priceless.

 

 

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The 12 Year Honeymoon

Daily Prompt: First Sight

Whether a person, a pet, an object, or a place, write about something or someone you connected with from the very first second.

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I had never been one for long term relationships. I would make excuses for myself and place the blame solely on whatever guy unwittingly had one foot out the door at the time (even though at times it genuinely was a wise decision to move on), but in retrospect I can chalk it up to mostly my own selfishness. I had developed a “grass is greener” mentality, and when the butterflies in the stomach were gone, the guy that wrought them was soon to follow.

I went through a plethora of “relationships” in my younger years, with my 2 longest being 3 years and 5 years respectively, and even those were on and off at times.

I would dump a guy for the most absurd things, too. This one because he had too much nose hair, that one because I didn’t like the way he laughed, another one because he’d hold his fork like a 2 year old at the dinner table.

Yep, just give me a willing heart, and I could break it into a million pieces in the most creative ways.

I had developed an unhealthy relationship pattern, and I honestly didn’t even recognize that I had a problem at the time. I mean, society had made this type of behavior perfectly acceptable, how could I possibly see that it wasn’t right?

So on I went, hacking away with my relationship machete, oblivious to the  wake of destruction I left behind…

Until HIM.

It started innocently enough, with a “Happy Birthday” from a distance of 1200 miles via the online game we both played. If I think about it now, I was probably hooked from just those 2 words.

Over the next few weeks, more words were to follow in the form of lengthy conversations long into the night. We discussed hopes and dreams, wishes and desires. We got to know each other on an emotional level, without that pesky physical attraction business getting in the way.

We exchanged pictures after a time of course, and neither of us were disappointed. Exchanging pictures led to phone numbers, and after several lengthy phone calls (accompanied by astronomical phone bills), we were making plans to meet in person. He bought a plane ticket to Michigan to come see me, and I counted the days until I would see him with bated breath and nervous anticipation.

When he walked down the gangway and into my waiting embrace, the sparks were instant. I mean sure, we had connected on an emotional level already, but this…this was chemistry.

He told me later that his very first thought when he saw me was, “I’m going to marry that girl”, and I can’t say that I wasn’t thinking much the same. Love at first sight was always a trite and ridiculous concept to me, but there I was, with stars in my eyes, feeling like my heart would explode out of my chest.

As he walked me to my car, he held me close, placing a string of soft little kisses along my fingertips and up my arm to the tune of me giggling like a schoolgirl. This guy…oh…this guy.

Our first weekend together was magical, and our first kiss was off the charts. He had spent the day teasing me…getting close enough to move in for a kiss, making me think it would finally happen, and then he would quickly back away, leaving me breathless, confused, and still longing for our lips to finally meet.

He waited until a time when I was least expecting it. I had just stepped out the door when he turned me to face him, and the passionate connection that ensued left me with wobbly knees and rendered me speechless for some time to follow. I couldn’t even rate that kiss. On a scale of 1 to 10, that kiss was somewhere in the 50’s.

He was no sooner on his flight home than I was planning a trip down to Florida to see him the following month. Another amazing weekend was spent together, and that was all we needed to be sure. Truth be told, we were both sure even before that second visit.

I flew back home, found the perfect wedding dress, and 4 months after the words ‘happy birthday’ flowed in bright green letters across my computer screen, my hair was tressed up in flowers and curls, and I was shivering in chiffon while making a promise to love that man for life on a Florida beach in the nippy January air.

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Our ‘love at first sight’ is now going on year 12.

I still look at him sometimes and wonder how I got lucky enough to win over this beautiful man. We drive our kids crazy with our frequent smooches and love affirmations. “Get a room”, my son will say. I’ll retort with, “Got one already.” Then they’ll roll their eyes and groan. My husband and I will just look at each other and smile.

Sure we’ve had our ups and downs. We’ve wanted to kill each other at times, and we’ve wanted to kill for each other at times.

We are each other’s world, though, and we wouldn’t trade that…

For the world.

Commitment to Crazy

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As I stood in the kitchen last week, watching my 12 year old son bawl his eyes out because, and I quote, “Jonathan says he rubbed his nuts all over my food when I wasn’t looking and now I’m too paranoid to eat it,” I thought to myself, “Self, why don’t you write anymore? It’s not like your life is any less entertaining and chaotic than it used to be. I mean…a houseful of teenagers, a husband that sometimes behaves like an overgrown teenager himself, world’s worst excuse for a pet rabbit, a half crazed lizard that thinks she’s a dog…it all screams blog fodder to me.” Besides, my one and a half adoring fans are probably wondering where I’ve gotten off to.

So, here it is. My commitment to try. To once again grace the world with my quick wit, humor, and wisdom. (It’s been a long week, just let me have that one, okay?) To boldly go where at least 85% of all other bloggers have probably gone before. To don my shiny red cape of awesomeness and fight the never ending battle for truth, justice, and the American way. Oh. Wait. That’s Superman. Got a little ahead of myself there. Can’t help it, though, I’m excited.

Now, my posts won’t always be humorous. Sometimes my life can be downright sad. Keep tissues handy just in case.

Sometimes I’ll be in a thoughtful mood, or perhaps I’ll want to just hop up on my soapbox and rant and rave about the injustices of the world.

Whatever the topic may be, I’ll do my best to at least make it worth reading. That’s a promise. It may not be every day, but it will be more often than every 6 months. Deal?

So, on that note, lets all have a group hug. (ooof) Okay, not that hard. And don’t touch me there. Buncha animals.

It’s good to be back. Stay tuned for forthcoming insanity.

Disclaimer: no rabbits, lizards, husbands, or teenagers were harmed in the making of this post.

 

Down the Rabbit Hole of Depression

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Yes, I fell off the face of the earth.

In much the same way that Alice fell down the rabbit hole into Wonderland, or Dorothy was swept up by the twister and deposited in Oz, I was whisked away…no…more like drop-kicked…into a land that only exists somewhere in the far reaches of my reality beaten mind, but isn’t nearly as glamorous as the afore-mentioned tales.

I got lost there; or comfortable there, depending on how you look at things, and I’m still there now; searching for a way back home.

Or not.

I don’t know that I’m ready to come back just yet.

It all started immediately after a nice vacation at sea; four days of fun in the sun with my husband, best friend, and other friends and acquaintances. I ate delicious food, sipped fruity things with little umbrellas, watched people go by from all circles of life, and took part in an assortment of entertaining activities. It was a truly magical experience. Like all vacations, though, it had to come to an end.

An ending is one thing, though. An abrupt and painful ending is another thing entirely. I was no sooner getting my land legs again when I found myself unexpectedly facing my demons. I wasn’t ready to face them yet. My mind was still somewhere at sea.

I was first asked not to write about certain people or past events. I considered this and surmised that it rather defeated the purpose of my writing to begin with since the things I write about are therapeutic to me. Sort of a shared diary of whatever is on my mind or heart. I share to let go. I let it out so it’s not IN anymore. I put fingers to keyboard and emotionally flow. If it pains me, aggravates me, makes me smile, or makes me laugh, I share it with others in the hopes that someone else can relate.

Then I was called onto the carpet and made to think twice about things that I had previously written. I came under fire for my OCD and the way that it affects my family. Truth be told, I hadn’t even brought my OCD with me on vacation…I had left it at home. Imagine my surprise when I found out it had followed me.

I felt like a horrible person for days after being forced to face the things I do and the way that I am. For the first time in years, I honestly wanted to die. I thought that, in my inability to “just shut it off” when others expected me to, I’d be better off if I took myself out of everyone else’s misery. Willing death is a far cry from follow-through, though, and I’m simply not capable of commitment to such finality. In reality I like certain aspects of life, even as screwed up as I am.

So, I simply shut down.

After crying all the way back home, I walked into the house with my shoes on (gasp), dropped my bags, crawled into bed, and stayed there for 3 days. I didn’t unpack, didn’t clean up after anyone, didn’t care.

Or tried not to care. Tried really hard not to care.

I thought, “If everyone wants to do whatever they want and have me not care, fine, but I can’t watch it happen.” So I stayed in bed, miserably tucked away from anything and everything that would send me into an anxiety fueled tail-spin.

Until 2 things happened.

First of all, it all got the better of me. I had to get up and clean up because I just couldn’t take it anymore. Three days is apparently my limit when it comes to what my OCD can and can’t handle.

Secondly, I thought about what I am.

I…am a human being. I am who I am. I’m in no way, shape or form perfect by any stretch of the imagination. I have hang-ups, issues, eccentricities, emotional baggage, and mental problems.

But you know what? So does everyone else. Try and show me someone that doesn’t, and I’ll direct you to the word falsehood in the dictionary.

So I got up, brushed myself off, and tried to throw myself back into life again.

Tried.

Something had changed, though. Several somethings, actually.

I had completely lost my desire to write for one thing. I still wouldn’t consider this a triumphant return. It’s more like an explanation, and writing this now is not without a certain degree of struggle. The passion and fire that I had for writing before have now been redirected into other past times; legal of course, but perhaps not entirely unsinful depending on how you view video games.

I also lost my desire to work. Maybe that isn’t all that unusual, not many people actually want to go to work. It’s just exceptionally more difficult for me now than it was before.

I don’t want to be around people, either. I’ve become anti-social. I find it easier and more enjoyable to be alone with the exception of my immediate family (at times) than I do to be among friends.

I suppose you could call the land that I’m currently lost in ‘Depression’…or ‘Selfishness’; likely a combination of both.

And there you have it.

While I may not be ready to come back yet, don’t write me off completely. Consider my absence as a hiatus until I find my way back to reality…

Which, with any luck, will be soon.

Sister Stockholm Syndrome

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My poor son just happens to be cursed.

The boy has been afflicted with 3 older sisters.

Well, one actual birth sister and 2 step-sisters, but in our house, a sister is a sister. Titles aside, they all torment just the same.

He has a step-brother, too, who sometimes crosses the line from simple sibling aggravation into straight up bullying. We put a stop to it when we know about it, but under threats of further torment, my son will opt to keep silent most of the time.

My husband has theorized, however, that some sibling oppression is good for the boy. Character building, in fact. So, he’ll often respond to my distress over any given situation with, “Well, my brother tortured me as a kid. I turned out just fine and still love him very much. Besides, he needs to toughen up a little.”

I just huff exasperatedly and shake my head at him.

We will probably never see eye to eye on the subject, but hey, I’m an only child so my views are naturally going to be different.

Anyway, I believe that the boy has weighed his options and realized that sister torture is marginally less painful than brother torture, so he’s decided to let the sisters do to him what they will and go with the flow.

I think he was conditioned by the girls at a young age when they made the assessment that he was a living doll put on this earth strictly for their personal entertainment, and would put him in dresses, complete with hair accessories and jewelry to match.

I would peek in on them to find them all staring up at me; the girls with big cheeky grins, and the boy in full female regalia with a defeated look on his face.

Over the years he’s been dressed up, made up, had his eyebrows plucked, his hair sculpted, his nails painted, and countless other atrocities committed against him compliments of his sisters.

When I would find him in such predicaments, I would go and get my camera to the tune of his screaming admonitions, “NOOOOO, MOMMY!! NOT FACEBOOK! YOU CAN’T PUT ME ON FACEBOOK!!!”

After a while, though, he gave up when he learned that Facebook was an inevitable fate.

Now he doesn’t even try. He has adopted a “just do to me what you will” attitude with his sisters, and even plays into their little brother bothering games with enthusiasm most of the time.

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This could mean one of 2 things. Either he’s been tormented by his sisters so much that he honestly genuinely enjoys it now, or it just proves how smart the boy is, because he knows that if he’s not acting like their antics annoy him, they’ll give up on him out of boredom.

If the former is the case, I see therapy in the boy’s future.

If the latter is the case, then…

Well played son, well played.

Unconventional Canines

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I’ve always been a dog lover and even used to want one of my own.

I’ve filed that idea away for the time being, though.

My husband had said no to a dog for many years because of his allergies. Then one day, out of the blue he agreed that I could finally get the Dachshund that I had always been begging him for, as long as he didn’t have to walk it or clean up after it. I said, “What about your allergies?” To which he replied, “Benadryl.”

So, I had immersed myself in a search for a canine companion. I had been searching rescue websites and asking around for about a week, when 2 things happened.

First of all, Ray happened. Ray Darr. The rabbit that, I have surmised, was probably found abandoned because Satan had thrown the hairy little troublemaker out of hell. My husband declared that if Ray stayed, the idea of getting a dog was out.

Then my step daughter’s dog Athena came to spend a night at our house.

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When I stuck my head into the girls’ room that night, the smell of dog was so overwhelming that my anxiety went through the roof. That’s when I realized that while I may have made great strides of improvement in the OCD department, my issues still weren’t ready to face dog ownership.

I was rather saddened by this until my daughter pointed out that we do, in fact, have dogs. Two of them. They just don’t bark or need to be taken outside regularly like your customary canines, which makes them that much better.

You see, Ray Darr thinks he’s a dog.

He digs holes:

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Yeah, don’t try to look innocent.

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He goes for rides:

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He gives kisses:

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He has his own harness and leash so we can take him for walks, where he knocks people down and jumps on them:

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Then, if he doesn’t claw the flesh right off your legs begging when he knows you have food of any kind, he just plain steals it:

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So you see he’s not really a rabbit, he’s just a rabbit-shaped dog.

And then there’s Lizzie:

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Now, don’t let her lack of fur fool you. She’s just your average pooch in so many ways.

She’ll flop down on top of her house for afternoon naps:

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She’ll lie in awkward positions:

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She’ll climb on top of things that she shouldn’t:

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(I guess the secret’s out. Now you know who writes most of my blog posts.)

She’ll knock stuff over and then look guilty:

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You can put food on top of her head and command her to stay:

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And she begs, too. Her tank sits near our dining room table, and at dinner time, she’ll rush over to the corner, mash her little face up against the glass, and start clawing until we notice her.

Then, either me or my bleeding heart, animal junkie daughter or will get her out and let her join us for dinner:

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Yep, that’s the dinner scene most nights at our house.

She’ll eat pretty much anything, too, because she’s just a dog in a lizard suit.

So I guess, in reality, I am a dog owner.

No matter how unconventional my canines happen to be.

Halloweening on a Budget

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Well folks, it’s almost that time of year again.

That time of year when our kids beg us for expensive costumes that they’re only going to wear for about 2 hours, while they go door to door begging for candy like a band of street urchins.

Now, the candy part I like. If I don’t send them out begging for candy, how else am I going to steal all of the good stuff like Kit Kats and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups and leave them with junk like Necco Wafers and that nasty chewy peanut butter taffy? (Seriously people, stop even buying those things, they just end up in the garbage or at the end of some kid’s slingshot.)

It’s just the buying costumes part that tries to throw a monkey wrench into my devious, candy thieving plan. We haven’t been able to afford a store-bought costume in years, because we just happen to be certifiably, duct-tape-your-shoes, Ramen-five-nights-a-week, wear-your-undies-until-there’s-more-holes-than-actual-fabric poor. So, we’ve just managed to make do with what we have.

We’re so poor, in fact, that one year we cut some arm and leg holes into a trash bag, stuck some wadded up paper and wrappers to my son’s head, and took him to an upscale neighborhood, (you know, the kind where they give out candy that didn’t come from the dollar store) where he went door to door proudly proclaiming, “I’m poor white trash.”

Don’t judge. It worked. Not only did the kid win a costume contest that year, but he even got double the candy out of sympathy, and it only cost us a trash bag.

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So, lack of funding during this time of year has forced us to get quite imaginative when it comes to costume creating. Call it Halloweening on a budget. We make it work, though.

I thought I’d highlight a few of my favorite past costume creations for you; my adoring one and a half fans. In honor of the upcoming festivities.

May you be inspired.

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Let’s start with this work of art that we like to call “Stepped in Bubble Gum.” This one happens to be one of my all time favorites. It was cheap, easy, and won him another costume contest. One of his sisters had the pink shirt and pants already, and I drew tire tracks and footprints on them with a sharpie. We found the pink hat at the thrift store, and I sewed one of my old shoes to the top of it. Voila! The kid was transformed into a wad of ABC bubble gum. (That’s “already been chewed” for those who aren’t in the know.)

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We all know that money doesn’t grow on trees, but sometimes it does for Halloween!

I had alot of fun with this one. The fake foliage, headband, and play money all came from the dollar store. I got a pack of brown pipe cleaners from Wal-mart to twist into little branches, and we found the brown gloves at the thrift store. I sewed some of the leaves and money onto the finger tips of the gloves, attached the remaining leaves and money to the ends of the pipe cleaners, wound them around the headband to look like branches, and sewed a couple of the makeshift branches onto the shoulders of the shirt. I even found a rubber dragonfly hiding out in my bins of craft supplies, and sewed it to the front  of the shirt. All in all, we spent about 6 bucks to make this costume.

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This costume didn’t cost us a dime. She was going through a goth phase so she already had most of this stuff in her closet  anyway. She threw together a few of her items to make a dark fairy costume, and the wings just happened to be hand-me-downs that I found stuffed in the back of my closet from some Halloween years ago:

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I pieced that together, too, but don’t ask me what I was. No clue.

Oh, and by the way:

Tree hugging fairy!!!

Sorry, just had to throw that in there.

Moving right along:

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The Low Budget Ninja.

Michelle Phan (love her) has this awesome little YouTube video called “Be a Ninja In 30 Seconds…I Think“. She basically teaches you how to take a black t-shirt and turn it into an instant ninja mask. That’s what we did for this costume, and then we just went through closets until we found some black garb to complete the ensemble. He had the weapons already because, well…he’s a boy. Grand total spent on this costume: nothing.

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Uh oh. Looks like Mr. Ninja stepped in some gum.

Anyway…

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Who doesn’t love a zombie girl, especially when she’s eating her daddy’s brain? This corpsie cutie made her costume herself. She cut up a shirt and some jeans to look like they had slash marks, added some fake blood and face make up, and her undead look had suddenly come alive. This costume only cost a few bucks for a tube of fake blood and some face paint.

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The following year my daughter was going through an “Everything Batman” phase and decided that she wanted to be Batgirl. So, I got this little slip-type skirt that I cut up from the Salvation Army store for a buck along with the shirt which was 3 dollars. I got the fabric for 5 dollars at hobby lobby, cut out the wings, and sewed them along the side seams of the shirt. I then sewed the tips of the wings to a couple of her rings so that she wouldn’t have to hold them.  We found the mask for a couple of bucks at a Halloween store. She already had the belt which was a gift from her dad I think, and the boots were borrowed. We probably invested about 12 dollars total into making this costume, which is pretty good considering the fact that when we looked at Batgirl costumes in the store, they were 40-50 dollars! Yikes!

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What good is a superhero without her trusty sidekick?

I had found this plain green shirt and little red slip-skirt at the Salvation Army store for a few dollars as well. I cut up the skirt to match her batty counterpart’s ensemble. I bought some t-shirt paint at Hobby Lobby for 4 bucks and painted the Robin symbol on the front of her shirt. I then found some red, green, and yellow fabric pieces in the craft section of the thrift store that I used to manage. I used them to make the cape that I sewed onto the shoulder seams of her shirt, and also her green armbands, and her belt. The mask was a couple of dollars at Walmart, and she already had the boots. The total spent on this costume was around 10 dollars.

Off to fight some crime, ladies?

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Go get those candy bandits!

Alrighty then.

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Mr. Gangster here was a last minute throw together costume because we really had no other ideas. The pinstripe suit was given to him by some friends of ours, and I used an eyebrow pencil to draw on a snazzy little beard. Don’t worry son, you’ll be growing facial hair of your own soon enough.

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Last year my daughter opted for a mother nature look. I’d say we only put about 5 dollars into creating this costume with the purchase of the make-up. I used an eyebrow pencil, metallic gold eye shadow, and metallic green eyeliner to paint the design on her face. A friend had given her the fake fall leaves that she used to weave into her corded belt and make into a circlet for her head. The shirt and cover-up she already had, and the skirt was a part of my old renaissance costume:

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Uh…yeah. Old school.

And then there was Juliet:

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Okay. I’m no great seamstress, but with the added help of a plain white skirt and some gold-trimmed pink velvet ribbon, I managed to recycle an old church choir robe into a work of art. I accented the ensemble with a teardrop shaped pearl bead tied to a piece of gold ribbon to adorn her forehead. All of the items for this costume were found in the thrift store that I used to manage, so the only thing it cost me to make this costume was time.

Now, these last few low budget costumes weren’t necessarily for Halloween, but I’ll throw them in with the mix anyway because they were just so much fun to create:

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Even better than the Von Trapp family is…well…mine.

You see, we had this “World Nations” dinner at church and we were supposed to dress up in a costume that represented a country of our choosing. Since I’m of German decent, I naturally chose to piece together a few German costumes for the fam. All of the clothing and fabric that I used for these costumes I found in the thrift store. I sewed their cute little hats out of felt pieces and ribbon. I dissected an old fashioned ruffled shirt and added the sleeves to my vest and some of the lace to my step-daughter’s shirt. We found some plain white skirts that fit and used some gold cloth place mats as aprons. I made the suspender pieces out of fabric and wide ribbon and sewed them to pairs of shorts that we already had to make Lederhosen.  Ja!

And there you have it folks!

This year we’re working on an awesome Alice costume for my daughter. My son is going to be the Mad Hatter, and Ray Darr, the worlds worst excuse for a pet rabbit is going to be the March Hare.

Stay tuned for those pics. It’s going to be fabulous!