I'm so thankful that my dear sis Bag #1, has been on hand to keep things rollin' along here during my absence. I'd been busily getting our property and house ready for a very important event that all our friends have been awaiting all year long - dubbed "Doc Satan's Halloween Hoedown" in honor of our dear friend, John (that's him in the lower photo with me, grinning madly as he clutches his skull beer mug!). John usually hosts the Halloween Hoedown at his home (which is known as the "First Church of Halloween" because it is gloriously decorated from floor to ceiling with all manner of Halloween decor) but was unable to this year due to prior commitments (he was directing a play in Nashville all September and October).
We had close to 75 people attend! Wow, a success beyond my wildest dreams. But oy, what a lot of work it was - my back is still aching, yet it was well worth it. It was great to put a fresh coat of paint in the kitchen and totally "Autumnize" it!
As you came up to the property, a bloody "Welcome!" sign with a skeletal arm foretold the event; with bales of hay, pumpkins, skulls, and gravestones lining the way and dotting the landscape here and there.
At the top of our parking platform stood a 10-foot tall character we dubbed "Jack Effigy," created from two old wooden ladders, a flowing section of ragged muslin cloth, two very craggly branches for arms, and a huge carved Jack O'Lantern looming as his head. With his outstretched arms, he welcomed the partygoers to come inside and join the revelry.
We decorated our old barn with festive Jack O'Lanterns and a really cool sound/motion activated ghost that flew past the upper loft windows moaning "OooOoOoo!" The front porch featured amazing full-sized handiwork by local artist Ethan Black, including the "Slasher Bride" and "The Mummy." Everywhere inside our home you'd find Halloween decorations; from our "Old Croney Mama" who lustily screeched as she stirred a giant cauldron, to the vintage art, posters, and collectibles which stretched from the front dining room to the candy-corn colored kitchen, all the way down the purple hallway (lit with eery black lights) to the Pirate's Den sitting area and beyond into the Library and my neon-green Art Studio.
My husband Mark created a super-cool fog machine that emitted a thick, atmospheric layer of fog which crept close to the ground and blanketed a good portion of the acreage in the back yard. Think of all the horror movies you've seen where the fog creeps eerily along the ground and you get the idea. We also created a section of "Haunted Woods" for anyone brave enough to walk through, complete with scary sounds!
Nearby, at the rustic "Stump Henge" area encircling our ancient apple tree, we had a traditional Ofrenda, a table set out to honor those who have since passed on. Anyone was welcome to come light a candle to honor a loved one here.
There was food, drink, and lots of live music by two very phenomenal local Nashville bands: The Secret Commonwealth, who play awesome, soul-stirring Celtic songs of love, war, booze and death. The other band, The Exotic Ones, espouse the very best of 1960's "surfabilly rock." Think of Dick Dale's surf rock and cross it with The Cramps and you get the idea!
I even revved up my old tractor and took a few brave souls on a demented ride around our property in the hot pink lawn cart, cackling madly in the brisk, starry night air along the twists and turns!
We had two roaring bonfires, roasted weenies and marshmallows, danced and sang and laughed and rocked and even got in a showing of the perennial Halloween favorite, "Mad Monster Party" to boot. By the time the party came to an end at around 1:30am, we were tired and partied-out, but thoroughly thrilled to have had such a rip-roaring good time.
Next year, same time, same place. See you there, dearies!