Wednesday, October 31, 2012

How to make a Bowser costume

 Cai wanted to be Bowser for Halloween this year. I looked up some ideas on google but mostly decided to do it myself. Fair warning right now you need lots of toilet paper tubes. :)

Supplies: (I think I listed them all)
thick cardboard -big enough to make a shell for your back
thin cardboard (think cereal box)
15 empty toilet paper tubes (or 9 paper towel rolls cut in half)
Yellow felt
Green hat (I used fleece)
White duck tape
Red feathers
pair of old socks (preferably white)
white, green and yellow pant
scotch tape
Hot glue and glue gun
needle and thread- either yellow or white

 Take your big piece of cardboard and draw your shell shape- big oval that will fit your kid's (or your own) back. Cut out shape. At this time I also drew marks as to where my spikes would go. I placed 10 spikes on the shell. I suppose you could add more or less.
 Make you spikes. I took my toilet paper tubs and cut three triangles into the top. Then I used scotch tape to take them together to make the point. At the bottom I cut slits to allow me to glue the bottom to the shell.
 Hot glue all your spikes onto your shell.
 Cut the elastic to the size you'll need to go around your shoulders. I poked holes into my shell and threaded the elastic though the shell and tied the ends together to make one big loop. Then I hot glued this down to the shell under spikes. I felt this make the elastic more secure. I'm sure you could just hot glue it to the back if you want.
 At this point I used white spray paint to cover the whole shell. It did not coat the spikes very well. I ended up going back over all the spikes with white acrylic paint. The boys helped me with this part and the green paint as well.
 Use your green paint for the shell. I had to use two coats. Then I used yellow acrylic paint around the base of each spike. The yellow band is probably about 1/2 inch.

To finish I added white felt around the edges. You could just paint a white boarder around the edge and have similar results.
 For the horns on the hat I used thin cardboard (an old coca cola box), toilet paper tubs scotch tape and a pair of old socks.
 I cut out the shape of the horn on the cardboard. Taped this together at the narrow end. Then taped the tube in between to give it a 3D shape.
 I slipped a sock onto each horn to help give it shape and have something to wrap my tape around. I then used white duck tape to cover the horns completely.
 For my hat I cut holes into the side of my fleece hat. I liked the fleece because it didn't fray when I cut into it. I slipped my horn into place and hot glued down. You could add yellow band with pain at the end of the horns to make them looks like the spike on the shell. I didn't bother though.
Mark was my model :)
Taking my hot glue gun I glued down the feathers over the eyes for eyebrows and along the top and over the back. I looked at images on google to give me an idea of how Bowsers head looks. He has a sorta red mohawk going on. So I tried to recreate that. 
For his tail, I first made three more spikes just like I did for the shell. I then took my yellow felt and folded so that it created a triangle. Using some thread I hand stitched it together. I then made three cuts where I wanted my spikes to be and pushed them through the inside out. I hot glued them in place. Rather than attempting to figure out how to attach the tail to his pants, I hot glued the tail to the shell. Making the shell and tail all one piece. Hot Glue is my friend. Really!!!

Viola! You now have a shell, tail and hat for Bowser. Wear yellow top and bottoms. Add spike bracelets and you're done. I found black spiked slap bracelets at Dollar Tree. Other idea I saw in my searching online where the metal and leather ones. I couldn't find any when I was looking. To be really authentic you would need bracelets at the wrists, around your biceps and then a spiked choker around the neck. We only had the two so around the wrists/forearms worked for us. :)  I'm pretty proud of this costume. Hope you enjoy it as much as us!!!

Trick or Treat

Happy Halloween! Since about 2:15pm this afternoon our life has been nonstop. Aiden, Cai and I got dressed in our costumes (with lots of layers underneath to try and keep warm) and went to pick up Ian at school by 3. We stopped at Mark's office. Ian changed. I came up with a paper mustache since the felt one seemed to disappear. We then said goodbye to Dad and headed out to main street for trick or treating downtown.
Bowser, Waluigi, and Wario from Nintendo
 The boys had a great time. It was crowded and crazy. We did run into Ian's teacher and a few friends. I heard a few kids say "Hey that's Bowser." Feeling pretty good about that.
Check out his spikes!
 Poor Ian and Aiden got mistaken for Luigi. It frustrated Ian, but he was usually too shy to correct people. Aiden got lots of comments on his mustache. He does look mighty adorable.
growling faces
 In addition to lots of candy, the boys got cars at one store and a book at the bookstore. And I got a complement on my TARDIS dress by someone who recognized who I was. Made my day. I'm still smiling thinking of it.
The black spikes are a slap bracelet which Cai loved
After we decided we had had enough cold and wet, we headed back up to Dad's office to enjoy a couple of pieces of candy and check in.The hurricane is causing all sorts of work for Mark, so he was crazy busy. We quickly said goodbye again and headed to Aunt Rachel's.
The wind made keeping the had on hard
 Had a quick dinner (peanut butter or soynut butter tortillas with honey) and then headed out to trick or treat with the cousins. Josiah's cheetah costume is awesome. All the boys seem to be obsessed with Cheetah Power off of Wild Krats (PBS kids). It's mostly cute. Although there are afternoons here at home I"m ready to ban the words. In door races can only be handled for so long.
Four out of Five boys- the youngest didn't want to walk
 While it was cold this afternoon, the temp dropped after 5pm. It was freezing by the time we called it a night at about 6pm. I'm not sure how the boys handled it. But they had a great time. We adults couldn't walk fast enough and spent most of the evening tell them to wait up or just yelling STOP! Sigh.
For about two blocks they all held hands while walking/skipping down the sidewalk
 After warming up for a bit at Rach's, we went on to a Halloween party at her high school friends house.  Mark was able to join for the party and help me get boys to bed. Now he is back to work. :( All and all it was a good Halloween. Now if only I could warm up.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Menu Plan Monday- Oct 29th, 2012

You got a post yesterday. Just saying. Even if it wasn't a menu. I had no idea what I wanted to cook yesterday. In fact my meal for last night got changed at the last minute when I found out I was out of soy sauce. :( In the world of cooking, my life has been crazy. Seeing as I haven't posted in week, I have not had a menu plan for almost as long. Some weeks I would think ahead as to what I could make the next day or two, but last week especially it was a day to day decision. Not helpful to my sanity. This week I'm making sure to plan meals out. Life goes more smoothly when I do. :) So here it is. This weeks menu.

Monday: Cheese Corn Chowder (cause it only takes about 20 minutes to make - found in More with Less Cookbook)
Tuesday: Spaghetti Squash with tomato sauce. Peas.
Wednesday: Chili Party at friends house before trick or treating
Thursday: Pumpkin and Pistachio Risotto (from Cooking with Beans, Grains, Pulses and Legumes)
Friday: First Friday- eat downtown
Saturday:  Kale and Tomato Soup (from Love Soup)
Sunday: Something simple- most likely popcorn, apples and cheese slices

For more menus be sure to visit Organizing Junkie. Happy Meal Planning!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Dr Who and Halloween Parties

Every Halloween a friend of ours throws a Halloween party on the weekend closest to Halloween. This year it was Saturday Oct 27th. While kids are more then welcome to come, the last two years we have chosen to have someone watch our boys. Being that the party starts around 7pm and that is bed time around here it's just easier. Plus it's nice to hang out with others without worrying about tired kids. This year when I asked Mark what he would be, his response was The Doctor. Then of course came the decision as to which Doctor he should be, as there are 11 Doctors. Have no clue what I'm talking about. That's okay. I'll look over that and explain.
For those who are confused, the Doctor is the main character of the BBC TV series Doctor Who. Originally  running from 1963- 1989 (according to Wikipedia) it was relaunched in 2005. Mark and I started watching it alittle after moving to Goshen on Netfllixs. Although to be honest after about the first 4 episodes I have to stop watching. It was alittle to creepy for me. Mark really enjoys the series. I started watching again with him at the start of season 5 and the introduction to the 11th Doctor. It still is creepy at times. And I often read while the TV, paying only enough attention to know what's going on but tuning out when my brain can't handle the images. It works and I'm enjoying getting to partake in the love of Doctor Who. Anyway I digress.
 After looking at pictures of all the past Doctors, Mark decided he wanted to be the 11th. Sadly he cannot pull of the hair. But at the end of Season 5 the Doctor wears a fez. Problem solved. Of course that meant we needed to come up with a fez. But a quick google search and I'm done. While there were several links for making a fez, I liked this one the best. Tally's Treasury had not only a tutuiral for making a fez, she also had Doctor Who drinks. I so want to try them out. We decided against it for this party, but I'm thinking I might just need to come up with a reason to try them. ;)

We had ordered a tie and sonic screwdriver from Due to some complications it never made it here and is now on it's way back to the company. Take about a frustration. I love ThinkGeek and will probably continue to love the site. But right now I have not forgiven them. All was not lost though. Mark ordered a sonic screwdriver flashlight from Not as cool as the one I had ordered for him as it doesn't open up, but it still is neat and looks like the Doctors. I made him a bow tie. I found this great tutorial for making bow ties out of old straight ties. Mark happened to have a maroon tie he never wears (the tag was still on) that was similar in color to what he needed. Add a mop from the Dollar Tree, a new shirt, and a tweed jacket from Goodwill and he was set to go. Of course then we have to explain to everyone who he is. Sigh.

So I've explained what Mark went as, but what about me. I had a hard time figuring out what I wanted to dress as. But when I was looking at pictures of Dr Who costumes online I saw several costumes for the TARDIS. Again for those who have no clue, the TARDIS is the Doctors time machine. It looks like a British Police Call Box, think telephone booth for emergencies. Armed with a list of possibilities  I decided this on this option while out shopping for the boys and Mark's costumes.
 I found a blue dress, well actually it is a sleep shirt but it works as a dress.

 I then painted on the windows and front. I used printable iron ons for the notices. I ironed them on white felt and glued them to the dress.

 I then got black ribbon and iron on letters for the Police Call Box sign. Add a belt to give shape to the dress and make it look nice and voila! I'm done. :) Sure it took time, but I'm pretty pleased with the results.

The harder part of the hat. The TARDIS has a light on top that flashes when it travels. Mine doesn't flash but it does light up. I took a small canning jar that didn't have a lid. Used the cardboard off the top of a pizza box to create a base. But a circle in it to put the jar through

 Covered that in blue felt. Cut another base from the cardboard and a circle big enough to get to the bottom of my LED tea light, but small enough that the light could be hot glued to the cardboard and not fall through.

 Then hot glue the jar to that base around the tea light and glue the felt down.

 Add a felt top and paint to make it look like a lantern. Oh and don't forget the elastic to go around my head. Hot glue is my friend. Really it is. :)

 I'm pretty proud of this hat. All and all I think we look great! And despite having to explain our outfits, we had a great time at the party. I love Halloween.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Pumpkin picking

I've been really slacking on the posting here. Not sure why I have not had the motivation to post. Anyway thought it was time to post again. And what better thing to tell you all about then our pumpkin picking adventures. :) This week is fall break. Starting this year the school district is going toward a "more balanced schedule," meaning we started really early in Aug, we get a week for fall break and almost a week and  a half for spring break, and go almost to the end of May. So the boys have all been home all week. Because of this Mark decided to take Wednesday off and we all went out to Fashion Farm near Ligonier, IN. In addition to all their pumpkins and gourds, they have several fun activities for families. The main attraction is the Pumpkin Fantasyland. This year's theme was video games.

 The boys loved it. If I haven't mentioned lately the boys have really been into Super Mario brothers.

We have my old Super Nintendo which the boys enjoy playing basketball, Super Mario World and most of all Mario Cart. In addition, Mark has set up a Nintendo simulator that has Nintendo 64 games in addition to the older games. Ian's favorite it Mario Cart and he is pretty good too.

So how cool was it that they had a Mario Cart pumpkin display.

In addition to Wario, who Aiden will be for Halloween this year, and Bowser, who Cai will be. No Waluigi sadly  That would have really made Ian's day as for some strange reason he seems to be his favorite character right now.

The boys did get to be in a racer with the display :)

My favorite one of the frogger which spread out along a whole wall at the end. I did not take any pictures of it. I'm not sure why now.

I did like the Pac Man display as well as the Angry Birds.

Sadly my Angry Birds picture does not do it justice. Mark and my biggest problem was the not all the facts were correct. With all the information out there it feels like such mistakes should not be there. The correct gaming facts are all available with a quick internet search. But we are video gamers, even if we are not as dedicated as others out there.
After the fantasy land we headed toward the corn maze.

Right before you get to the maze there was this jeep. It's hard to see but the driver and passenger are Burt and Ernie from Sesame Street. It was great!

They loved it. We could hardly keep up. The corn was sorta short so Mark and I could see over. But the boys loved it so it's all good.

There was a restraunt we ate lunch at and a crawl through hay maze. This was in a barn and you used a flash light to get through. Again big hit. In fact Ian said it was is favorite part. I think he went through 5 times or so. :) And of course we got pumpkins. They were all pretty big. We had to make a rule that you had to at least be able to lift your pumpkin yourself, not carry it, just lift. Still they are all good size which is cool

It was a great day. We all had fun. Now we just have to carve pumpkins. But that will wait till we are alittle closer to Halloween. It's coming soon!

Monday, October 1, 2012

Menu Plan Monday- Oct 1st, 2012

 It's Monday! And I'm blogging :) I missed last week, yes. I had planned on blogging Tuesday night. I spent the night on my new Kindle that Mark got me for my birthday. And the next night. :) What can I say, he did good! Despite having practice till 6:30, thus I had to cook my own birthday meal, it was still very good. I had salmon in the freezer that I baked. Along with homemade gluten free bread, green beans, and salad. All the veggies in the salad except the carrots were from my garden. Have to admit to feeling proud about that fact.
 I also made a green tomato pie for dessert. Aiden thought I should have made cake. But I wanted to try this recipe. I told him we would have cake for his birthday. I found this green tomato pie recipe in one of the 2011 summer issues of Organic Gardening. I can't remember which issue. It was very yummy. Basically it was green tomatoes, brown sugar, cinnamon and gluten free flour. I refused to tell the boys what was in the pie till after they ate it. I told them it would taste sorta like apple (which it did). They loved it. And when I told them what was in it they didn't seem to mind. So that was good.
So this week I'm heading to Kansas on Wednesday afternoon. I'm stay through the weekend, coming home on Monday. A college girlfriend, whom I lived with for a year, is getting married so I'm headed out to celebrate and attend the wedding. I"m so looking forward to this trip. Although I have to admit I'm freaking out alittle too. It will be the long time I've every been away from the boys. And I'm nervous about how things will be here at home without me. I though I'm sure everything will be fine. Sure it will be chaos. And Mark will probably get overwhelmed. But they will survive and have a good time without me. (I hope!) Anyway, because of this I"m only planning meals for today and tomorrow. So here it is.

Monday: Cheese Corn Chowder (More with Less cookbook)
Tuesday: Coconut Milk Curry over rice

Assuming I stay on top of things, I'll be back next week with a full menu! Have a good one.

Oh and don't forget to check out Organizing Junkie.