Tag Archives: family fun

Ideas for Halloween you probably already had (but should repeat again anyway)

With just a week left until Halloween (cue my approaching sob fest), there are still so many ways left to celebrate this most beloved (albeit scary) time of year. I’m sure no one is as much of a horror/Halloween enthusiast as me (read: crazy person), but that doesn’t mean you can’t still enjoy the same means of haunted celebration as I do. For those of you last-minute tricksters, here are a few fun holiday ideas you can still squeeze into this last week of the best month of the year (best for me, anyway…).

Jack the Pumpkin King and Zero. BFFs.

Jack the Pumpkin King and Zero. BFFs.

Carve pumpkins. I mean, duh, c’mon. It’s sort of a no-brainer when it comes to this Halloween tradition. The last week of October is actually the perfect time to do it, so that you can have a chance to enjoy your carvings but so that they don’t rot before the trick-or-treaters arrive, like some people’s pumpkins will who tried to be all overachievers about it and carved them weeks ago. Just saying. My twist this year, though, is to make it something worth a little more to you than the standard toothy-grinned pumpkins of Halloweens past. Surprisingly, I have never carved a Nightmare Before Christmas pumpkin (shocking, I know, but that’s mainly because I can’t draw for crap and no one has ever offered to stencil something for me until now), so it seemed only fitting that my boyfriend and I carve our first pumpkins together using his skills as a graphic designer/artist and my skills as an obsessed NBC fan. Errr, yeah. But they came out awesome, so whatever.

Indulge in cinematic horror (but not actual horror). Ever the scary movie fanatic, I highly encourage you to indulge in at least one or two horror movies before the month is up. I have so many favorites, the list could go on forever, but if you’re looking for a good variety, check out my posts from years past here, here and here.  I don’t think you’ll be disappointed. And if you are, I’ll just come for you in the night while you sleep.

Terrified. And the Three Little Pigs.

Terrified. And the Three Little Pigs.

Attend all the scary things. What would Halloween be without haunted houses and other scary attractions of the like? I took a break this year from the overly-commercialized Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Studios, mainly because of how long the drive is, how expensive tickets are and how much of your night is spent standing in line (because the quality of scare is 10 out of 10, but the other factors make it drop pretty low on my favorites list). Instead, I sought out some local haunts I’d never been to before, dragged all my friends to them, and I have to say I was incredibly satisfied with both the level of scare and the price of admission (definitely adding The Haunted Angelus Scream Park and The Radley Haunted House to my list of annual Halloween events in the Tampa Bay area).

If anyone has anything to add to my (rather dull) list, let me know. I’m trying to hold on to Halloween as tightly as I can in hopes that this year, maybe, just maybe, it will last a little longer than its usual 31 days…

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It’s beginning to look a lot like…Halloween

Even though we’re still a few days out til October, the fall/Halloween season is basically already upon us (at least for an addict like me). To kick off my favorite time of year, my friends and I hit Sweet Fields Farm for their annual corn maze (despite the fact that they don’t offer night tours anymore, the jerks). Although, with the typical sketchy Florida weather, we almost. didn’t. get. to. go. Stupid rain. Apparently you’re not capable of walking through a corn maze if it’s raining (so dumb). But I willed the rain to stop (it was clearly my pleading, not the weather pattern, that cleared the skies) and we made it in with the last admission. And of course had a blast (how could you not in a corn maze?).

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Children of the corn.

Since living in Florida, fall and Halloween have never been quite the same. As someone who lives to be scared and spends their whole year waiting for this one month, I still find plenty of ways to get my scare on and get into the fall spirit, but it’s not like it was living up north, with the changing leaves and the cool, crisp nights, perfect for bonfires and hot chocolate and freezing your butt off while you’re trick-or-treating.

Oh, who am I kidding, who wants to be cold and miserable? I love Florida. I do miss things that were unique to Pennsylvania, like Mazezilla and The Hotel of Horror, but I’ve discovered a few Florida haunts that I’m hoping will pan out and turn into a yearly thing (more on that later). More than anything, I just want to go to a bunch of haunted houses, scream my head off often, watch a lot of terrifying movies and never have it be November 1st.

Also, please bring back my favorite Halloween commercial. K thanks.

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5 reasons Disney World is (most likely) better as an adult

Having lived in Florida full-time for the last 7 1/2 years (give or take those few months I moved to L.A. and that semester abroad), I’ve enjoyed many of the perks the Sunshine State has to offer: the beaches, the warm weather, the lack of snow. And, of course, Disney World. Although I’ve been up that way (it’s only a 2 hour drive) a handful of times since moving here, I haven’t stayed on-site in almost 12 years, since the last family Disney trip, when we still lived in P.A. So getting to hit the House of Mouse with a good friend and her family and actually stay in a Disney resort awarded me with many perks, namely, park-hopping and day-drinking. Among the (many) awestruck children we encountered during our long weekend, I have to say it sure seemed like we were having more fun. Why you may ask?

You can actually drink the alcohol. I realize Disney isn’t going out of its way to promote the alcoholic side of life, but it’s definitely present within the parks and resorts (especially Epcot). And as a kid, you’re just not afforded the opportunity to partake in such merriments as drunken stupor. Grown ups for the win!

Got backstage with Mickey, NBD.

Got backstage with Mickey, NBD.

The characters don’t freak you out (as much). It’s hard to imagine anyone getting freaked by someone dressed as the lovable Minnie Mouse or the adorable Winnie the Pooh. But it happens. I mean, if kids can scream and cry on Santa’s lap, what makes you think they’re not going to flip a shit when you put them next to a stranger in a costume with a face that doesn’t even move?

You tolerate the long lines better. I’m not saying it’s fun to stand in line for hours and wait for something. It isn’t. But when you go to Disney (or any fun theme park, for that matter), you have to anticipate that you’re going to stand in a lot of lines. Actually, most of the time you spend there will be spent in one line or another. And that’s acceptable, because you want to get on that ride or take a picture with that character or buy just one more corn dog. But when you’re a kid and you have to stand in a line for anything more than about a minute and a half (and that’s probably pushing it), you instantly become whiny and cranky and no one wants to be around you (and they certainly don’t want to stand in line next to you).

Grown ups have more stamina. Generally speaking, adults can last longer at Disney than kids, thereby getting more accomplished and enjoying a longer day at the parks. Between all the walking, standing in lines and overall exhausting nature of going to theme parks, it’s really no wonder kids poop out faster than adults. Which is why you usually see the smaller ones passed out in their strollers midday while their parents debate whether to bail on the ride they’re waiting for or not. It’s a vicious, internal struggle, really.

Tower of Terror, one of my faves. Yes, I realize I'm screaming like an idiot. Completely intentional.

Tower of Terror, one of my faves. Yes, I realize I’m screaming like an idiot. Completely intentional.

You can ride all the good rides. As an adult, there are no height restrictions when it comes to all the good rides. Unless you’re a midget, then tough luck I guess. But for us normal-sized grown ups, the only thing keeping you from riding “The Yeti Ride” (as my friend calls it) is your own fear. The only other restrictions you might encounter are those on the kiddie rides, because they seem to want to keep us kids-at-heart-adults miserable by denying us access to the slowest, most boring rides imaginable. But who wants to go on Aladdin’s Flying Carpet ride, anyway? Oh wait. I guess I did. Twice.

All in all, going to Disney as a kid is magical and surreal and unforgettable and mostly I’m just bitter that I don’t have the time-traveling ability to go back to the days of my youth and enjoy it again. But I still think those same kids would enjoy themselves just a teeny bit more when they come of age and have a better appreciation for what’s going on around them. So long as they know how to still have fun like a kid. And scream their heads off on all the rides (especially the Peter Pan one, that shit’s scary fo’real).

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6 Halloween costume ideas (based on this year’s popular culture)

If you haven’t already decided what you’re going to be for Halloween this year, here are a few ideas based on current pop culture obsessions.

The Royal Baby. Who doesn’t love when adults dress up as babies? Make sure you distinguish yourself as the royal baby and not just some random, non-royal, unimportant, everyday baby. You certainly wouldn’t want to be confused with an ugly baby, like your coworker’s or your best friend’s.

Minions. Everyone loves these adorable Despicable Me characters, and if you don’t, well, there’s probably something wrong with you. They are so lovable and original, you are bound to get a lot of compliments throughout the night. Be especially impressive by contorting your face to literally accommodate the cyclops eye of Carl. And make sure you play the part and walk around chanting “Bee-do” and saying other unintelligible nonsense. People will love you for it.

A pregnant Kim Kardashian. It’s still hard to believe sometimes that this particular Kardashian reproduced (and with arrogant Kanye West nonetheless) but the world continues to love her and her offspring despite her flaws. Plus I just think it would be really funny to see someone walking around as a preggo Kim.

The Fox. By now everyone and their mother has seen the instantly famous “What the fox says” video and if not, you must be living under a rock. Regardless, this chart-topper features several different versions of The Fox to choose from (not to mention other animals that make for one of the coolest tea parties I’ve ever seen). If you do decide to dress up as The Fox, maybe you can enlighten us as to what a fox actually says, because no one seems to know.

Miley Cyrus twerking in her stuffed bear backpack. I don’t approve of Miley’s recent behavior (or music videos), but you can play this one up as a joke and probably still win a costume contest or two.

Creepy Snickers commercial lady. This one isn’t actually current (thanks to the selfish ad guys who decided not to air the commercial again this year), but it’s still relevant enough to make this list, and awesome enough to never get old. It’s pretty much the best commercial I’ve ever seen, and one of the creepiest costumes you could hope for this south of Halloween Horror Nights, and I think it would be pretty fantastic if I saw someone out and about dressed up in the mask and leopard coat.

Good luck executing your costume, and please get back to me with some photographic proof. Also be sure to check out my costume ideas from last year here.

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