Thursday, June 25, 2009

One last thing! No Grasshopper Killer here.

If you are arriving  via a Google Search for “Grasshopper Killer” you will not find any here at Nickols Manor.

No, I am terrified of Grasshoppers, but I don’t kill them.  I don’t even know how.  I wouldn’t dare.  Rather, I make them into Paper Mache Halloween Monsters.

But then again, if you ARE arriving here looking for Grasshopper Killer, you won’t even take the time to read this, but I just thought our Halloween friends would get a kick out of my most recent traffic BOOST.



*I will try to make this my last post tonight, haha.  “Try”.

Oppressive Heat, Sad Day, Disney, and 128 Days?

A miscellaneous post, in other words.

I don’t know if you would even know this, but Dallas is in a heat wave.  102 degrees today, 103 tomorrow and into oblivion, for all the weatherman knows.  Add our lovely Texas humidity and you get a heat index of 105 to 106.  Too hot to think straight, certainly too hot to wield a hot wire tool.

Did anyone say 128 days?  Since I am sitting on my duff complaining about the heat, that means I am apparently not out in the garage working on props like I should be, with 128 days left.  And then something even worse than that scared me this morning.  As I’m planning for Disney in mid-September, and realizing that I have 12 weekends til we leave…. I realize that a few of those weekends will be filled with shopping for the trip, packing for the trip, being excited about the trip…. hmmm.  That cuts into prop building time a lot.  Then I thought…. OH HOLY CRAP… we will be setting up the weekend after we get BACK from Disney… that means I am almost out of time, and its only June!  Ok, more like July.  Called Jayson on the phone, he laughed because he had already thought of this.  Talking to him I got even more freaked out, I then started sweating and so I quit thinking about it.

But who can work when its this flippin hot? 

My grand prop plans are starting to dwindle, and I am already counting what I can absolutely get done before September. 

I can’t possibly end this post without some mention of the passing of 3 icons of my childhood… Ed McMahon, who’s “Here’s Johnny” became such a part of all of our lives for so long…. Farrah Fawcett, an original Charlie’s Angel, a kind and caring soul…. and Michael Jackson, a pop icon.  I believe today is going to be one of those “Do you remember where you were when Farrah and MJ died on the same day” kind of days. 

RIP, and prayers to the family and friends of the above mentioned.

PS.  Thanks to all for the funny comments – you guys just make my day.  I really adore my friends in the Halloween community :)

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

A Bear or a Grasshopper?

Have your kids ever played that game… something that goes along the lines of…. “who would win… a ninja or a zombie?”  Well, duh.  A zombie!

Well, here we had the battle between a Bear and a Grasshopper.  Who’s tougher?  Who’s meaner?  Who won the contest?


There will be NOOOOOOO living with the man now.  He has officially bested me at a contest.  Whooped my ass on the internet.

Five minutes ago, I heard, “Make dinner for the WINNER, Woman!”  He should have pounded his chest for effect.  HAHAHAHA

What on earth ever possessed me to compete with my husband, anyways?!?!?!  lol.


Congratulations Jayson!!!!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

P.S. I’m a….


Dumb ass

In my last post, that is.  I have been corrected. 

Annabel Lee did NOT have a shiatsu massager skull guy thingee-ma-bobber.

The shiatsu was in the make/take before that.

I told you that the mechanical part isn’t of much interest to me… I just want it to magically work!  :)

Apparently, it was technically a blend door actuator.

Could have been a blender, for all I knew.  That’s what Jayson is for.

Sorry about that!

Annabel Lee

No, I didn’t forget that I had a blog, although it seems that way!  I spent a week in Las Vegas, started a new job that takes the word “stress” to a whole new level, and booked a Disney vacation for September with all the stupid dinner reservations that must accompany such an event.  Whew, that was one hella run-on sentence, and pretty much explains my last 6 weeks or so.

Right before I left for Vegas, we attended a Make/Take in Lewisville, Tx where we all decided to make a Shiatsu Grave Popper dude.  Originally a thread from Halloween Forums Prop Builders Group, Dave (DaveInTheGrave) gave step by step instructions for everyone to follow along. 

Jayson, being the mechanically inclined person that he is (thank the stars for that, because I am not) made the grave popper guy, which I’m sure after he sees this post, will update with details.

I on the other hand, could have cared less for tearing up a perfectly good $6 Goodwill massager, and concentrated on a new stone for our lil massager guy. 


Handy graph paper, planning the stone.

Favorite Poem, Annabel Lee by Edgar Allan Poe.  Had to memorize it in Seventh Grade English, and have loved it ever since. 

Birth and Death date – that of Virginia Eliza Clemm-Poe, his first wife, who I romantically believe the poem is written about.

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Carving is done, wood filler texture applied, ready for paint.  Why it looks crooked, I don’t know.

Size: 34”x29”x4”

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Seven layers of Teeny Tiny 1/2” Texas Foamboard (UGH!)

This is Annabel Lee.

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Side view, before the lettering was “aged”.

Lone Update 008


I’m sure Jayson will be along in the next few days to talk about his skull guy, and whatever else he plans to do with it.  But at least I have my latest work up here now!

How many more days til October 1st?!?!  AAAARGH!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Killer Grasshopper?

So Twisted Nightmares just had a prop contest in which you had to come up with your idea of a “Twisted Nightmare”.

Anyone that knows me, KNOWS I hate bugs, roaches and grasshoppers in particular.  So, I came up with the most twisted nightmare I could possibly conceive, without having to make a roach.  (EWWwWWW!  Roaches!!)

The Killer Grasshopper:

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TwistedNightmareContest 033

Papier mache and clay on a coat hanger armature.

Knife and axe blade – cardboard and tin foil with bamboo skewer handles.

Chainsaw – 1/2” foam carved to shape, popsicle stick base w/tin foil.

Lots of ways to KILL, and lots of nightmares to come. 


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