Luxury on the Cheap
Happy pre-Halloween!  Halloween is my favorite holiday.  Not only are there treats and tricks - but I love going out as something gross.  You know... On purpose. 

It's pretty easy to have a fun and frugal Halloween.  There's no need to spend a fortune on spooky decorations; as with most things, you can use what you have.  For instance, those spider webs that are everywhere in Seattle this time of year?  Leave 'em up! Call 'em decorations! Why buy the fake ones when you have perfectly good real spiders already?  And those mystery vegetables growing hair in the back of your fridge?  Very Scary.  I'm thinking Instant Table Centerpiece!

All right, so maybe letting vegetables grow hair in your fridge is not very frugal, but we've all done it sometime, so I consider making them into a display as recycling.  Don't judge me!

Halloween at my house is always a blast.  I'm usually not a fan of store-bought fun, but I do have some decorations that I purchased for pennies RIGHT AFTER Halloween in years past.  Seriously, if you're going that route with any holiday decorations, buy right on or after the holiday when all that crap is on sale.  Stores can't wait to get rid of it. 

No doubt, the best part of Halloween for me is dressing up.  I'm a show-off, so I don't like to have the same costume as everyone else.  Also, I'm a tightwad, so I don't want to pay a Queen's ransom.  That's why I constuct original costumery from stuff found at the Mecca of Bargains, Goodwill and Value Village.  Or whatever thrift store is close.

All kinds of gowns and robes and beads can become capes, cloaks, and queenly wear for All Hallow's Eve.  An abandoned bridesmaid dress plus deathly makeup and fake blood becomes a dead prom queen.  A four dollar set of thrift-store fairy wings, plus giant water-balloon boobs, tank top, and a purple stretch pants once transformed me into the fearsome Crazy Redneck Lady.  Go nuts!  See what you can do with ten bucks or less! 

Of course, there are the stand-bys that you can make for free... A white sheet makes you a ghost, or a toga-wearing Greek Goddess, or with a bunch of white crap glued to it, white trash.  Your yard-work clothes plus a smudged face can make you a hobo... or all your bills and a zillion IOUs pasted all over can easily turn you into the National Debt.  The point is, raid the closet with a creative eye and think of what you could put together with what you have.  A hippie?  A cowgirl?  A republican? 

All of these things work for kids' costumes, too.  Seriously, who has better imaginations than kids?  Give a kid a cardboard box, some duct tape, and a marker, and they'll come up with their own costume!  So let them!  Take your kids and hit the thrift stores, and you'll be shocked and awed at the good stuff you find.  If you borrow just a teaspoon of kidly inspiration, you can create a one-of-a-kind costume, a pack of fun memories.... and it totally counts as Quality Time.

And the blackmail photos will last a lifetime.  Hell yeah!  Up top!

OK, since I promised in last week's audio blog .... I offer you Nacho Mama's Most Excellent Recipe for Fake Blood.  Instead of buying a little bit of the expensive stuff, you'll have so much fake blood you'll need some fake Kotex.

You will need:  Karo Syrup (corn syrup, found in any grocery store, light or dark) and Red Food Coloring. (Use the leftovers from Easter.)  Squirt the food coloring into the syrup bottle until you like the color.  Shake it up.  Apply liberally.


Happy Halloween, Bitches! 

Also, check out this week's audio blog for bonus tightwaddery.   


Nacho Mama  ; )


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