Monday, August 31, 2009

Which story to tell?

First folly

This donation box is a design by Toph (the other Chris) who drew up a quick sketch after we all batted around ideas for a comment box. He was musing afterwards that when he makes simple sketches, we tend to make what he draws. The more complicated they are, the less likely we are to make.

"It is because we know we can never live up to your drawing" I replied. "We take one look at that and go, no way can we make something that cool." :D We are a bunch of under achievers!

Second folly

I made the big chest joke, because I am practicing because we are setting up the scaffolding on "talk like a pirate day." Someone thought we should all wear eye-patches as we are working on setting up.

Wouldn't that be fun?!

"No, not really, I just don't envision the crew out there with drills and mallets walking around the yard and up and down stairs with an eye patch on being the best idea. " :D

If that be the case, I will just call the ambulance in advance and ask them to wait outside the yard.....cause it will only be a matter of time :)

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Confession of a

pretty good vegetarian ....Anyway, I know that I have eaten my fair share of soup that had animal stock, or something that was flavored with some meat product. I own a few things with leather. But as a rule, if I know it is in there, I won't eat it or buy it. Just like the animals too much. No big hidden agenda...not trying to change the world...just my world. :)

After being a vegetarian (husband too) for 25 years I have been talking to my doctor about improving my health and trying to reduce carbs (sometimes I am more a carbotarian than a vegetarian...cheese pizza, mac n cheese, cheese sandwich (for the record, no, I did not steal Pumpkinrot's), garden burgers...) and she said something about maybe (not trying to change my belief system) but just maybe I should look at adding fish to my diet.

Hum......I have heard a lot of people try to convince me that fish are not "animals" over the years.... a few time, sitting across from them having fish n' chips, I was almost sold. Almost. ;)

After my initial shock, I thought about it and talked to husband. We thought that maybe we would eat a bit better if we loosened up our diet. There are lots of options, free range animals and the like. At least the animals are treated better.

But today I passed 'the chicken truck' on the way to work, happens a few times a week. A big semi filled with chickens in cages, hundreds of them. Today was a nice day, but some days it is pouring rain and freezing, others it is over 100 degrees....I know they are just going to be eaten anyway....but still. Yeah, as of today, Frog Queen is still a vegetarian.

Imagine my surprise

at the last Hauntcon when I look over to see a guy I have never seen before with a name tag that says

John Kennedy
Haunted Attraction Magazine

Wait...what the....did Leonard hire some help? What's up?

It appears that quietly one day in March, Leonard handed over the reins of his beloved magazine to John.

Hum, really? I was a bit shocked.

Well, it did not take but a few moments for John to see our name badges and quickly come over and introduce himself to husband and I. Wow, that was unexpected...I mean all these pro haunters everywhere and you are talking to

We became fast friends and spent a lot of time at the show over dinner and on bus rides to events getting to know each other better. We were both quite honest about what we like and what we thought held back the industry. We talked in dept about our thoughts on the place of a home haunter in the greater scheme of Halloween.

He was very attentive and quick to compliment. No matter how many times I told him that there are far better haunts than ours out there that should be featured in the magazine. He was fast to support his reasons for why The Davis Graveyard is a stand out home haunt that can and has inspired many other haunters.

It is just not one of those things that I see when I look at my stuff. John, Leonard and husband are always quick to remind me that I am way too hard on our stuff. I guess I am, but that is not all of it.

Part of the history (bad juju) that I have spoken about in the industry is some of the things that have been said about haunters. Mostly just opinions and misunderstandings mixed with a bit of ego. We are all human, it is bound to happen.

In life.... there will always be someone that does not like what you do, and feel the need to express that to you, either to genuinely to help you, or to support their own insecurities by cutting someone else down. Either way, it is usually painful, no matter how much you smile on the outside and say thanks. Feelings get hurt, and we even the best of us can say something we don't mean or foster an opinion that is based more on our feelings than fact.

I never wanted to be part of that. Unfortunately, I have been. The more I say to my defense, the worse I seem to have made the matter. It still bothers me, but, since I have no options left to myself but to work through and around it, that is what I do.

In my own way, to combat that way of thinking, I make a point to go out of my way to be kind and supportive of all haunters. It is really my nature, if someone takes it the wrong way, there is nothing I can do about it, and I am not going to change based on someone's interpretation of my intentions.

I try to always remember we are all doing this as a form of expression and creativity. The best way to make that grow is with support, it helps me, and, I may be going out on a limb here, but I imagine it also helps you (other haunters and creative people.)

I am trying not to focus on or get defensive in advance to the comments of the people that think that the Davis Graveyard is not the best example of a home haunt for this magazine, or because we attend the conventions is why we are featured. That is their opinion, and I have more productive things to do with my time than to try and change their minds. Believe what you want and I will do the same :)

Today I am focusing on how cool it is to see our haunt all printed out in a (very nice) shinny magazine. And how lucky husband and I are to have the support of so many haunters, both home and professional. Thanks everyone.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Just in case

I am keeping the original french version of the saying for the plaque....cause I do plan to replace it someday. A true Frog Queen folly :D

Husband does not know about this blog yet, so I do not have to worry about him finding out what I am up to!!!

Hee! Cause he would just be rolling his eyes at me right now.

Probably my favorite

job was when I lived in Southern California and worked for a newspaper in the circulation department.

Now this was back in the day when they actually had kids on bicycles delivering papers. I have a warm spot in my heart for that...most of the time. :) Sometimes those little demons (I mean children) would drive me nuts!! They would break windows, destroy plants, and I believe one particular little demo...oh, child, was actually trying to kill this one guys dog with the paper!!

Anyway, twice a year we would have field trips to Disneyland if the carriers (that's what we called them! See it is all coming back to me!) met certain sales and service goals.

We would go in the spring and the fall - I just loved seeing Disneyland all decked out for Christmas! Absolutely beautiful!

Anyway, since I went twice a year with about 30 kids (are we understanding now why the Frog Queen has not children of her own :) I have to say I probably saw the Captain EO show 20 times.

But in my defense, I have seen the Haunted Mansion at least three times that amount. In fact, I was very little, but I did get to go see the Haunted Mansion the week that it opened up. My dad and his friend took me (I think they used me as an excuse to go themselves :) it is probably one of my earliest childhood memories.

Very likely the reason that I do love Halloween and scary stuff so much!


Friday, August 7, 2009

Who's bright idea was it

to come up with a promotion where we spray painted lettering on moving boxes and place them in the branches? Really, who thought that they could just hand cut a few "stencils" paint a little and be done with it?

Oh, yeah, that was me.

Lesson from the Frog Queen boys and girls, if you start down the evil path of marketing and advertising....karma will find you and make you say "yes" to ridiculous ideas that will waste hours of your life!!! It is not worth it. You may think you are paid to much to be out in the parking lot spray painting boxes for days. But you are wrong, yes, you are.

Play it safe, get a degree in accounting or be science teacher. You will thank me later.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

At the after tour

wrap up - basically another excuse to drink wine - we talk about how the tour went. Almost everyone said that they got comments about the "scary stuff". Most of them thought it was funny and unusual, and had no problem with it.

A few of the gardeners didn't think it was so funny and thought that it distracted from the gardens. I completely understand, some of these gardens are beautiful and have been featured in many publications. They love what they do, it is their passion.

It is an "ah" moment for me, I resign to stick to my passion, Halloween!! Now I just help organize the tour, and save my garden visits for my Halloween open house. Works fine for me :)

I have to say, I do miss having my yard all perfect! Nothing gets you motivated for yard work like a few hundred people walking through your garden!

Speaking of many days until Halloween? :D

Monday, August 3, 2009

What is this?

Well...I tend to ramble in my posts, and when I actually release them to you, I have removed a lot of strange Frog Queen ramblings....which I think are funny, but completely distract from the tale I am telling.

So this blog, my friends, is my footnote blog.....I will link here from my normal blog when I want to go off on a tangent.

I will never purposely updated this will only be updated when I link to Frog on the Pumpkin.

It is a bit of my ode to Terry Pratchett. One of the gods that I worship. :)