An Old House, American Horror Story and My Newest Painting

Lately I have started watching the show American Horror Story with my daughter. I don’t know why I do this to myself because I am easily spooked but it’s a good show. I really do enjoy it. However, we live in an old house, a house with lots of creaks and shifting; a house that hisses and whines on a windy day.


It was built in 1878 as a school house, attached to the back is an old shed which we are renovating to become a family room. The shed has exposed wood beams and a vaulted ceiling so it will be really cool.

In our tear down, when we started the demolition of the existing walls in this back shed we found an old creepy half size door, perfect size for kids to come in and out. On the opposite side of the room there are stairs that lead to an old cellar.

Sometimes we have to go down to the cellar, it’s where the water pump and sump pump are located. The cellar is filled with dark, stone cubby holes and storage areas. These areas are too dark to peer into so when you are down there it has a definite creepiness and you can’t shake the feeling you are being watched.

Because it’s such an old house and I am easily spooked my imagination likes to play tricks on me. One night I woke up to the sound of children talking,  I went into my daughter and step daughters room to give them proper hell for being awake in the middle of the night. Except they were fast asleep. Or perhaps pulling a fast one on me. I still haven’t been able to figure it out.

I also hear what sounds like walking upstairs when I am here alone and it is dead silent. We have a french door that separates the upstairs loft where I paint to the kids bedrooms and bathroom (our bedroom is on the first level). The french door keeps the cat and dogs out of the bedroom area so when I hear this walking I know it’s not animals. My husband says it’s just the house creaking, especially on a windy day and I know he’s right but still, it’s hard not to be spooked.

Here is my latest painting, inspired by my over active imagination and my watching of American Horror Story.



A Kids Halloween Party, A Terrifying Haunted House = Traumatized Kids And A Happy Halloween

Last weekend we had our youngest daughter Isabelle’s birthday party with her school friends. It was a little late coming, as her actual birthday was September 27th, but better late then never.

We decided to do a Halloween theme to also celebrate the upcoming season that is a favourite in our house. I have to say it was quite the challenge planning a Halloween party that would last no longer then two hours, keep 16 kids between the ages of 6-10 happy without scaring the crap out of them.

We decided we would play a few games, have a haunted house and do a palm reading session; palm reading courtesy of our 16-year-old daughter. The party was a huge hit.

The haunted house was down a wide back hallway that has a window bench and flanking bookshelves.  We had a coffin on the window bench with my oldest daughters friend hidden inside adorned in a scary mask and vampire collar. On the opposite side of the hall, hidden just behind our bedroom door was my husband complete with black mask. He was holding an industrial air compressor to shoot the kids with blasts of air and of course the occasional leg grab.

We managed to design this haunted house with no light leaks and had a fog machine running while a strobe light which featured thunder sounds sent off beats of flashing light, not unlike streaks of lightening.

Waiting in an excited line the kids went in batches of two or three with my daughter as their guide. I was the line police. By the end of this charade the kids were pushing, screaming, falling over themselves and each other to get another turn. Four of them were too scared to go, one went anyway, and two others broke down in tears while one poor girl developed a nervous bellyache. In the end it was chaos and terror and better then any fun house at the fair.


Isabelle in her black party dress playing with her friends, the entrance to the Haunted House is behind the bloody hand curtain.


The front entrance and stairwell with a zombie baby caught up in cobwebs.


The front entrance adorned with spooky creatures and lots of spider webs.


The fortuneteller’s table, luckily everyone at this party was foretold they would live a long and happy life.

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