Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The Spooky Side of Halloween

This is how we usually decorate our house for Halloween each year.

But for this year... nothing.

We decided to use the time required for set-up towards installing a fence instead - something we've wanted for 12 years. So to make it up to our kids we've done a few other things to keep the Halloween spirit alive this year; one of these things was promising the 4 oldest kids a trip to the Haunted Forest. Allen and the 3 oldest kids had gone last year and came back with stories using the phrases 'totally freaked me out' and 'scared me half to death' which pretty much cemented in my brain that I would never have any desire to see it for myself. I mean, seriously, who PAYS for fear? Not me.

Until this year.

After numerous pleadings that I HAD to come and how it would be SO much more fun to go with someone who had never been, I caved. I live to please.

I had been to Knott's Scary Farm in California enough times as a teenager to know that the spooks and creepers can see fear in your face and that's when they target you. So my plan was to never look them in the eye.


Every creeper in that blasted Haunted Forest swarmed around me like I was the last piece of chocolate in a bowl of Halloween candy. And I didn't have to look at them... they would just breathe on the back of my head and I'd get the shivers and then they'd smell the fear oozing out of every inch of my body and follow me around relentlessly.

Can you say FREAKED. ME. OUT?!

Did it matter that I knew it was just a bunch of teenage boys for hire under those masks and cloaks? No. There is something about the whole atmosphere of a place that can dispel any words I had used to convince myself I could handle this.

Big 9 foot tall masked oxen? Gave me goosebumps. (made me scream) Freaky cloaked ax-bearer? Stalked me. Twice. (made me scream) Creepy clowns? Made me jump. (made me scream) White-masked chainsaw-wielders? MADE. ME. SCREAM. And that's the embarrassing part. I could not stop screaming! I would tell myself how ridiculous it was for a 37-year-old woman to be screaming at every turn in this blasted forest and to STOP IT RIGHT NOW but I couldn't listen to myself! Those stupid creepers made every last bit of common sense just disappear from my brain and I could not help being petrified.

When we finally escaped the maze I was exhausted. Every inch of my frame had been tensed up for the better part of an hour and I just needed to sleep. The next day I was aching as if I had done some strenuous sort of exercise the night before. But I will admit - in a strange way, it was a great time. Because who pays for fear? Me. And everything that was endured at night always looks better when you analyze it in the light of day.

For those of you who enjoy our home each Halloween, don't despair... next year we're going all out with some new features you haven't seen before - as well as a full-blown spook alley. And the best thing? At our house, no one pays for fear.

We give it to you for FREE.


Katie said...

You guys never cease to amaze me! I love seeing your house on Halloween and the process leading up to it! For someone who doesn't like haunted places, you certainly picked in my opinion, one of the scarier places to go! I LOVE going to the Haunted Forest! You need to learn to laugh instead of scream. Then, they think your laughing at them. It works every time for me! :)

Kara said...

Way to go! Isn't it amazing what we end up going through for our kids. I hope I don't have to have that experience for awhile. I'm like you and they're not my thing, but they do create memories.

Rebecca said...

Doug and I met on a group date, when we went to the Haunted Hospital. Remember when they used to do that at the state mental hospital? I did A LOT of screaming, because guess what...those people who were scaring me probably weren't just pretending to be insane. I think there's a lot wrong with that idea--which is probably why they no longer do it.
Anyway, my brother planted himself in little hiding places and scared me all the time when we were growing up, and I never got used to it, and I never stopped screaming. But Doug never had sisters to scare, so he missed that trick. (I guess it's not the same with your little brothers.) Now I'm the one who sneaks up on him in our dark house. He doesn't scream, but he does jump, and he gets pretty mad.
I think it's fun to be the scarer.

Kristin Garlick said...

Ha ha! Love it! I will NEVER pay for fear. I am the biggest scaredy cat EVER! Congrats to you. So brave.

Katie said...

I just have to say one thing to Becca...I will never forget the time I ScArEd you! Do you remember that? That's one of the most memorable experience from young women! I still laugh about it! :)

Corine said...

Way to go Gerb! :D I love going to places like that!

Actually, I CAN'T STAND Halloween stores the creepy evil bloody masks!

However, I do love to go to a local corn maze where you get to walk around outside... in the dark... where you CAN'T get a really good look at the masks but you CAN have the spooky experience all the same.

There too, the creepy spooks walk about sneaking up on you... breathing on you... jumping out in front of you... chasing you... Oh, and my absolute favorite - standing in front of you perfectly still with their eyes gazing into yours - doing absolutely nothing! Like zombies! (I never can understand why that creeps me out, but it does.)

I love going to that place with my teenagers. It is a blast! I always make it a goal to scare at least one of the creepy spooks who are hired to spook me! :D

Sarise said...

Those things creep me out too! I have never been to one and I never will. You couldn't beg me enough. Props to you for making it through alive. You should hold your head high.

Glad your house will be up and running again next year. We were looking forward to seeing the photos, but we can wait. :)

Stephenie said...

I do not like being scared. It makes me mad. You are good to give in and go. I would not have. I don't think I would have screamed, I would have sat down on the ground, closed my eyes and cried. You are such a great sport and will always be. way to go!

Richard & Natalie said...

I love to be "fake" scared. And yes, I scream like a little girl too. I'm glad to know I'm in good company.
BTW- Love your house! Can't wait to see it next year.

Chelle! said...

I hate being scared!! First comes the screaming and then...the crying!!! I remember going to the Haunted Forest and having my date pay the chainsaw guy to chase me through the entire forest...screaming and then, of course at the end crying!!! Oh, it was a date to remember (or not)!

Anaise said...

I went to Knott's Scary Farm once . . . and once was enough to keep me from ever ever ever going back to any "haunted" place ever. I won't even drive past the house in my neigborhood that sets up an absolutely disgusting cemetery for Halloween each year--I circle the block to avoid it.

I prefer Thanksgiving.

Teachinfourth said...

It's a shame to not see the house of hauntedness this year, but it gives me something to look forward to.

Rebecca said...

Yes, I do remember when you scared me, you naughty, naughty YW! It was not even Halloween, it was closer to Christmas time! And I have still not forgiven you for it...even though I sometimes laugh about it, too.

hintonrae said...

Better you than me! I hate creepy stalker things. I loved the movie Scream (so full of irony), but hate "real" horror movies and anything remotely resembling horror. Give me chocolate and comedy any day.

Farscaper said...

I totally agree with the idea of not paying to be scared. NO WAY!!!

You can ask my husband. I scare so easy on a daily basis. He has to either bring a jingly bell or say "jingle jingle jingle" when he comes up behind me when I'm working on the yard. If I don't hear him coming I jump and get mad.

The only haunted house I went to I didn't go in (I was support for my friends). I stayed outside but they had some scary guys wandering around for atmosphere I guess. One seriously scared me and I hit him. Apparently I'm not a screamer... I'm a hitter. Who knew?

OH... BTW... my kids had talked about going to your house for Halloween for 3 days prior. The night of I heard how excited they were to go to your house at LEAST a dozen times (probably more). When we got home the twins asked why we didn't go to your house. After explaining that we really did go I saw their faces fall in the most extreme bummerness I've ever seen.

Needless to say.. they will be totally excited to hear you will be doing it next year.

annette said...

Seriously- who pays for fear? Not me either.