Things have been really busy lately, and so I haven’t had a lot of time to try things out. However, I have committed to several experiences in the next few months, and I’m really looking forward to them. So this week, I’m giving you a rundown on what you can expect to see reviewed and recommended (or not) here on the blog in the near future. I’d also like to know if any of you can give me some early feedback and/or suggestions if you’ve tried anything on the list.
Go to a Haunted House
If you’ve been reading my blog for awhile, you know I like scary stuff. I am fascinated by make up effects, animatronics, and scene setting in general, but especially in horror movies. So a haunted house seems like a perfect fit. So perfect, in fact, that you’re probably wondering “Amanda, wouldn’t this be something you do all the time?” I have been to half a dozen haunted houses in my life, but the last one was almost twenty years ago, so this one will be kind of a new experience. To be honest, I stopped going to Haunted Houses because they did exactly what they were supposed to do: scared the life out of me. There’s a huge difference between seeing all that cool horror stuff on a screen and having it jump out in your face. There came a point where I started making excuses not to go rather than going.
So why am I trying it again? Because it was also fun. I think I started avoiding the experience largely because of anticipation anxiety. When one of my friends suggested a haunted house recently, I stopped to examine my knee jerk reaction and remembered the fun. I’m thinking that, all these years later, I might have a different experience. If nothing else, it will be cool to see all of the things that go into the haunted house atmosphere, especially after almost two decades of advances in the industry. I guess we’ll see. Also, the haunted house we picked also has an escape room. I know I’ll like that part.
Make a Candle
My mother did candle making a few months ago and told me it was a lot of fun. Since Mom almost never steers me wrong (case in point: she was the one who suggested glass fusing ), I immediately put this on my list of things to try. The fall and winter seems an especially appropriate time to do this, because that’s the time of year when I burn the most candles. I don’t know that I’m going to end up with anything better than what I can buy in a store, but that’s not what this is really about. I’m looking forward to the experience of creating something that I can take home and enjoy, which is almost always more satisfying that just purchasing something. Plus, given that I know very little about the process, it’s entirely possible that I’m underestimating the options for making something totally unique and different that I couldn’t just go out and buy.
Take a Gingerbread House and/or Holiday Decorating Class
I love cooking. I especially love baking. I am absolutely horrendously terrible at decorating. If you’re newer to the blog, you might think I’m exaggerating. I assure you, if anything, I’m underselling it. I want to get better at this. Gingerbread house decorating immediately occurred to me because it uses a lot of different skills and techniques and so would be a good survey class that would also, in theory, give me something super cute to add to my holiday home decor. Or, potentially, a ridiculous looking conversation piece. Worst case scenario, I get a disaster and a fun story (one of my dad’s important lessons).
I’m including the caveat that I might do a different kind of decorating class instead because there are a lot more general decorating classes in my area than specific gingerbread house classes. What I end up doing is going to depend on scheduling and availability. Taking a class is an easy way to learn, as well as a fun social activity.
Create Personalized Holiday Gifts
The impetus behind this is pretty simple: putting your time, energy, and effort into a present for someone makes it mean more. Additionally, most of the people in my life are at the point in their lives where they get hard to shop for. I know this, because I’m at that point myself. In my 20s, and even my early 30s, when someone said “what do you want for your birthday or Christmas?” the answers were easy. I need a bookshelf. I need a new set of kitchen knives. I need a DVD rack. The key connecting factor there was “I need”. After awhile, though, you get to the point where you have accumulated the things that you need and even most of the things that you want. I have trouble making my own Christmas list, much less figuring out what to get everyone else. So the idea of something personal that I created is really appealing.
I originally thought of creating…something…from the ground up for half a dozen people. Then I realized that might be a bit much for my first time out of the gate. When I stumbled on these cute little fill in books on Amazon, I decided they would be a great middle ground. Between now and the holidays, I’m carrying one or two of them with me at all times and filling them in a little bit at a time.
Have you tried anything on my list? Anything you think sounds interesting? Suggestions for future experiences?