Sunday, October 31, 2010

Best Halloween Costume Ever

I love Halloween. Every year I try to come up with a really fun, unique costume. Since this is my first Halloween with a baby, I knew my costume would have to be even more special and memorable. I also knew that I would be carrying my little dude, so I had to find a way to incorporate that into my costume.
After a chat with my brother-in-law I realized what the perfect costume would be.

King Kong.

The actual monkey part of the costume was easy. I just bought a monkey costume. There are gorilla baby costumes out there, but the ones I found were just too pricey. I think I ended up spending $12 on the little monkey costume from Target. Done.

The Empire State Building part was a bit more work.

I started out with 2 shipping boxes. I made sure that the largest one fit snugly on my head, so it wouldn't move around too much. Then I added a Kleenex box and a toothpaste box. The embellishments on the top are just cut out bits of a Count Chocula cereal box. I glued everything together, cut out a hole for my face and started spray painting. After that it was just a matter of a cheap toy airplane from the dollar store, a plastic underwire from the notions department (to attach the airplane to the top of the building) and lots and lots of electrical tape.

My husband even had to try on the costume.

Our King Kong costume turned out better than I had hoped and we have had a lot of fun with it.

Friday, October 22, 2010


I had a pain in the ass experience with a service rep on the phone today.  Actually, I had two of them.  I get very angry when I have to call anyone for any type of tech support/customer service.  It generally starts as soon as I hear "para continuar en español, por favor, pulse el número dos".

After complaining for a bit on Facebook, I felt inspired to tell my story.  But who wants to just read about my annoying customer service experience?  Wouldn't it be much more interesting to watch it in animated film format?

Enter Xtranormal.  

I'm sure most of you have heard of Xtranormal and if you haven't, you have probably seen one of the videos.  Xtranormal is a simple online tool that allows anyone to make their own movies.  As they say,  "If you can type, you can make movies."  I decided to give it a try.

It really is as simple as they say, and if you don't choose to publish your movie it doesn't cost you a thing.  If you do choose to publish it is very inexpensive.  I purchased 300xp (Xtranormal currency) for $5.  I spent 37xp publishing my first movie, so it was pretty cheap.

You begin by choosing your actors and set, and then you just start typing. It took a few minutes to figure out how to use all of the directing icons, but once you get the hang of it it's really very simple.  Strangely, dialogue that normally wouldn't be that funny is hilarious when it's delivered in a flat, monotone, robotic voice.  Particularly swearing.

Without any further ado, I present my first ever film!

This was a lot of fun to make, and I'm sure I will be making more.  I encourage all of you to give it a try, and if you do, please share your movies! I would love to see them.