Monday, November 2, 2015

Halloween, Take Six

The theme for this year's Halloween costumes, I believe, was "Fine."  They were fine.  Nothing extravagant, nothing high-maintenance, just fine.  Of course, when it comes to Halloween, "fine" suits me right down to the ground.  It seems to have become one of those holidays where America has done what it does best, which is to throw so much money at it that it becomes virtually unrecognizable and no longer much fun.  How many parents did I talk to this year whose kids' threw out-and-out tantrums because it wasn't precisely what they wanted?  Too many.  Our children obviously would never do that, because they are so perfectly well-behaved at all times.  Or they had the looming specter of their father and I eating every last piece of their candy at the slightest hint of whining.  One of those two.

Adelaide's was my favorite, because I had to do jack squat to put it together.  She is now old enough to costume herself.  Hallelujah.
Dapper Derek there in the background went as Dapper Derek.
This vampire already owned her white t-shirt, black pants, black cardigan, and that red tie belonged to Derek's grandpa.  The black satin was culled from my scrap fabric bin, and while she did wonder for five seconds if I might hem it for a cape, my hysterical laughter answered that.  I never even had to utter the word "No."  I did graciously loan her a safety pin to secure it to her clothing for trick-or-treating, because I am a generous monarch, always going out of my way for the serfs who inhabit my kingdom.  The blood- or red lipstick- was also loaned by Us.  That's the Royal We in action, to you peasants.

Adelaide was the tiniest bit put out when people kept mistaking her for some kind of scary Harry Potter; for me this only enhanced her costume.  We did not make the mistake of voicing this opinion to Daughter.

Caedmon was Batman.  
Cutest- I mean FIERCEST- Batman ever.
He had, at one point, mentioned something about being a ghost, but when I realized I didn't have enough white fabric on hand to make this happen, I ever so gently steered him toward super hero-dom.  I did not say words like "cape," "muscle costume," "we already have all these things," but I did speak about such high-falutin' concepts as "honor," "bravery," "protecting all the other little kids out on Halloween."  Caedmon ate this up like the tastiest deception he's ever consumed.  Adelaide rolled her eyes.  Atticus was too worried about his own costume to pay any attention to how his mother may or may not be manipulating holidays to fit her own whims.

Atticus wanted to be a dragon.  He's had grand plans for me for months:  How I could sew spikes down the back of his shirt, and craft wings that would attach to his back, and figure out a way to get fabric flames on something that he could hold in his mouth.  This was a subject of great humor to me, as I had no intention of doing any of those things.  I told him he could wear the costume he already owned, and when he protested that it was an Iron Man costume, I pointed out that the print on it was CLEARLY dragon muscles, not human, and after all, it came with a dragon mask, didn't it?
The truth is my dear friend Shayla handed a sack full of costume items to us awhile back (which included both of this year's costumes), and I have no idea if that mask is supposed to go with that costume, or if it's even a dragon.  All that mattered was that Atticus believed it, which he eventually chose to, but not before proposing a compromise to me:  He would wear the costume, but only if I sewed some wings to the sleeves of it, made out of some felt still in its Clearance wrapper he'd found in my fabric bin.  Oh, and it needed to start here and end here, and he wanted the bottoms of the wings to be cut in scoops, like this.  He is a canny negotiator.
This is why you always take a moment to poke through the Clearance bin at craft stores:  37¢ in 2012 is 2015's dragon wings.  

One of the best parts of the night was when we walked up to the house of an elderly gentleman sitting in front of his house with two bowls:  One with candy, and one with rocks.  The children got to pick an item from each, and I am not kidding you, the air around that house was filled with cries of, "Rocks!"  "Dad, look!  I got a ROCK!"  "Wow, look at this rock!"  No sarcasm, no irony, nothing; those kids were genuinely thrilled to be receiving a rock along with a sweet.  
Now, yes, they were smooth and polished rocks, but still, ROCKS.  Somehow that guy had the right idea, and was a popular destination in our part of town.

I can't help but wonder if he had one of these bad boys:
I remember asking for and receiving one of these for Christmas as a kid.  Shockingly, the results didn't exactly match those advertised.

Oh, yes, and for those of you keeping track (please tell me you don't), this has been our cheapest Halloween yet, because we already owned every last piece of these costumes.  So I win!  Except now, looking back at more extravagant Halloweens in our past where we spent all of $5 total, I'm amazed at how cute our children were in their little costumes.  Remember Caedmon the Chick?!  Or Atticus the Roasting Pan Turtle?  Or Adelaide the Tiger, and the first real post on the blog?

Deep breath, and repeat after me:  I will not get sentimental over this ridiculous holiday, I will not get sentimental over this ridiculous holiday, I will not get sentimental over this ridiculous holiday...


  1. A truer sentence was never written:

    "It seems to have become one of those holidays where America has done what it does best, which is to throw so much money at it that it becomes virtually unrecognizable and no longer much fun."

    I have begun to really hate Halloween --beginning as it does on Sept. 1st. The actual day itself is great fun, but the two months of build-up and Halloween-specific mega-stores is scarier than any monster!

  2. So glad you're still using those! I feel Atticus is always the one that makes you work just a little for this holiday :) As always, I love the creativity!

  3. Super fun--I always love your Halloween posts! I don't feel like QUITE such a bad mom then. grin

    (although we didn't even do Halloween at all this year. A local church was showing Inside Out, which I really wanted to see (I can't even claim it was for the children) so we went to that. The day after, I bought a huge bag of clearanced candy for $4.)

  4. I threw money at the costume this year because 1) a good red cape can get many years worth of use and 2) the only kid that wants to dress up still chose to be a ninja and the good Lord blessed me to just go with it as Halloween 6 days after a big race is pretty cruel.
    Truly spectacular dragon your have there.


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