Fair warning, this post is gonna be really lame. I don’t yet have pictures, since I still can’t find my camera. Brooke graciously took some cute ones though, so I’ll post them as soon as they’re uploaded.
I have a bit of a history with Halloween, meaning that up until recently, I sorta hated it. As a very young child, I only went trick or treating twice. Basically, I don’t remember it at all.
Then, as a five/six year old (can’t remember which!) my brother and I got the chicken pox, which turned into a massive case of pink eye since our immune systems were down. We looked like the Walking Dead. As such, we were exclusively quarantined inside the house for an entire week! One of these days happened to be Halloween. I remember wanting to go out so badly, but instead having to watch from the front window as costumed kids paraded up to our porch and grabbed candy out of the bowl my mom left out. I remember feeling so cheated and so so so sorry for myself! I vowed that next year I would have the best costume ever and get all the candy that was ever made.
But what happened instead? By the next year, my parents decided that they “didn’t believe in Halloween” any longer. (Just to get things straight, the rest of this post isn’t about parent bashing. Also, Keith and I have already made how we feel about this turn of events within our childhood very explicitly clear. No hidden feelings here).
First of all, how does one “not believe” in Halloween? It exists. End of story. Choosing whether or not to participate? Different story.
Anyways. For the next 10 years, my parents didn’t believe in Halloween. October 31st does, in fact coincide with a fun little holiday that Protestants like to call, “Reformation Day”. So we had, oh yes, I kid you not, “Reformation Day” parties instead of Halloween.
Imagine you’re an 8 year old kid and how you would feel about this. All of your friends are out, dressing up, getting pounds of chocolate, and YOU are STUCK inside church, watching a long, boring movie about Martin Luther. You think this is a “trick”? It’s not.
So, I grew up hating Halloween. I wanted so so so badly to participate, especially because I was homeschooled and already felt a little bit like a freak (there were a great many factors at play here, not just Halloween). Every year, I would come up with a fun costume idea that was “not scary or witch-craft related in any way please-Daddy-can-I-go?? <lotsofgirltears>”, and every year I would spend the night sulking, forced to watch a 2 hour historical movie.
And then, this magical thing happened. Joe and Janelle were born and reached toddler age. I think my parents suddenly realized that after these 2 kids, they were done having any more and it was “now or never” time for living up the cute childhood moments.
So what did they do?
Somehow, we magically started believing in Halloween again! I watched my parents buy “the J’s” costumes and parade them around neighborhoods. “Bring back Reformation Day!” I always felt like shouting. “It’s like a rite of passage! They musttt endurrrrrre!!!!!!”
By this time, I was pretty much in High School, and I had no real idea what Halloween was supposed to be about. I was over it. I think I hung out with a few friends on a couple Halloweens, but that was it.
When I got to Biola, I sort of avoided the holiday as though I hated it, when deep down, I was still pining away for my lost childhood.
And then I became a teacher and saw the extent to which girls will go to sluttify themselves in honor of the holiday. “This is my costume!” they would say proudly, and I would think to myself, was Party City too expensive and Victoria’s Secret the only option?
But now we have a kid. A kid who has never had candy but has blown a gasket over mildly sweet things like watered down juice and blueberry waffles. Plus, he’s my kid, so I knew that there was NO WAY he didn’t like candy.
I decided to make him a costume, which turned out to be a good idea in one sense (he only wore parts of it for a few minutes, so I’m glad I didn’t spend more than $10), and a bad idea in another (he was able to easily rip/tear it all off). You will just have to wait for pictures to see! Also, I sorta dressed up too….because it’s only fair that SnowCone get to participate! And let me tell you, Halloween can provoke jealousy between siblings…
Let me say, Halloween is so much more fun with kids! I totally get it now! Cute costumes! Pictures! Having neighbors fawn all over your baby’s cuteness and tell you what an adorable child he is! Watching him taste his first candy! What’s not to like?
We drove up to Brooke’s house in Paso, where we started making the rounds with her and Linda (Tess stayed home to make cookies for the homeless shelter…what a saint). G was already exhausted, as we didn’t even start trick or treating until 7pm, his bed time! After only hitting about 10 homes (including a good friend of ours who had made Spanish churros!! YUMMM!), and running into NCCS’s wonderful school counselor and her kids, we went back to Brooke’s to put G to bed, only to realize that we had forgotten the Pack n Play! So G got to stay up, eating candy, chicken and stuffing (odd mix, but Brooke had made us dinner, so hey!) until we left at 9:30pm. Poor kiddo….he was so tired. He wasn’t necessarily falling apart though, which was good, just bursting into tears and using his cute lil pouty lip for just about everything…
Overall, I’d say there’s hope. This kid/trick or treating thing is a lot of fun! I have a feeling I’ll continue to look forward to this for years to come 🙂
Halloween, Maternity Style