-Just one question. Of all the days, of all the weeks, WHY did my kids (all three of them) feel that today was the day to arise at 5:00 in the morning? I mean, I threw a birthday party this week, I made costumes and helped out in the class room this week, I even put on a cooking demonstration for church this week. Plus I fed everyone, kept the house from complete chaos (I won't say it was actually clean), and did the laundry. My reward? Good morning, Mommy! It's Halloween! Heaven help me.
It did give me a bit of happy flashback of getting up at 5 a.m. on Halloween morning in years past, not due to my children but due to my mother. Most of you know that my mother is the sweetest person on the planet. Such a good heart. Well, everyone has their dark side, their wicked little ways they keep to themselves. My mom has only one, and that is to get nasty on Halloween. She hasn't done it much in recent years, but when I was in high school and had some stage-makeup training she was teaching at West High and then Rowland Hall. We'd have a little 5 a.m. date every year for me to do something horrible to her. Werewolves, witches...that was just the beginning. One year she was the Bride of Frankenstein - I made these latex lacerations with stitches in them that we put running up the side of her mouth and wrapped around her neck. One year she was a basement lady - we glued bugs coming out of her hair, wounds in her face, and one coming out of her mouth. See? Truly a dark side. The best ever was the year I painted her up in full skeleton makeup. She donned a LONG red cape, skeleton hands, streaming black hair and a scythe. The kicker? Painters stilts that made her seven feet tall. She scared the crap out of me, then every one at West High, and, feeling that her job wasn't yet done, went to my dad's work up at the University and stalked around campus handing out heart attacks. It was awesome. Even in the years after she stopped working at a school she just couldn't resist. A couple of years ago I took little Stomper to her house to show off his costume and to trick-or-treat up and down their street. Mom just couldn't stop herself. The next thing I knew she had donned this terrific Troll costume she has and as Stomper and I tricked and treated I caught glimpses of her literally scampering to and fro across the street scaring kids and spreading Halloween cheer.
I must admit that my costume efforts this year for the kids fit under the category of "another lesson learned." Don't you hate that? I mean, I thought I was being pretty smart. First of all, I listened to the kids, over the past 11 1/2 months, recite to me the myriad costume ideas they had. "Mom! This year I want to be Wolverine! I mean Venom! I mean a pirate!" So I gave them a lock-down date. You must choose your costume by October 10. Great. Stomper picked (never heard this one the whole year) a werewolf. (No, he didn't see the picture of my mom when he decided.) Bitty picked a scary black cat. (She is unable to say this without simultaneously flexing her claws.) Great. I then took Bitty WITH ME to the costume store because I knew that whatever I picked would not be okay. So I purposefully had her pick out her ears, tail, fangs and claws. I then chose a multitude of werewolf type items to please Stomper.
You know what happened, of course. As we've been putting things together over the past few days for class parties and school carnivals and such, Bitty has refused to wear the ears on the grounds that "they just can't be straight."The fangs went before the ears did. The claws have largely been rejected as well, though I think they'll make a comeback tonight for trick-or-treating seeing as how the claws are attached to gloves. As far as Stomper is concerned, I think I doubled what I actually needed to make him into a decent werewolf. I had all sorts of intricate plans and costume pieces but it all came down to me, the kitchen table, 1/2 a yard of furry material, a glue gun and a stapler. Yes. I stapled Stomper's costume together. Probably not the best idea as far as longevity goes, but it was quick and easy, just in time for the school carnival.
The school carnival. I'll say one thing. Next year we're doing something else. Enough said.
I think my favorite part of Halloween, once all the costuming and candy-purchasing and pumpkin carving has been taken care of, is seeing the kids all decked out in their garb. I love it when they get so excited that they kind of get into character. I was a little afraid that Stomper would scare himself, but he just loved being a werewolf and was disappointed that the moon wasn't full so he couldn't howl at it. I wasn't sure if I sure tell him that he could howl whenever he wanted or to just agree and enjoy the quiet. Aw, it's Halloween. Howl away, my boy!