WHEW IT'S OVER AND I MADE IT.
I've been looking forward to Monday, November 3rd for a few weeks now, knowing that by this date, all the wonderful schedule-packing, late-night-inducing work would be done. It's really not worth making list of it all, but I'm kind of tempted just to remember how it all fit in. Then again, at this point I'm pretty much just ready to move on and go to bed.
Now my job is to get blogging and capture a few of October's highlights. Shall we start with how it ended? Halloween!
Something that I both love and dread about my children's relationship with Halloween is that they each seem to see it as a time for them to truly transform into some character they've always wanted to be. Never do they choose to dress up as any sort of generic or classic Halloween character such as "A Cowgirl" or "A Fireman." Oh how I'd love that. Then again, if they did, I'd miss their ravenous excitement over transforming themselves into a character they've dreamed of and just really thoroughly imagined becoming.
This year Stomper renewed his respect and awe for The Cap. You know, Captain America. He was Steve Rogers for Halloween in fourth grade as well, and that year I had a much younger Skippidy who didn't let me work on costumes so much during the day, so I have clear memories of staying up until about 3:00 am one night sewing cut-up t-shirts together to create his Captain America shirt. (No store-bought polyester jumpsuits with printed muscles for this kid.) This year he wanted his costume to reflect The Cap's updated look from the new movie which came out in the spring. This was happy for me because the new costume bore no sewing-nightmare red and white stripes, just a dark shirt with a few designs. Now, this didn't mean that I was able to save myself from sewing late into the wee hours but it wasn't quite so challenging. Of course, literally on the day I finished his shirt, the new trailer for the next Avengers movie came out and what did I see? Captain America with a red-and-white-striped torso again. DOH!! I had to tell Stomper that it was too late, I could not keep up with The Cap's costume changes. No stripes.
I was laughing as I joked with a friend about how nutty we moms can be by dreaming up costumes and sacrificing sanity, sleep and our general health to put them together. What got really funny though was when I saw on Halloween that the challenge I took on was pretty much sewing a silver star on my son's t-shirt, while the challenge she was referring to was turning her entire family into the cast of How To Train Your Dragon - amazing costumes. Not for the beginner seamstress like myself. All I could do was a star, but you know what, I did it and that makes me awesome.
|Only 5/7ths of the costumes are depicted here - one daughter is missing, plus my friend also has a costume for herself to transform into a Viking Queen. Like I said, amazing|
Speaking of awesome...Bitty. She is like my mom. She just adores taking on the worst villain she can think of every Halloween. A Dementor, Bellatrix LeStrange.... This year? Mystique of X-Men fame. She's really horrid and mean. Oh yeah, and also...she's blue. All blue. And in the movies is basically just naked. I had concerns. Bitty let me know that there's a cartoon in which Mystique wears a white dress over all her blueness so I googled "Mystique" to get a good look at what I was up against. A word of caution: it's not a good idea to google female comic book characters while your children are near. Woweee!! Mystique is one minxy woman and my children are not allowed to have any comic books ever. But since she's only familiar with the character through a cartoon tv show adjusted more for children, I let her go ahead and dream away. Yes, I turned my daughter blue for Halloween.
Skippidy's costume was my dream costume this year. She has this pair of ruby slippers - just mary janes with lots of glitter attached. It's actually her third pair and she wears them almost every single day, no matter what else she is wearing. Even this morning she wore them over hot pink ankle socks and with a black and white zebra-striped skirt. I am not in charge of her wardrobe. Anyway, I couldn't have been more thrilled that Skippidy took my subtle hints that she would make the perfect Dorothy this year. All I had to say was that she could wear her ruby slippers and she was sold. I quickly found her a $7 Dorothy dress at Kid-to-Kid and crossed my fingers that she wouldn't change her mind the day before Halloween. I was actually pretty surprised that she never wavered from her decision to dress as Dorothy, and I thought she looked completely adorable. Phew. Easiest costume ever.
Our school holds a Halloween carnival every year, and it's always scheduled for the Friday before Halloween. Well guess what. This year Halloween was actually on a Friday. This meant that the carnival was a full week before the actual holiday. I don't think I've ever had costumes done so early before, and it created a bit of stress for me trying to get everything done by the 24th. Not to mention that my sweet hubby was going to be gone all that week plus Stomper had a birthday party the next day.... but that's for the next post.
Because it was such a completely busy week, and Troy was gone...I totally forgot about carving our pumpkins! We went to all the trouble of growing them (which consisted not of us planting them but merely not cutting down the vines that grew there on their own) and then I almost forgot to turn them into jack-o-lanterns! So at 8:00 p.m. on Thursday night, I halted Bitty from her homework (which was finished in tears the next morning at breakfast....great week, seriously) and we trotted outside to pick pumpkins off the porch. I don't think we've ever had such a fast carving session but the kids didn't care. As always they were absolutely giddy as they designed and scooped and carved. Happily Stomper and Bitty are getting big enough to do some of that themselves so it was a little easier.
|Skipped said she was making a Wicked Witch to go with Dorothy - she drew the face all by herself and I just couldn't love it any more than I do. It kind of looks like a crying snowman.|
|Bitty and Stomper had fun exploring 3D ears and fangs|
Despite the pressure created by having an early carnival, having actual Halloween on a Friday was heaven on earth for me - we weren't worried about bed times, we had some time after school to hang out and get real snacks and take some time to get dressed. Loved that. Then we did as we always do and started our evening with Troy's parents. We love our tradition of the Grandparent-Halloween-Kick-Off each year, stopping by a few of the houses on their circle. I can't believe that I literally see those neighbors just once a year. It makes Halloween feel like it comes around more often than it does.
After visiting the same four houses we do every year, we hugged Grandma and Grandpa and zoomed back to our neighborhood for dinner with friends and then we hit the streets. What a perfect Halloween night it was. I don't think we've had such a warm Halloween pretty much ever. I'm so used to worrying about dressing the kids in layers and their toes getting cold and bringing gloves that it was a little disorienting to just be strolling around in nothing but long sleeves and enjoying the wonderful avenues which were absolutely packed with hoards of costumed trick-or-treaters. We enjoyed the company of dear friends and especially loved our stop at this house that has build the most charming fairy village in their garden I have ever seen.
Ironically, everyone was completely worn out by about 7:45. With all the blessing of a non-school night preceded by long empty afternoon, you would think we would have pounded the streets a little longer but I was only too happy to get home and begin to sponge off my children and tuck them into bed after another wonderful Halloween
Well, that was supposed to be about three different blog posts. Oh well.