Sunday, October 31, 2010

A Few Things on Halloween (with bonus videos!)

Not that this comes as a surprise, but Halloween is a big deal in the little kid world. I think the schools are just so happy to have a holiday without any religious conflict (arguably.) I'm not crazy about the holiday myself, but have a reasonable tolerance for its milder side - pumpkins, costumes, and candy. When things get gory, creepy or overly spooky I turn off.

Like my neighbor, who has some kind of zombie chainsaw massacre all set up in his front yard, and which we have to pass walking to and from school each day. Thanks, man. Luckily the girls don't even notice it anymore, due to another neighbor on the walk who has a giant inflatable black cat in their yard - seriously, it is as tall as the house - with sharp teeth, red eyes, and yellow claws. When the wind blows, as it often does in October, the cat looks alive, like it is about to pounce on us, and even I am freaked out. Ginger named it Scary Skip. Again, thanks man.

But mostly it has been a fun couple of weeks. As mentioned in the last post, there was the church party - a simple way to have some fun and see everyone's costumes. Here's the pumpkin we (Ed) carved. We put a rainbow clown wig on it and won "Silliest" in the contest. I spent some time trying to come up with a great couples costume for me and Ed, but most retail adult costumes are hoochie, and I didn't have time to make something, so togas was a default. I want to think of something better, but still easy, for next year. Suggestions? I have more to say on costumes further down.
Friday was really the BIG DAY for us because both girls had school parties, and had to take their costumes. Friday morning we took Hazel to school, came home, and Ed took Ginger to her school while Poppy and I walked back to Hazel's school. We sat in her classroom while they sang us the cute songs they've been learning. Then the moms left and spread out around the block and waited while all four kindergarten classes paraded by in their costumes. So cute. They all had plastic bags and we handed them candy as they went by. It's hard to hand out candy and take pictures but I managed a few. Poppy was a trooper, as it was the first truly chilly day we've had this fall.Then we hustled home, fed and changed Poppy, and headed over to the preschool for Ginger's thing. Parents gathered in the gym and the classes filed in and sat in the middle, facing parents. The music teacher - a gem among gems in enthusiasm - led the kiddos in a Halloween sing-along showcasing all the songs they've been learning this month. I have got to get the playlist; some were fantastic and most I'd never heard before. Then the parents - this time I was toting my 20-pounder asleep in her carseat - went outside and lined up along the sidewalk, again awaiting the costume parade. Here is the music teacher. In case you're wondering, she is "Five Little Pumpkins Sitting on a Gate" (which Ginger sings below.)That afternoon I recorded the girls each singing one of their songs.

Friday night was the PTA Halloween party at Hazel's school. Ed took the older girls. They were tired of their costumes so they just delved into the dress-ups and wore whatever. This, to be precise: While they were gone, I bought myself a few precious minutes to unload the dishwasher by sticking cups on Poppy's feet.And finally, tonight they are having a blast handing out candy and pretzels to the trick-or-treaters that come to our door. Again, dressed up from the dress-up bin. That rainbow wig gets around. Honestly, I think passing out is as much - or more - fun for them, especially when they see kids they know.

I know this post is like, forever because of all the pictures and I ramble, but a final word on costumes. They are hard for the uncreative! My mom gets all the credit for Queen Hazel and Mary Poppins - she bought their dresses and Ginger's hat at Unique (best thrift store ever), and sewed Hazel's cape and Ginger's red waist thingy. I think the best costumes I saw this year were:
Baby - Yoda
Kid - Cookie Monster and a Peacock (two different costumes)
Family - Star Wars crew
Couple - Dorothy and Scarecrow

The costumes I hate the most are muscle-y Transformer-y things, and I'm not just saying that because I don't have boys. I am equally sick to death of all princess-fairy blah-blah-blah costumes. We walked a fine line this year with the Queen but next year I will think and plan way ahead, planting seeds deep and offering way different options. I am not creative, but others are and the internet is a wealth of help if I just take the time.

So how did Halloween go for you? What were the best costumes you saw? Any serious candy meltdowns? How about unusual events or traditions? It was a good year. I actually wish it was on Sunday more often.


Cat M Johnson said...

ivy was baby yoda :-)

tona said...

we were submitting college apps this week (!) so we did about ZERO on costume prep but it all came together magically on Saturday, the day of our ward Trunk or Treat. Jacob bought the fun-run pack from the Office. Halle was a Greek goddess - looked a lot like you, Kari! Forrest wore a white lab coat & a stethoscope for a doctor. We went thrifting that morning and found bellbottom jeans, a psychedelic shirt & blue-tinted sunglasses for a hippe (plus he needs a haircut so he was totally channeling Greg Brady). Don and I went as Danny and Sandy from Grease. Don slicked his hair back, painted on sideburns, wore black T-shirt with sleeves rolled, black jeans, black oxfords and white socks. He looked awesome. I found a big wide skirt and made a poodle from sticky craft felt, had a chiffon scarf & a fake ponytail.

But decorating the car - we couldn't think of anything and didn't want it to be lame. At the last minute in the craft store we decided (standing there surrounded by pre-Christmas hooha) that we would do Christmas. We put tons of light strings on the car, hung a wreath, put out our big stuffed Santa, hung our stocking, made a playlist of cheesy Christmas songs, threw tinsel threads all over everything and handed out candy canes. The little kids loved it since it wasn't scary, and everyone cracked up walking past because it was so oddball. Fun!

tona said...

Oh - the hippie was Thompson in case you couldn't tell. Photos coming on the Myfamily site.

Nells-Bells said...

our kid's costumes weren't anything too out of the ordinary: a skeleton and a fairy. how original, i know. ;) but they had so much fun. i saw a couple of people as the red queen this year. one lady went all out and truly looked amazing. i like the five pumpkins sitting on a fence idea. too cute! being pregnant this year i totally copped out and wore a jack-o-lantern apron i have. p.s. i wish i was your neighbor and got a fall goody plate. YUM!!!!

-Sydney- said...

A couple in our ward dressed up as a priest and a nun. . .then swapped costumes about halfway through the trunk-or-treat. I think some people were offended but I thought it was pretty funny :)

The most adorable baby costume I saw was a little newborn football.

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