Thursday, October 30, 2014

My Love/Hate Relationship With Halloween

Halloween is a big deal for our family. Even though we only technically have one child who still falls within the socially accepted trick-or-treater age range, there will be five other fantastically costumed family members on the streets of this small town to accompany her. Last year we actually stopped traffic and the candy-grabbing was slowed as people asked to take pictures with the creepiest and best-dressed family in town.  (I'm so proud.)

Halloween flashback:
My youngest actually made a little kid cry!
Our family motto: "If people are gonna talk (and they are), we might as well give them something good to talk about."

Yes, my family will scare the crap out of your cute and innocent little Elsas and Captain Americas and mutant ninja turtles, but it's never too early to teach them that life is generally frightening and people are scary.  It's really kind of a public service we're performing.

It's fun for us to let all of our weirdness hang out for the public to see once a year, but there is a downside to taking Halloween so seriously.

I'm stressed.

The kids are stressed.

Which means I am even more stressed.

The oldest is frantically trying to put the finishing touches on his very ambitious costume (which involves stilts. STILTS!). No spoilers, but I'm hoping he can pull it off because it will be oh-so-very-awesome if he can.  We've made more than several runs to the home improvement store for materials (and will probably have to make several more).  And he's already sporting a few abrasions. But it's getting down to crunch time here and the anxiety is starting to rise.

Halloween flashback:
My oldest in his handmade Anubis costume
This afternoon, I'll be making a trip to the store for black tights, a roll of 4-inch gauze, and a large can of chocolate pudding... all essential ingredients to someone's costume. I'm hoping this will be the last shopping trip I have to make, but I'm not convinced it will be. Surely someone will have forgotten or lost or broken some crucial element of their costume. Here's to hoping it can be replaced with a common household object or repaired with duct tape.

And I've spent the past several days answering frantic questions like "Mom! Have you seen *insert obscure piece of clothing I haven't seen  in two whole years*?"

"Seriously, Mom! I need you to help me find it or HALLOWEEN WILL BE RUINED!"

Because I apparently know where EVERYTHING is.

And now it's the desperate demands for pumpkins to transform into frighteningly mediocre jack-o-lanterns.

Plus the purchase of suitable replacement candy for the trick-or-treated stuff that isn't allergy-friendly.

And I haven't even decorated the house... and probably won't have time. The real cobwebs are probably going to have to suffice which means my memory-making mommy skills will be forever ruined in the minds of my children.

You know what I'm looking forward to most? The post-Halloween festivities.  The ones that involve sleeping children and pilfered Halloween candy ("Sorry Honey, but don't you remember?  You don't even like Snickers bars.  It's okay, they're pretty horrible anyway") and a bottle of cheap wine.

I wonder what wine pairs best with fun size Snickers bars...

Heck.  It doesn't matter. As long as it's wine... or beer... or liquor... I'm not a picky person.

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