Just today and tomorrow, then I’ll quit bugging you. Luke is currently in SECOND place!!! We are so grateful for all your votes. I have no doubt he’s well over 1,000 votes. WOW!
Halloween is a funny time of year. I think there are really two camps of people. Those who love Halloween – the good, clean, fun version. And, those who love Halloween – the gore, scariness and dark side of the holiday. I have several friends who opt not to celebrate this holiday and either skip it altogether or focus on All Saints’ Day (tomorrow). Each family does their own thing and we’ve chosen to do a mix of the two. So, how do we do it?
1. The kids dress up, but within reason. Growing up, my costumes were always fun and creative – Raggedy Ann, Hobo, Princess Laia. You know, normal 80s kids stuff. We’ve had pigs, football players, doctors, bees, dogs, superheros, Harry Potter, ladybugs and the like. You won’t find any bloody vampires, zombies or morally offensive characters at our house. It’s just not who we are.
2. A few years ago, we stopped passing out candy and instead give out pencils, popcorn or pretzels. The average American consumes 24 pounds of candy a year (hello sugar) and while I’m the first to grab a Reese’s peanut butter cup if it’s in the house, we’ve decided to help parents out a little and give the kids something fun or nutritious.
3. Speaking of candy, we’ve always struggled with what to do with All. That. Candy. It just keeps coming – the parties at school, then Christmas, then Valentine’s, then Easter. ARG! When you have that much candy flowing in x5, we had to find something to do with it all. Enter two amazing candy options. At Halloween, our dentist’s office collects candy for the troops and for every pound you bring in, you get $1. Last year’s haul? $10 bucks. We let the kids choose 20 pieces of candy and the rest with to Dr. Zatopek. If you live in Austin, take your leftovers to Advanced Dental Care off McNeil and 183. You can thank me later. Second option is Mobile Loaves & Fishes. They, too, collect candy and they do it all year-round and they have affiliates in six different cities around the country.
4. For costumes, I have quite the stockpile. This is our 11th Halloween with kids, after all. Some costumes I bought on eBay, some at garage sales, some we borrowed and some from PB Kids after-Halloween sale. I’ve even swapped with friends. There are so many options. No need to go broke. Get creative!
5. This is when I love the fact my kids go to Catholic school. On November 1, the school celebrates All Saints Day, typically with a saint parade and a rousing rendition of “When the Saints Go Marching In.” It’s awesome. Tonight is really All Hallow’s Eve as we prepare our hearts for All Saints Day tomorrow and All Souls Day on November 2. November is all about remembering the faithfully departed and the many saints who have walked before and with us! We try hard to keep the focus there.
6. For the last eight years, we’ve enjoyed trick or treating with our sweet neighbors, first in Pflugerville, now in Austin. What a gift! As we walk the blocks, knock on doors and shout out “trick or treat” I’m reminded that God has placed us in an awesome neighborhood. We know so many of those faces. It is, indeed, a community event and I LOVE that. We even make time to swing by the sisters’ convent. Where else can you get candy AND a saint medal?
Whatever YOUR family chooses to do, make it purposeful. Make it meaningful. Make it fun. Happy Halloween y’all!
The day we brought Luke home from the NICU. Holla!! Oh, and you do NOT want to see our horrific attempt at “costumes” that year.
Aunt Amanda and Uncle Daniel pre Ava!
I know there are more photos, but I’ll post another time. Go trick or treating!