Thursday, October 30, 2008

Happy Halloween (2008)!

With each holiday comes a set of things parents must do, things expected, things greatly anticipated. Christmas, of course, is the big one, the one that, if you buy into it the way merchants want you to, can devour a month or more of your busy life. Everywhere you turn, there are Christmas--excuse me--"holiday" decorations. I saw them in a Wegman's grocery store in Jamestown, New York in the third week of October. And there was this strangely ambiguous placard right next to the huge pyramid of Christmas trees. It said something like, "Some shoppers shop ahead and others prefer to wait until closer to the holidays to do their shopping. By placing these decorations out, we are allowing you to make your own choice."

Oh. Gee. Thanks for allowing me to make my own choice. And by the way, your dopey Thankoweenmas decorations bum me out.

Mama. Take a picture of me like this (poses).

I like Halloween. It comes with its own set of expectations, sure, and there's some parental stress, but it's vastly less of an exercise than Christmas. I like it especially because it's Liam's self-professed "favorite day of the year." That's enough for me, even if I didn't already like ghouls and witches, haints and jack-o-lanterns.

Because I was in Jamestown for trick-or-treat, Bill promised the kids we'd carve pumpkins the night before I had to leave. My part was getting the kids' costumes squared away. I am not a tinfoil robot-making kind of mother. I can paint faces like nobody's bidness, but I am not hand-sewing the Medusa costume, if you get my drift. I happily, nay, gleefully, spend my $20-40 rocks on store-bought costumes, dress 'em up with crazy wigs or fabulous face paint, and relax about it. Store-bought costumes are good, store-bought costumes are great; they are enough.

And so BOTB dug into the punkins, with the kids designing the faces and hanging over him and
me behind the camera.My sweet little artists.
not yet perfectionists, but darn close.
Can you carve this, Daddy?
I'll try. To make a jack-o-lantern, you have to stick a knife in the pumpkin. It's the way of the world, kid.
Having strong arms, he did the guts removal in record time.
The obligatory vomiting-pumpkin-guts photo.
My son as a dog: Mmmm. The lid smells good.
Ah, but does it fit back on the jack-o-lantern?
Liam's creation, made flesh by the Father.
The glorious end result. They're flickering outside on the patio each night.
Yes, that is supposed to be Chet Baker, and yes, we know it turned out more like a pig. Too bad there are no decent artists in this family. Happy Thankoweenmas!

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