I took a few days off from pretty much everything except my children, my husband, and that darn 2,000 word article. It was lovely. I feel so much better and I no longer fantasize (much) about JP and me quitting our jobs and traveling the country with our two children in a beat up Winnebago (or anything else that is the polar opposite of our life now). Perspective, sleep, a pedicure, and a large amount of candy corn--and four straight days with only brief separations from my children-- and I'm much better.
It already feels like a lifetime ago, but it would be a blogging travesty not to update my riveting Halloween coverage with pictures from the actual Halloween day costume parade and trick-or-treating experience.
First up, the daycare party and parade. Claire morphed into an mad little hornet and yelled at anyone who told her she looked adorable in her tutu.
Landon had fun, but was really just holding out for the evening trick-or-treating. For the first time, he remembered the year before and he knew it was going to be AWESOME. He checked with me about six times to make sure he was allowed to have TWO pieces of candy after trick-or-treating, and then after making sure of his future good fortune, spent the rest of the afternoon reminding me that I'd told him he could have two pieces of candy after trick-or-treating.
We spent the afternoon of cooking, cleaning, dancing, and napping, before our good friends came over to eat dinner and trick-or-treat around our kid-friendly, conveniently circular neighborhood. I made chili, and because we're fancy, the kids ate Halloween shaped macaroni and cheese without any vegetable side dish. We attempted to herd the children for a group picture, but ended up with a series of kind of awesome outtakes. Finally, at 6:30, we headed out with our wagon, our glow sticks, and our adult beverages.
The picture above notwithstanding, Claire was a very happy bee. And Landon (who has generally stopped letting me take pictures of him, which is why I had to include the one above) was SO excited to show the two younger girls the ropes of trick-or-treating. Everyone thinks this about their kid - and everyone should - but Landon really is a special little 4-year-old. When our friend's 3-year-old daughter walked in the door, Landon couldn't wait to show her his toys and even tried to send her home with a few. He wants everyone to be happy and safe and he made the girls' positive trick-or-treating experience his own personal responsibility. He spent the whole night using his sugary sweet high-pitched I'm-talking-to-a-baby voice saying things like, "Okay, this house has its lights on! We can trick-or-treat here!" and "oooh did you get a good piece of candy?!" and "See that house? We're going there next okay?!" Cracked us up.
Despite Landon's tutelage, Claire was bemused by the whole process. She would carefully select a piece of candy only to put it right back in the person's bowl before turning around and leaving. She also kept trying to walk in the person's house and was continually surprised when they didn't let her in.
But she did insist in going to the front door of EVERY house, generally 30 seconds after Landon and E had finished and were ready to move on.
She also insisted on taking her OWN path to that front door. A path that usually lead her over grass, bushes, and drought-killed flower beds.
She also communed with lawn decor, giving these flamingo skeletons a bat just before punching them in the head. Repeatedly.
She never rode in the wagon we brought, preferring instead to push it from the back or tromp through people's yards. At one point I lost sight of her between houses, only to spot her between some bushes in an unlit side yard, attempting to climb up the gated side of someone's porch. As our friend said with a laugh about halfway through our journey, she's a character.
The kids had a blast and we adults had a lot of fun ourselves. There's something so happy about Halloween- at least at this age. Before the slutty costumes (oh ugh) and the I'm-too-old-to-trick-or-treat-but-I-put-on-a-mask-give-me-candy thing, there's just this magical night where the kids are running ahead of the laughing group of picture-taking adults and half of the fun is that it's past their bedtimes and getting the candy is as exciting as eating it. I had so many flashbacks to my childhood, running around a similar circle of houses where we knew all the neighbors, with the dads and their beer wagon and the giant post-treating candy exchange on our living room floor at the end of the night, and it just made me happy.
It was a good time and I'm looking forward to next year just as much as our resident super hero.
I'm sure Claire is looking forward to it too, but mostly she just wants you to go get her milk.
Happy belated Halloween everyone.