halloween was different this year, not just because we are living in a new place, but because diana is in school. in years past, she and i spent countless hours planning and preparing for this day of days, her favorite holiday. it's changed, though, and it took a while to get my head around that, mourning the loss of old traditions while simultaneously gathering excitement about new ones.
as per usual, diana started decorating her room around the time of the autumnal equinox when i pulled out the trusty rubbermaid bins full of holiday doo-dads. she placed cobwebs over the bed, a giant spider on the floor lamp, and an actual skeleton in her closet, among other things. she does take some things quite literally.
|she added a bit to one of her gravestone settings this year, giving it the perspective of shadow.|
our first opportunity to show off costumes was on the saturday prior. our neighborhood held a small party for the kids in the afternoon with plenty of yummy treats and a parade on the streets. steve had just finished ander's requested costume of burn-e (it took about a week to make) and ander was quite pleased to see how good it looked. if you don't know who burn-e is, well, just watch this:
|he's got the welder taped to his arm and is holding a replacement light spire, both of which would glow in the dark|
diana had changed her mind about her costume a multitude of times. first, she was going to be a poisonous vampire toadstool. that one involved a clear plastic umbrella. after some work on it, she gave it up in favor of scarlett. this was a character of diana's own imagination, whom she described as the daughter of lord voldemort. i particularly loved this idea, especially all the details she put into it with horcruxes and a black wig and a green-and-black gown and a snake wrapped around her arm and all. but, she decided upon another harry potter character, a little-known-and-only-once-mentioned-in-the-epilogue-of-book-7 young woman named victoire, the daughter of bill weasley and fleur delacour. diana accurately guessed that no one would quickly determine her identity, so she wore a name tag. i think the biggest appeal about this costume for her was the use of eye shadow and lipstick for the first time.
|she used the last name delacour, thinking that it seemed more fitting for a daughter to have the surname of her mother rather than that of her father. it also sounded prettier than weasely.|
|our party hostess really got her hands into things. bwahahahaha!|
|the 4th dr. who, merida, victoire, and burn-e|
|pondering what else to add to his rendition of "halloween on mars"|
we had one trip to a pumpkin patch here, mainly owing to the much greater distance to get to you-pick fields as compared to what we experienced in california. it more than satisfied our needs, though, as we had just the right fodder for the kids' imaginations. ander had been asking nearly every day when it would be time to carve his pumpkin. monday afternoon, off early from school, was the perfect time.
|as expected, ander was more excited about telling me how to scoop out the goopy insides instead of doing it himself. diana, however, amazed us both with how much she emptied her own.|
|when he draws jack o'lantern faces on paper, it's often with triangles. not so with actual pumpkins. i momentarily panicked until i remembered my trusty corer tool from the pampered chef.|
|we had some artistic disagreements about the mouth, but i was able to provide ander with something that ultimately met with his approval. the pumpkin was named "mr. musician head"|
|in carving, as in sewing, it's best to measure twice and cut once...|
|...or just make the best of the missing fangs and turn it into "the-pumpkin-which-must-not-be-named"|
for the actual trick-or-treat night, the kids changed up their costumes. diana abandoned victoire and decided to be fleur instead, since it was getting too confusing to explain to people. taryn came over to gather candy with us, and steve headed out with the girls to meet up with another family while ander helped me set out luminaries. ander did not care to be burn-e, as he had "already" been that. he asked to be "lord vampire" but when we headed to the costume closet, he decided to be a ghost instead. fortunately, he made out much better with his treat collecting than did charlie brown's character. (both of the kids watched "it's the great pumpkin, charlie brown" in school on halloween and came home talking excitedly of rocks. also, i love how ander refers to to "charles" brown. he's charmingly formal.)
|fleur and minion|
|much cuter than casper|
after he saw the contents of his sister's bucket, though, he reconsidered facing his concerns. when she said she intended to collect more, he asked to come along, this time as a king with a royal robe. he was much more comfortable with "his girls" by his side and he eagerly pointed out to us all the jack-o-lanterns he admired.
|this might be my favorite photo of the evening. she really did help him so much.|
life is good.