Thursday, November 1, 2007

Halloween Wrap Up

Our Halloween setup
Originally uploaded by stepol

Our family always celebrates Halloween in a big way. We have four bins of decorations and two big bags full of pumpkins. We carve elaborate pumpkins and polMom puts together treat bags that combine candy and toys and have our name and address on them. It's usually a big event and this year was no exception.

Of course, this was yet another item on the ever-growing list of "first without CollegeGirl" entries. Our enthusiasm is tempered a little by her absence and we note little things like we don't have a pumpkin out carved by her. We miss her and would like to think she misses us a little too ... that is until we read her Facebook entries like "IT'S HALLLLLLOOOOOOOOWWWWWWWWEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEENNNNNNNNN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YYYYYYYYAAAAAAAYYYYYYYY!!!!!!! :) PS: The statues are da bomb!" and we realize we'll be lucky if she remembers she even has parents or siblings.

Well, enough melancholy. On with the Halloween recap. First let's talk about the pumpkins. In a previous post I talked about how last year we purchased foam pumpkins so we could reuse them year after year instead of trying to carve six or seven fresh pumpkins in the two hours before trick or treaters arrive. This worked remarkably well this year as we reused the five pumpkins we carved last year and added two more that YoungerSon and I carved this year. First time in a dozen years I haven't had to carve the very intricate Cavalier. We got the normal oohs and aahs from the neighbors which is always nice. Lots more UVa fans out this year it seemed.

The picture at the top gives you a little idea of our setup. We put up a shelter that we string with lights, ghosts, and spider webs. We setup a table and chairs underneath along with a stereo playing the Halloween mix CD we made (I'll include that in another post). This is "Halloween Central" for us and is where we meet and greet all the kids and neighbors.

It's also where we have "Frankie" which is just about the oldest Halloween prop we have and polMom's favorite. It's a battery-operated Frankenstein that dips a blower into bubble stuff and really blows bubbles. We gave him a place of honor this year in front of the shelter and rigged a flashlight up as a spotlight. Definitely the biggest hit with the kids both young and old.

Whoever had the house long ago when they were putting in the curbs opted out so we have a shallow ditch between the road and the yard and we always worry about kids tripping in it in the dark so this year we strung pumpkin and slime lights along the street to direct everyone to the driveway. It worked (mostly) and looked really cool from the street. That's something we'll have to add to the tradition list.

YoungerSon and OlderSon were dressed up as a playing card and a superhero. polMom had made two cards, and Ace of spades and a Ten of diamonds, so they could go together as Blackjack but OlderSon would have no part of it. He went upstairs and made aletter for his chest, found a cape-like substance, and put on fuzzy socks and flip flops. I have to say, howver, that it was better than a lot of the costumes we saw on older kids that night. A lot weren't even wearing a costume ... just regular street clothes. Oh well.

Tally for the end of the night was just over 200 kids which is a new record for us. I even had to run out to Walmart after one wave of about 40 kids in a five minute span. polMom had made 180 bags which we thought would see us through but it was not to be.

Now we're putting away all of the Halloween gear into its bins and will soon drive back to the storage place for another year.

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