Halloween 2013: Fear the Old Man

This Halloween had all the makings of being a total disaster. And by disaster I mean an earthquake/tornado/ epidemic/ health crisis/zombie apocalypse/accident-free, coming home to a roof over my head disaster, so…you know…not much of a disaster at all. But it did start with the potential to be an overall disappointment.  The morning started on the wrong foot when my husband consumed a massive quantity of the cake I had baked for a coworker’s birthday party that day:

“At least you know it tastes good!”

After withstanding verbal threats of violence and annulment (sort of kidding!), he claimed he had no idea it was not intended for his consumption, but we all know the Y chromosome is strongly associated with selective hearing disorder, and I knew better.  My amazing coworkers dressed as characters from “Grease” – homemade poodle skirts, “Pink Ladies” jackets and all (I did not snap a picture because I suck, but trust me – they were awesome!).  As highlighted in a previous post, I am not keen on dressing up for Halloween, and I am the pooper of all parties – but I managed to don an orange maternity shirt and the following pin (a kind parting gift from our last PA student):

I am a heaping pile of fun!

I am a heaping pile of fun!

Despite limiting my afternoon patient schedule, I didn’t get out of the office or home nearly as early I had hoped (WOE IS ME!).  Our initial plans fell through so I didn’t have anything planned for dinner (I should have warned you to grab some tissues for this doozy of a tragedy).  Our biggest detriment to a successful holiday, however, was the craptastic Michigan weather.  Granted it wasn’t freezing, but it was rainy and windy and damp and overcast and not ideal “let’s take our tiny child outside and walk around” conditions.  Sure last year it was more or less snowing, yet something about walking around in cold rain always, always seems worse than cold snow to a Michigander.  At least to this one.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, was the costume debacle.  Holding rank as the queen of procrastination, I gave myself minimal time to create/purchase a suitable ensemble and turned to Google for assistance.  While scanning through the results of a desperate well-thought-out search of “girl halloween costumes”, I was horrified by what I found:

When I’m trick-or-treating, I never know if I’ll get my favorite candy – or a communicable disease!

When I’m trick-or-treating, I never know if I’ll get my favorite candy – or a communicable disease!

What the…?  I don’t even understand what these girls are supposed to BE other than hussies.  Fish nets?  Hot-pink hooker boots?  Granted these costumes aren’t intended for the toddler for whom I was searching, but these “costumes” shouldn’t be intended for anybody other than dancers of the vertical pole variety.  Or college chicks.  It seems to be a  right-of-passage for many college girls to dress as a slutty something-or-other on Halloween.

ANYWAY, I decided to venture out on my own and found an absolutely adorable homemade red cape off Etsy.  [The Etsy shop was called MeetMehaffWay should you be in the market for a cute custom kid cape!] The cape was fitted perfectly to Hazel’s tiny stature and when it arrived in the mail, I tore open the package like a kid at Christmas and skipped over to have her try it on.

Failure.

Placing the hood over her head and loosely tying the knot, she started gagging and flailing and saying “No, mommy! Ow! Itchy!”  Obviously satin is known for being an uncomfortable and borderline tortuous material, but every night up until the big day I would nonchalantly try and slip it over her head to the same response.

The day before Halloween there was hope as she at least PLAYED with the cape, but apparently she was aiming to be more of a matador.   For a second I pondered if the grocery store or after-hours pharmacy would sell a tiny sparkly vest to complete the ensemble, but…probably not.

Ole!

Ole!

When Halloween finally rolled around and we pouted and fidgeted while we listened to the rain outside, we admired her use of an empty toy bucket to be “a adro-not!”  At Nathan’s prompting she would proclaim, “To the moon!” and sprint down the hall to inevitably (because she is her mother’s child) run into a wall or door jam or other blatant obstacle.

Probably won't hold up against space debris...

Probably won’t hold up against space debris…

Ultimately we decided to put on our big kid pants and give trick-or-treating a shot.  What was the worst that could happen?  Because of my aforementioned lack of planning for a nutritious meal, we needed to run into town for take-out anyway, and thought we would scope out the situation.

Although it failed to cease, the rain let up dramatically and as we pulled to a stop in a nice neighborhood, Hazel – miraculously – put the cape over her head and LEFT IT ON THE REST OF THE NIGHT.  I am still amazed.  With umbrella and Little Red Riding Hood in tow, we made our way through the streets.  From one house to the next, Hazel’s smile grew and she started talking more and more.  She threw out a couple “Trick or Treat!”’s, but usually after we had left the porch.  She carried her basket, smiling and singing along the way and you would never know she was the reluctant matador/astronaut just an hour before.

Despite our preemptive concern, Hazel was unfazed by even the scariest of Halloween decorations.  She seemed not to notice the ghosts, giant spiders, lawn corpses and grotesque masks of passerby.  What did terrify our youngster?  None other than:

I am what nightmares are made of.

I am what nightmares are made of.

What is more intimidating and terrifying than a kind-eyed, slow-moving, corrective lens-wearing, friendly elderly man handing out candy? Apparently nothing to our dear tot.  Fortunately, by the third home with a gentle geriatric matching the above description, Hazel pulled it together enough to stick out her basket, accept her sugary treat and sprint back to us before burying her head between our knees.  After the last house – once we were out of earshot, of course – she even yelled, “Thank you guy!”

Ultimately, we consider Halloween 2013 to be a success.  Although I strongly doubt she will have any recollection of her first legitimate trick-or-treating experience at her mere 23 months of age, Nathan and I will hold warm memories of the night for many years to come.  And now, the requisite, unabashed photo sharing of our too-cute-for-her-own-good offspring:

photo 2 photo 4 photo 1 photo 3 photo 5

…just don’t tell her we ate her candy.

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