It was a glorious Halloween evening - mild temperatures, no one wore a jacket, and I stood on the front lawn in jeans and a light sweater taking pictures before we went out. Absolutely lovely, especially considering last year's trick-or-treat was in the rain.
So here they are.
Cowboys, Fairies, and Wonder Woman, Oh My!
I love Halloween, but it is quite the adventure trying to costume twenty appendages, curl and adorn three heads of hair, tie shoelaces, tweak wings, and sew on extra tulle. Thankfully, Doug made it home just in time to wrangle the cowboys into their chaps.
And I mean wrangle. We couldn't keep the boys dressed for more than thirty seconds before they peeled their velcro apart, shed their vests, and ditched the hats.
But the evening held two miracles. Here's the first.
Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid kept their costumes on the whole night!
Spencer (aka Butch) is wearing the cowboy costume Eliza wore when she was two. But finding a second cowboy outfit that looked similar was a challenge. I kept striking out. So my cute sister Deb stepped in.
"Let me see the vest and chaps," she said, fingering the seams, examining the velcro belt. "I can make these for you. Easy. I have leather and felt and some faux suede at home."
Deb's amazing. You will never hear me say I can make anything for you easily. Ever. (Unless it's mac and cheese or cinnamon toast.)
One week later, my mom brought over Gordon's costume. It was beautifully made - complete with fringe and a silver sheriff's star. So darling. Even if we did make the boys wear their chaps backwards so they wouldn't undo the belts.
With a little bribing (a blow-pop) we talked the kids into smooshing together for a few more pictures. Here's The Sundance Kid, eyes a twinkle over the prospect of more candy.
Purple Plum Fairy and Sunshine Blossom Fairy (they named themselves).
I would have loved some wings like this when I was little.
The girls flitted across the lawn, waved their wands and kicked leaves. I looked on wistful for just a few seconds as Ali danced and twirled and fluffed the tulle on her skirt.
It's so fun to feel pretty.
Sami chose some smaller rainbow wings for her preschool program and larger pink wings for Halloween night.
My favorite accessory? The glittered Converse.
And last but not least...
Deb made this costume as well. She made it for her own daughter last year then added gold trim to lengthen the skirt for Eliza.
I think she did Lynda Carter proud. Don't you?
This is Eliza jumping over a three-car pile-up and lighting like a cat on the other side. Remember the "Wonder Jump?"
We watched a few YouTube clips of Wonder Woman so Eliza could comprehend the coolness of this seventies icon. Here's my favorite mix. And get this. I was digging Wonder Woman's pedestrian clothes! I guess style does come full circle. Watch her spin transformations here, unless you get motion sickness.
Gold wrist bands to deflect bullets. (One of which I lost Sunday night and was frantically trying to find. As if Wonder Woman couldn't trick-or-treat without a wristband.) And of course, you gotta love the boots.
Bribing the boys to stand in one place was laughable so I gave the camera a rest, we put the boys into the stroller... and the girls were off!
Look at those trees! The whole neighborhood was turning golden, leaves gently drifting to the ground. It was a magical October evening with sweet light reflecting off the mountains and window panes, jack-o-lanterns glowing from front porches.
We met up with some of the neighborhood families for a picture. I love these kids.
And then it was on to the first doorstep, the first knock, and the first shout of "trick-or-treat!"
You can see the energy in their faces. It was circling thick, floating us through the streets.
The Sundance Kid refused to part with his candies, clutched them tightly in both hands until they must have ached and he couldn't hold any more. We told him to put them in his treat bag for later, but he wanted none of that. So on he trudged, white-knuckling his hoard of sugar.
But this here? This was the second miracle of the night. The moment when Gordy released his candy into his tote, only to realize his fingers were now free to handle more loot. No small victory!
This picture makes me laugh, with Sam's headband falling across her face, but I had to include it because it's Miss Marion's house and she bubble wraps her stairs. Yes, I said bubble wrap. Complete with scary music, smoke machines and flying bats. How awesome is that?
I hope we left some popping for the other kids. Jumping down stairs that crackle and bang is way too fun!
We ate hot dogs at Robert and Susie's, scones at Kim and John's, donuts and root beer at Rebecca and Jason's. I love our neighborhood. I love the safe, happy feeling as we ring doorbells and hug people we care about. I love the generosity, the good parents, and all the sweet children.
My favorite memories from the night? Spencer lounging in the double stroller while putting down his second hot dog, our two cowboys swaggering up to each doorstep, Sami holding my hand and asking me to skip down the hill with her, carrying Eliza piggy-back up the last leg of our route.
To quote Garrison Keillor, a favorite voice of ours, "Nothing you do for a child is ever wasted."
Every costume sewn, every skip down the street, every smile shared? Never wasted. (Thanks Deb.)
That said, I had a good chuckle over my friend Saydi's approach this year. Visit her blog for a laugh and a dose of healthy perspective. Nothing wrong with a little "do-it-yourself" attitude.
Here's hoping your Halloween was a happy one!