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Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Halloweens Past and Present

Is it me or is Halloween rivaling Christmas in the decoration department? Outside lights, funky blowup creatures, spiderwebs draped across porches and shrubbery, not to mention plastic pumpkins and spooky treat bowls.

I remember the cardboard scarecrows, bats, and skeletons Mom would pull out of the closet each year, and we'd tape them to various doors in the house. And the weekend before Halloween, we'd pick out our pumpkins from either a pumpkin stand or as the case one year, the pumpkin patch, complete with hayride. We'd carve them a few nights later, and insert candles, enjoying the spookiness of our front porch.

Costumes have evolved as well. We have a bunny costume which my sister and I each wore, and now our children have worn, up to age four. At age 5, we wore a plastic Devil's costume. Age 6, witch. One year we were Donald Duck and Mickey Mouse. In years afterward, I was at one time or another, Miss America; Chewbacca; a Dallas Cowboy Cheerleader; a Jailbird; a Jedi Knight; and Aphrodite.

In college, I wore a mini-skirt and went as a punk rocker, complete with pink hair dye. I also wore my Prom gown and went as Scarlet O'Hara/Brett from North and South (although my boyfriend that year slipped up and wore Confederate gray instead of Union blue; I had to switch to Ashton)/Glenda the Good Witch.

And as an adult, I've been a vampire; a sexy witch; and a cowgirl. This year I'd love to be Lady Gaga, if I could fit into the costume or create my own. Otherwise, I'll be trying to squeeze into my cowgirl outfit again.

But even the costumes are getting elaborate. Wigs, makeup, entire stores carrying costumes and props

Here's a picture of our porch last year. I absolutely love our skull on a stick; we've named him Jose. He's motion-activated, and says about ten different phrases.

We also have a huge cauldron, filled with candy.
This year, we have three different colors of spiderwebs: white, black, and green.

What are some of your favorite Halloween memories? I always wished I could change costume and go around the neighborhood again, and get twice the amount of candy. And again, I was blessed with a mother who recognized one night of gorging ourselves on candy wouldn't kill us; if we chose to eat all our fun-sized Snickers, Milky Way, and Three Musketeer bars, then we wouldn't have any left for the next day. As we got older, we learned to ration our candy. For the next day, it all went into a common bowl, and was fair game for Mom and Dad to dip into. And it never failed; three days later, the only candy left in the bowl would be caramels, suckers, and Tootsie Rolls, plus the black and orange-wrapped 'mystery candy' nobody wanted.

When my dad worked for Frito-Lay, our house was popular because Dad brought home individual bags of Doritos, Ruffles, Cheetos, and Fritos. Now, I simply dole out the fun-sized candy bars.

What's your favorite Halloween candy? And do you go all out with the decorations?

BTW...Happy 47th anniversary Mom and Dad!


Tina Donahue said...

When I was a kid, the only decorations the neighbors had was toilet paper when the kids would tee-pee their yards. Ah, good times. :)

Molly Daniels said...

OMG...our house was T.P'd one year and my dad was furious! We only had one tree in the front yard, but of course, that was the year it rained...

Katalina Leon said...

I love Halloween! I decorate as much inside as out.
Hay rides at the local pumpkin patch are a must. My mother's birthday came around Halloween so we always had 'spooky' birthday parties for her.

Paris said...

We always had pumpkins at Halloween that my dad would carve faces into and some of them were pretty elaborate. My favorite Halloween treat had to be the popcorn balls that my great-grandma "Cookie" would make each year. I don't know what her secret was, but I've never tasted one as good!

Marianne Stephens said...

Give me chocolate...not just for Halloween! I loved Halloween as a child and enjoyed dressing my kids and taking them trick or treating. Now, I enjoy handing out goodies, especially to the little kids.

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