"When you called me to be a Mama, You didn't ask for perfection. But that with every breath, I'd point them to You."

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Memories of Halloween, 2014

I'm beginning this post in the Cedar Rapids airport, waiting to get on my plane to Dallas for another 48-hour whirlwind work trip. I love free Wi-Fi.

And I figured I'd better get on top of writing this one, as I'm afraid some of the memories will fade quickly if I don't jot them down while they're still fresh. Such is life these days. It seems we're constantly racing to the next thing, evidence of a busy family and a fulfilling life, but one that keeps us on our toes. It's funny though... I'm learning. I used to say, "I can't wait for things to slow down." But now I think it's finally starting to sink in. It's never going to slow down. We're parents. And we're professionals. And we're motivated and determined to live our life to the fullest. So... I've got my essential oils in my purse. Lavender for a mood lifter and restful sleep in my hotel room, Lemon for health and Balance for calm. And I'm embracing the crazy. I'm just praying that little baby niece of mine doesn't decide to make her appearance before my plane lands on Friday night! (Although Cassi is probably praying for the opposite). ;)

We made it through another Halloween, and I think the best part of Halloween is that when it's over, BAM. Christmas music and red Starbucks cups. I much prefer the latter. ;) But my kids... being the sweet and life-loving children they are... LOVE Halloween. Or maybe they just like the candy. At one point last week, I proposed to them that we skip the trick-or-treating and promised I would just go to the store and buy them a few bags of candy instead. They didn't go for it. ;) And that's okay... cuz gosh were they cute...

My memories of Halloween '14...

...they picked out their costumes months in advance. Brandon really wanted to wear a Superman cape and Jaden thinks Spiderman's mask is the coolest. So as soon as the costumes hit the Target racks, I snatched them up before their sizes were all sold out. Normally, I'm a last-minute costume buyer. Not this time. I was prepared.

...Brandon's preschool costume parade. I showed up at daycare with several of the other moms and enjoyed watching our littles parade through the church. It's crazy to me that this is the last year of preschool parades in our home. I have adored watching not only Brandon grow, but watching his friends grow, as well. That daycare is our village, and I'm sure going to miss all those kids when they all go their separate ways next fall.

...the actual adorning of the costumes on Halloween night. It was to be a cold one, and I insisted to the boys that they would have more fun and be able to get more candy if they were plenty warm enough. However, stuffing two and three layers under those thin costumes was more difficult than I had anticipated. They weren't happy with me for their thick under layers and I actually broke out in a sweat trying to get them stuffed with enough warmth! It was quite comical, and at one point I can remember saying, "Halloween is so stupid!"

...Papa Tim's scarecrow. This is SO Papa Tim... ;)

...Brandon in his cape. Watching him run from house to house, cape billowing behind him. He was the cutest little super hero, and that cape looked so cute around his little frame.

...Jaden's trick-or-treating skills. Or lack there of. He was SO excited and amped up the whole night that he would ring the door bells and shout "Trick or Treat!" before anyone even opened the door. We kept reminding him to wait until after someone answered, but he just could not contain it. Full steam ahead and a full-on sprint in between houses... that's how he does it.

...the group of neighbors in Papa and Nana's neighborhood. They were gearing up for a big Halloween party, and when we took the street, they were all in front of a house, taking a group picture. They called out to us to join them in their group shot, and there went Jaden, joining in as if he'd known them forever, when in truth... we had never seen them before at all! (Brandon... not so much). ;)

...our first time trick-or-treating with cousin Ella. The older these three get, the more fun they have together. It warmed my heart watching them.

...Brandon's gloves and Jaden's mask. The chief complaint when the kids get cold is usually their hands so I made sure to put gloves on them before they went out. However, Brandon struggled picking candy out of baskets and bowls with his gloves on, so it usually took him three times as long on the door steps to grab his candy than it did the other kids. And being the independent one that he is, he absolutely refused to let anyone pick up the candy for him. And Jaden's mask... that thing would not stay square on his face, and half the time we could really only see one of his eyes, but he would get so frustrated whenever we'd try to adjust it for him. When candy is involved... ain't nobody got time for mask adjustments! ;)

...the Halloween d├ęcor at many of the houses we stopped at. Apparently outdoor Halloween decorating is becoming a fad like Christmas. Who knew orange lights were so in these days?

...the aftermath. Three kids, three separate piles of candy, all scattered on a living room floor. Hotel Trannsylvania on the TV, adults surrounding the kitchen island, and frequent shouts of "NO more candy!"

We made it to the other side of Halloween. The sugar crash is over, and now the buzz of the real holiday spirit is in full force. I've got my Christmas cards designed, my shopping list almost done, and the other day when I picked Brandon up from daycare, he was adorned in Pilgrim clothes, vest and cape, and sitting in their classroom "Mayflower Ship" with Abigail in her white pilgrims hat. I tell you, if only I had had my camera with me...

So long Halloween... cue up Jingle Bells!