Thursday, October 31, 2013

Our Halloween













Another Halloween in the books! We had such a nice time. The small Bears were bouncing off the walls for the past couple of days, with Halloween activities at school and the buildup to the big night. We carved our pumpkin on Wednesday night; when I say "we," I mean my husband and children because I don't enjoy carving pumpkins. I'm not very good at it, for one thing, and I can't stand the smell. I cooked dinner while they carved. The small Bears opted for objects instead of a jack o'lantern face; between them, they asked for an owl, a moon and a mouse. The Bear encountered some difficulty with the mouse and owl, but we ended up with a really distinctive pumpkin.

The small Bears were both happy with the costumes I made for them. I didn't have patterns, I made them up myself. Those years I spent sewing in a sweatshop college theatre costume shop are still paying off. The LB's spider costume is made from a black sweatshirt with black fabric "legs" attached down the sides and strung together with fishing line. I stuffed the legs with batting and sewed them onto the shirt, then sewed the fishing line down through the ends of the sleeves and each of the legs, tying knots under each leg to keep them elevated. I made his mask from felt and elastic, with silver puffy paint "spider eyes." The GB's gray mouse costume was more involved; I wanted to start with a sweatshirt for her too, but Walmart didn't have one small enough for her. I bought a yard of gray fleece and made a tunic-style top myself. I traced one of her shirts, but made it larger to fit over a shirt. I made mouse ears with a padded hairband and some of the gray fleece; I sewed pipe-cleaners onto the backs of the ears to make them stand up. Then there's me, in my store-bought cat ears and tail. I've had them forever and they're my usual costume.

I'm glad they had warm things on because it was cold! Windy, too. Actually, it felt like the perfect Halloween night, like you'd read about in a short story. We went out at dusk. The sky was clear. Jupiter was plainly visible to the southwest, shining brightly. Our neighborhood is fairly high and we could see the city lights spreading across the mesa. There was pinon smoke in the air. We rely on the honor system with our giveaways (which included Smarties candy as well as pencils, stamps and mini bubbles this year) because we both like to accompany our kids for trick-or-treating. It's a good neighborhood. One man always serves hot dogs in his driveway. Some neighbors wear costumes to answer the door and everyone comments on kids' costumes. It's a great place to live and we're always reminded of that on Halloween.

The streets were quieter than usual this year, though. Earlier in the week, we had quite the catastrophe on our street when some workers laying underground cable caused a water-main break. We lost our water for about a day at our end of the street, which was inconvenient but we managed. At the other end of the street, they lost their water for several days and there is currently a hole in the middle of the street about sixteen feet in diameter as they continue working to repair the main. The road is closed down there and we've had to take a detour to get in and out of our street. Even the sidewalks are cordoned off at that end. I imagine this had something to do with the quietude tonight.

I cooked a "spooky" Halloween dinner tonight, as I do every year. Do you enjoy cooking fun foods for holidays? I think silly finger food is where I really shine. I made Crescent Mummy Dogs, which are an old favorite around here. I also made a recipe I devised myself a few years ago, which I call Spooky Eyeballs. These are made with slices of carrot and cucumber with a smear of cream cheese and a slice of olive on top. We also had tater tots and what I'm calling Witches' Fingers...otherwise known as cornichons. Dessert was not needed, given the massive piles of candy hauled home. It was a happy Halloween for this family. I hope yours was too.

40 comments:

  1. What a fun night! I can see you are making great memories for the little bears. :)

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  2. Those mummy dogs are awesome! I need to remember them for next year!!! And the costumes you sewed for your kiddos are wonderful! The photo of the 2 of them hugging made my heart melt! It sounded like the perfect Halloween! So glad you all had a magical night!!!

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  3. So heartwarming to see all the joy you experience with your beautiful children on this fun night! I love the costumes you made! I made the mummy dogs for the grandkids' Halloween party and they turned out very cute and were devoured! I love your spider hugger and the home made candy bowl sign! Your kids are a real part of things and that's so good!
    It rained here and was cold so not too many kids went out, but the ones who did were full of enthusiasm!

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  4. What a nice evening you had and you all looked adorable.. does daddy dress up? I got a huge kick out of your dinner.. the mummies are so creative! Our grandsons were taken across town to trick-or-treat in my DIL's sisters neighborhood. Fun times! ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

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  5. Looks like you all had such a fun night, just the kind that wonderful memories are made of.

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  6. You are so creative - love the costumes and the finger foods!

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  7. Glad your kids had a good time and the costumes are very good x

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  8. So many great things here Jennifer!! Love that you don't do "scary" costumes, wish they did that more around here, we seem to just get witches and vampires, we could do with some cute mice and spiders. Hope you have a great weekend. xx

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  9. Looks a cute Halloween! We've never really celebrated / recognised it in my house and we don't get any trick or treaters as we aren't in the village. Do it's quite easy to miss! Have a great weekend. X

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  10. Hi Jennifer. The perfect Halloween full of fun and good times. Your family are really lovely and I love the way you embrace adventures together. Everyone will remember these lovely times.
    Thank you for your very kind and sensitive comment over at Chalkys x

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  11. What a fun Halloween! I love your spooky dinner, so creative :)

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  12. We don't celebrate Halloween, but I can see how much effort you put into all you did with your children's costumes and the meal and pumpkin, I'm glad it was a lovely fun evening for you all xox Penny

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  13. Great costumes, it sounds like you had a really good day. Hallowe'en is quieter here, just a few trick-or-treaters visiting. We did a little Hallowe'en trail at our local wildfowl and wetlands reserve, and we carved a pumpkin and made pumpkin soup. Guy Fawkes night is next for us.

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  14. Looks like you lots of fun.
    Clare x

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  15. I'm glad you had a good time. It was pretty quiet here. Jx

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  16. It looks like it was a great time, we couldn't celebrate because we was on our way to the county Cork, so...next year :)

    Have a nice weekend!!

    Lluisa x

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  17. You worked hard preparing for this wonderful time with your family and friends, Jennifer, and obviously a good time was had by all - well worth the effort. I love all the detail that you went into with the costumes, and the special food and well, really, I enjoyed your post tremendously. Thank you for sharing your fun celebrations with us! Warm hugs, Joy xo

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  18. Fantastic! I LOVE the spider costume! And they'll have these for fun dress-ups now. Sounds like everyone had a fun time and I love that you are in the pictures there with the Kids (I'm so often the one behind the camera!) Mel x

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  19. It looks like you had such a fun Halloween and what a great effort all round. Love the cat look too :-)!! Our kids were bouncing off the walls too, it's such fun!! Xoxo

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  20. Love the pictures of you and the kids. Great time spent together. Wish I was that creative with the food. We just ordered pizza. :)

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  21. How lovely! I really enjoyed looking through your pictures,-you all look great! Looks like you all had a wonderful time, with delicious treats. :) Have a wonderful weekend.

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  22. Fantastic job on the costumes! And your husband and kids did a great job on the pumpkins, too. It's nice how everyone had a part in getting ready for the event. :-)

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  23. Glad you and your kids had such a good Halloween...I love how you made the mummy dogs for dinner. No "celebration" here since I don't have little ones. Hubby was working and I went to yoga class.

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  24. It looks like you had great fun. I'm glad I'm not the only one not to like the smell of pumpkin! Brilliant costumes :-)
    N

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  25. Hi Jennifer, how fun to rediscover your blog via a comment to me. Thank you! Your Halloween meal made me smile - so very clever and fun. The costumes are great...I like the hugging or capturing photo - so cute. We have close ties to NM - hubby graduated form UNM and just recently visited for the balloon festival.

    Have a good weekend Jennifer!

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  26. Hi Jennifer,

    I love this post! It sounds like such a good evening. I love the photographs of you and your children. Just fab! A real family affair. You put me to shame with my bah humbug attitude.

    Leanne xx

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  27. Your Halloween celebrations look lovely, a proper family Halloween. Those costumes you made are just fab. Lovely memories.
    Marianne xx

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  28. It looks like you had lots of fun. I love the outfits. I always used to make special spooky food when the children were young. They also loved bobbing for apples and trying to eat doughnuts with no hands.
    Sarah x

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  29. The kids look fantastic and so do you. I love an original pumpkin and a fun dinner for Halloween. Quiet is fine, they got out, trick or treated and were home early, not bad.
    Hugs,
    Meredith

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  30. Hey Jennifer! I LOVED all your adorable costumes. You did a great job creating them, and you and I could have been twins! I was a black cat too! Even though I no longer go trick or treating, I almost always dress up...and almost always as a black cat. :) All your bears did a great job on that pumpkin, and your spooky meal looked like such yummy fun. Love your mummy dogs! xo Paulette

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  31. It looks like you all had so much fun. We don't do anything for Halloween now that the kids are older, but I do have sweeties at the ready for the trick or treaters.

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  32. loving the spooky dinner! Very clever!
    what a nightmare about your water!

    happy halloween from England x

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  33. I so enjoyed this post. The costumes are just brilliant. You rock the cat look, by the way. Halloween seems like much more of a fun and family friendly celebration where you live. It always feels a bit sinister here. x

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  34. Great costumes, Jennifer, especially since the little bears' are made by you! You all look very excited. It's great that you live in such a nice neighbourhood, too. I hate the smell of pumpkins being carved, as well and actually cannot relate to all the craziness this season regarding recipes with it; just don't like the taste!

    Poppy

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  35. For the life of me I can't seem to carve a pumpkin! It's hard work! I prefer to paint them!
    The photo of your son wrapped around his sister is so precious!
    I noticed there weren't as many trick or treaters this year as well.... So glad your water is back on!! I know that was hard with kids!
    I loved your dinner too! So cute Jennifer!!
    Happy November!
    Much love,
    Tammy x

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  36. Cute costumes! I always made our children's costumes -- it was so much fun! Okay, so I'm wondering how that worked out putting the bowl of candy out with the sign to only take one?

    For years, I made "dinner in a pumpkin" for Halloween, but it has rice in it and we aren't eating those kind of carbs -- boohoo! Opted for regular food this year.

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  37. You did an awesome job on the costumes… they are so cute! And you make a really cute cat, too. Your Halloween looks just wonderful. I love your carved pumpkin.. it's very festive. We carved three pumpkins this year, and Charlotte painted one to look like Minnie Mouse… really cute! I love your spooky dinner idea and may have to steal it for next Halloween.

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  38. Wonderful pictures Jennifer and you all look awsome in your halloween outfits.
    love it all ☺

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