(Let's pretend Halloween wasn't almost 2 weeks ago. I always do a Halloween post, and dammit, here's another one, better late than never, right?)
Another great Halloween in the books. I love Halloween in general, and I really love Halloween in our neighborhood. I've written about it many times before, how so many people decorate their houses, sit out on their stoops and hand out candy, and how the whole neighborhood is out in costume walking around. We decorate our house and yard to the nines; Helene and I try to add something new each year.
This year, after some initial costume indecision, we ended up with a Hermione and a Superman.
(Helene is the absolute most uncooperative for photos right now. At least Ajax is cute.)
Helene was going to be an Enderdragon from Minecraft, and I'd already made most of the costume. But we've been reading the Harry Potter books aloud to her, and when I suggested she go as Hermione for Storybook Character Day at school, she fell completely in love with the idea, and wanted to be Hermione for Halloween too. As a certified Harry Potter fan, and a member of the Hogwarts Running Club, I had no basis to say no.
Ajax initially wanted to be a skeleton. We went through pages of costumes online, and he kept coming back to skeleton, and told all his friends he was going to be a skeleton. But when the costume arrived, he was actually scared of it, and I may be a terrible mother, but I do draw the line at forcing my child to wear a costume he's terrified of, so we tried again. "SUPERHERO!" he said, and lo, he was Superman.
Seth's parents came into town, so for once, we could leave someone to man the front door and candy bowl, and both of us could go out with the kids to trick or treat. We made plans for our friends Maria and Peter and their dad, Dan, to come over and trick or treat with us.
We usually start out while it's still a bit light out, to get photos, and see our neighbors. Ajax is still little, so I wanted him to get out before things got darker and scarier and busier. Our neighborhood is a trick or treating favorite. Some houses get as many as 1,400 kids (that is not a typo). Big houses on East Capitol Street decorate elaborately, with ghosts on pulleys, dramas on balconies, music, smoke, lights. It's pretty amazing.
And this is Ajax, sitting on the sidewalk, and refusing to go up to a house where our neighbor was dressed as The Incredible Hulk, and sitting on the front stoop. Too scary.
Don't worry- Ajax and the other kids got PLENTY of candy. Ajax insisted on carrying his jack o'lantern bucket almost the entire way, even when it was so obviously too heavy and hurting his hand. Even when he was ready to go home, he still didn't let me carry his bucket until the last couple of blocks.
Ajax and I came home, and he examined his haul. He didn't want to take off his Superman costume.
The rest of the troops got back a little later, and we fed everyone quesadillas, guacamole, and butternut squash soup, and we all took turns handing out candy.
We've done enough Halloweens with our own kids that we're getting to the "this is what we always do" stage. I love it. I love having our own traditions. One of ours has become sitting on our front stoop with our neighbors handing out candy after all of our kids are done trick or treating. The kids seem to have just as much fun handing out candy as getting it, honestly. We know so many of our neighbors now, and it's so much fun to see everyone out on Halloween. Our friend Dan said that this year was the best Halloween they've ever had. Of course, I invited them back for next year.