Halloweeny

This is it – the best Sunday of the year! How I love having an extra hour to spend during the day, and how I love having both my kids in bed by 6:30pm. Yes, I’ll probably be up a little earlier than usual tomorrow, but that is a good thing, as the girls and I have taken to sleeping in recently, and have had to do the mad get-ready-dash one too many times. The girls have known there is something wrong with getting up in the dark, and they were right…

But the dark is coming. Slowly but surely. The leaves have almost all fallen off the trees, and the ones still clinging have turned a browner hue, but there is still some subtle color to be seen. Today as the sun set (at 4:30) Matt and I watched the light bring life to the remaining trees in our backyard. The leaves, which look dull during most of the day, shone in the sunlight, showing us the bits of yellow and red that still live within them, for a few more days at least. November is an ugly month to many in New England – dark and chilly, no leaves, no snow – but the subtly of light this month always moves me. November is not outward with it’s beauty – you need to look for it – and we certainly found it today.

And this time of year doesn’t want for excitement either. Unlike the beginning of the year, when we search for something to celebrate, the end of the year is festival after festival after holiday after holiday, and there is always something to do, make, decorate, burn, wear…

Let the celebrating begin!

I have to work the night of the lantern walk at Emerson’s school for Michaelmas, but Em doesn’t know that, and she is enjoying the lantern Matt made her. Maybe we’ll have our own lantern walk. There is always a place for celebrating light as the darkness comes…We did jack-o-lantern it up for Halloween though! There is nothing that says fall like some hot cider and pumpkin seeds, and some scary friends…
And the girls suited up!Emerson wanted to be a fairy this year, which I was excited about, because it’s the easiest costume ever. Especially since she already has sparkly dresses, wands, wings, and a flower crown I made her in the spring. I think she would have looked cute, but for the million necklaces, and the face paint – she wanted face paint at the last minute because Ophelia had some, and she changed her mind about the color so many times that it ended up looking almost black. But she was happy with it, and that’s all that matters.

Ophelia was a flower. A silly one.
After a bit of deliberation, we decided to stay local this year, and just trick-or-treat in our neighborhood. There are some people in the neighborhood with tween aged kids, and I thought we might get lucky and see a few people. I was also feeling rebellious against organized Halloween events – parades, popular neighborhoods, parties in a school gym, and all the rest – and was longing for the simplicity of my youth, when kids just walked outside their doors for Halloween. We even left a bowl of candy on our porch with hope that someone might stop by our house while we were gone… but they didn’t. And we didn’t see anyone, which I thought might put a damper on Emerson’s Halloween, but it didn’t phase her at all. She alternated between skipping and running from house to house – in which people waited who “hadn’t had trick-or-treaters in three years,” but were “always hopeful!” Needless to say, the girls got a lot of attention – and candy. And my rebellious ideas were reinforced. Kids – at least five-year-olds – don’t need the perfect costume, the perfect place to be, the most people. They just need to walk around in the dark and have fun. To ring peoples doorbells and yell “TRICK-OR-TREAT!” – or run away in Ophelia’s case – when they open the door. It’s a fun and spooky night, and the girls thoroughly enjoyed it, despite the fact that it wasn’t very “Halloweeny” on our street. Next year Emerson might enjoy something more -like going with a friend – but I am going to try and resist falling prey to commercial Halloweenism as long as I can.

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