I love holidays. I do. I love the food and the decorations and the parties and all the days leading up to the holiday because you're just SO! EXCITED! And I come from a family of elementary school teachers, the kind of people who celebrate everything from Johnny Appleseed Day to the Hundredth Day of School. In my family, holidays require tons of people, tons of food, tons of gifts, and all the appropriate and necessary decor. So it shouldn't be surprising that my mother starts asking me what Jack is going to be for Halloween sometime in, oh, June.
Last year he wore a little pumpkin pajama outfit. I know. Lame. Other moms buy elaborate barnyard animal outfits or at least something cute, like peapod suits or peanut buntings. This year a friend of mine is going as Mary Had A while her daughter dresses up as Little Lamb. Oh, and the grandmother is SEWING these outfits. My mom doesn't sew costumes, but she did end up buying Jack his pumpkin outfit when she realized I wasn't really on the Halloween ball. I'm not sure why this is (see: looooves holidays) but I think it has something to do with the fact that babies can't really DO Halloween. Or any holiday, for that matter. It's not like they can eat Easter candy, right? They won't remember what presents they opened at their first Christmas.
So maybe I am a bit Bah Humbug when it comes to going all out on holidays with my babies. I just shrugged when my mom asked me about Halloween costumes this year. "Gee, I don't know," I said oh so breezily. "We'll find something eventually!"
Then the stores started coming out with costumes. My mom would pick through each one and then call me to try and figure out if I was leaning towards a particular theme. Did I want Jack to be a scruffy little dog? Maybe a cartoon character? She did see a cute fireman outfit ... oh, and what about Molly? Molly's going to dress up too, right? Molly would be JUST ADORABLE in the baby rabbit costume she saw yesterday...
And then I would get off the phone and do some self-analyzing. Why wasn't I in the proper Halloween spirit? What kind of mother doesn't care what her kid wears for Halloween? I was afraid the answer was "a rotten one."
No way was I going to be a rotten mother! I started hunting for costumes and, oh my goodness Internet, there are some dreadful costumes out there. Ugly animals, scary licensed characters, and shoddy superhero suits galore. The ones that aren't dreadful cost too much and I'm SORRY, but I'm not forking over $50 for a monkey suit my kid is going to wear ONCE, and that he probably won't even wear, right? Because what toddler keeps his hood on for longer than fifteen seconds?
When I gave up on the stores, I ended up borrowing last year's costume from one of Jack's little buddies. The playgroup was dressing up this week and I needed to find something, ANYTHING. The giraffe suit was a hit (if you couldn't tell from the picture, for which he actually SMILED, that has NEVER HAPPENED BEFORE) but my mom called today to say she bought Jack a dinosaur costume. You know, just in case borrowing one didn't work out. When we go to her house on Halloween to help pass out candy, Jack will have his pick. Two costumes for Halloween! We really DO go all out in this family.
Molly, however, is stuck with this:
She hates it, but she won't remember the time her mother forced her inside the cutest ladybug costume ever. Right?