Pre-Halloween Festivities!

Our Halloween celebration has already been going on for DAYS! I got my first taste as Cinderella at Hollywood Affair Thursday night. [Side bar: my spiritual thoughts on Halloween: I love Jesus, and I love celebrating Halloween!!! I don't like it when people try to make Halloween all about evil. It's about having fun, dressing up, & getting candy. Period. If you need to make it spiritual, it's about celebrating God's triumph & authority over evil through mockery. Here are two articles on that subject I like: a Southern Baptist Halloween Rant and a historical perspective on Halloween's Christian custom roots. Not saying that either of these is the Gospel, but I like their perspectives. In our house, evil doesn't even come up. I relish the innocent joy of harmless costumes & CANDY! :-D]

So speaking of costumes, I made my very first homemade Halloween costume for Will! (I came up with many of my own when I was younger, but this is the first I've made for one of our kids.) Will *LOVES* NASCAR driver Kyle Busch. "Love" may not be a strong enough word; and Will really wanted to be Kyle for Halloween. Well, Kyle Busch firesuits (uniforms) are sold-out everywhere online...but I actually didn't think that was so bad: NASCAR fans are crazy vocal, and I wouldn't put it past some rude redneck fan of a rival driver to say, "Hey kid, your costume sucks! Kyle is a loser!" :'( That would Sooo, since M&M's is Kyle's big sponsor, I suggested why not go as an M&M! He was THRILLED at this option...and I thought I could actually no-sew this costume...right?

I bought a yard of red felt 40% off at Hobby Lobby, doubled it over, cut the biggest circle possible, put the two sides up to Will & pinned it together, slipped him out, and hot glued the seams shut where needed. I then found an M&M's "M" picture online; I had my Silhouette SD automatically trace the image & cut it out of white vinyl; and I stuck it in the middle of the red felt circle. Ta da! [I found it oddly divine that I did all this while watching Project Runway & Mad Fashion. Chris March, I tried to make you proud! :-D]

Friday night, the kids & I went over to Thronateeska & the Flint RiverQuarium for their annual "Tricks & Treats" Halloween Event. It was a great, family-friendly time, (and I was extra excited to support the event, b/c I helped to decorate for it Friday morning though Junior League volunteering. :-)) The RiverQuarium had a costume contest (Will got a little prize!), games & candy stations throughout, animal presentations (the snakes from Will's bday were out!), a jumpy house, a scary [to Annelise :-P] “professor’s laboratory” haunted room, and a spooky dive show! That was so cool - we've been to dive shows there before where we watch them feed the fish, but this time, the divers were in amazing flowy costumes! (Pardon the awful phone pic quality...)
At Thronateeska, they had face painting (Will got a train, of course), candy stations, dinosaur bone puzzles, and a weather center with [green-screened] floating heads. :-P A trick-or-treating candy path along Riverfront Trail connected Thronateeska & the RiverQuarium. The best part? It was totally free, b/c we're members!

The kids scored loads more candy on Saturday & Sunday with Sissy's festival parade and then a carnival at church.

Tomorrow (Halloween) morning, Annelise has a HUGE Fall Festival at Montessori. It's one of the school's biggest events of the year. At least one parent of every student attends and helps run the carnival part. I signed up to help run the photo booth. :-) Then we all get to share a big potluck lunch. We signed up to bring a dessert: the easy healthy chocolate chip pumpkin muffins, of course!

Tonight on the phone, my mom said to Annelise, "You know Halloween has always been your Mommy's favorite holiday?" She replied, "Yep! Because she gets to eat our candy!" Smart girl... ;-)