It’s Halloween Already?

Note: This column was published in the Barrow Journal on October 30, 2013.

Time is going too fast. Every year I have ideas of what I can do with the boys – fall crafts, books to read, and other fun stuff. But here it is Halloween, and I haven’t even pulled out our seasonal books from storage. Truth is, I’m not much of a craft person anyway.  We’ve been doing some low-key stuff this autumn and getting ready for Halloween in our own, simple way.

My seven-year-old knew what he wanted to be for Halloween six months ago, and luckily it was an easy costume to find. My husband took him shopping, and they found a cool skeleton outfit that he’ll wear trick or treating tomorrow tonight.

My four-year-old still has not outgrown his quirky habit of refusing to wear anything except shorts and short sleeves. Yes, this will be a long winter, just like last year! A costume is out of the question for him, but he will wear long-pant pajamas, so maybe I can get him to wear those Toy Story Woody pjs on Halloween night. Wish me luck.

We pulled out some of our Halloween décor and decorated our front porch, but we keep it simple. A few small ghosts, a spider web that my son made, and a scary-looking guy hanging from the ceiling is about all I care to do. We’ll carve a pumpkin to finish it off before the big day. (We did! See photo.)

One event that has become a tradition for us is attending the Scary, Slimy, Oozy Day at the Sandy Creek Nature Center. My son never wants to pass up the chance to pet snakes or hold a tarantula, and they have lots of fun activities for kids to participate in too.

This fall my seven-year-old went to his very first sleepover with two friends too.  It was a birthday party for one of the little boys. Since he has never slept away from us, I wasn’t sure how he would feel about it, but he was more excited than I have ever seen him before. He was gone about 23 hours, and I think he would have gladly stayed longer!

The mom who hosted the sleepover told me that at one point my son said, “I think my family will miss me so much. I’ve never been away from them before.” Thinking that he might be a little homesick, she offered to call us so he could go home early. She said he looked at her like she was crazy and said, “NO! I’m staying the WHOLE TIME!”

My four-year-old wasn’t happy when he discovered he was not invited to the birthday party, and I felt horrible that I had not considered that. It was hard to tell him that the sleepover was just for the big boys, but he recovered quickly when I assured him he would be treated to a good time by spending one-on-one time with his parents, which doesn’t happen very often.

We took him out to dinner, shopping for a new ball and Frisbee, which he loves to play with outside with his dad, and I watched his favorite movie with him. He snuggled up in my lap and whispered in my ear a lot, so I guess you could say I had a date night myself!

Every year brings new milestones and new experiences.  As tomorrow today marks my 42nd birthday, I am not so weary about growing older as I thought I would be. My 40s are the most challenging, wonderful, and least boring of all my years on this earth.

Happy Halloween!

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