I always loved Halloween as a kid. When I was too old to go trick-or-tricking, the holiday was just another day. And in college, Halloween was just another excuse to party. But now that I've got kids of my own, I can't help but think about some of my favorite Halloween memories, both the ancient ones from when I was donning costumes to the more recent ones with my children. Here are my...
Top 10 Halloween Memories
10) I loved those elementary school parties and parades. As a teacher, I'm bracing myself for the sugar highs and costume malfunctions, but it's worth it to see how much the kids enjoy it.
9) Dogs love Halloween too! Our family had a Great Dane when I was growing up. He was tall enough to rest his head on the kitchen table, and whenever we carved our pumpkins, he was right there licking up the seeds.
8) Speaking of dogs, my husband and I had a chocolate lab, and every Halloween we'd dress him up in a doggy college jersey from one of my husband's universities. He had his name on the back and everything. Even though he's no longer with us, I still store that jersey in my tub of Halloween decorations and think of him.
7) When I was a rebellious sophomore in high school, my friends and I decided to dress up and see if people would actually give us candy. I dressed up as a hooker. I cannot believe my mother let me leave the house looking like I did.
6) I'm not a big fan of adult costume parties, but one year my husband made me go to one. I was very pregnant with Big C, and every costume looked ridiculous on me. I ended up going as a cop handcuffed to my prisoner (Mr. Roller Coaster). Symbolic?
5) When Big C was in preschool 2 years ago, he dressed up and had to perform songs for the parents and their eager video cameras. That boy didn't sing a single word. But he sure did look cute.
4) When I was a kid, my mother hand-made all of my costumes. (Sadly, I did not inherit a lick of her craftiness.) My favorite was my ET costume. Still one of my favorite movies.
3) The Japanese don't celebrate Halloween. But when you're Japanese, and you live near a U.S. military base who cares about cultural differences? When we lived on base, friends warned me to buy at least 30 bags of candy because the local Japanese nationals were extended an invitation to come on base to participate in this American holiday. Thinking my friends were exaggerating, I purchased maybe a dozen bags. But when a swarm of non-English speaking Japanese children dressed in crazy costumes invaded our front porch, I wished I had listened to my friends' advice. We finally had to upturn our empty candy bowl to show them through our language barrier that we were out of candy.
2) I was so excited the first year I was allowed to go trick-or-treating with no parental supervision. I was dressed as a baby, and my friend and I walked around my neighborhood feeling very grown-up. We were getting ready to head home when I heard footsteps behind us. Suddenly, 2 boys raced up behind us and grabbed my candy-filled pillow case out of my hand and ran off. Being the tough tomboy that I was, I ran after them. And I'd like to think I would have caught up to them if part of my baby costume didn't include my footwear: slippers. But what I remember most about that night was that when I returned home in tears and my big brother heard what had happened, he dumped out his own pillow case and gave me half of his candy.
1) Nothing beats living vicariously through your children. I love seeing the joy on my kids' faces as they ring a doorbell, say trick-or-treat, show off their costumes, politely say thank you, and run down to meet me at the curb to show me what goody they had just received. My children make me love Halloween again.
What is your favorite Halloween memory?