More like Frenziedween

By Mir
October 29, 2004

Gah. Is Halloween over yet?? It’s starting to feel like a month-long extravaganza. I have a huge stack of paper pumpkins and renderings of witches and the like that I’ve been forbidden to throw away. First we spent the beginning of the month choosing and finding and refining the necessary costumes, and since then it’s been an exercise in patience. For me. The children are not patient. The children ask every single day if it’s Halloween yet.

And today, what fun! Halloween parties at school! Because heaven knows it’s not like they’re going to have enough junk food this weekend! Great!

In their continuing quest to convince me that all the hype about our school system is exactly that–hype and no substance–Chickadee’s school was kind enough to send a notice home yesterday to inform me that there will be a costume parade today. Way to give advance notice! The parents are supposed to attend this thing. It’s a good thing I’m an unemployed slacker, I guess. I won’t have a problem getting there. But less than a day’s notice? I’d be annoyed, if I had a life. Heck, I’m annoyed, anyway.

Chickadee’s costume for this year is… ummmmm… bulky. I managed to talk her into taking last year’s Madeline outfit rather than her new costume. I reasoned with her that it’s so big, she’d have trouble getting it there and getting dressed on her own, etc. Really, I was thinking more along the lines of “if she spills juice and smears cookies on her new costume before Halloween I’ll cry.” The added bonus with the Madeline costume, of course, is that it demands a dress and tights and fancy shoes to go with it. Chickadee was all over that action. So that was resolved. My facial tic didn’t come out until she spent twenty minutes pulling her tights on, smoothing out every wrinkle and ultimately settling the waistband somewhere around her armpits.

Monkey’s school takes a different approach to Halloween. You could call it the “dealing with a buildingful of preschoolers in costume is second on our list of preferred activities right behind plucking out our own eyeballs with rusty tweezers” approach. I can’t say I blame them one bit. I was relieved to hear that they would not be hosting a dress-up shindig. In its place, the brilliant teachers there decided on the logical alternative to a costume party.

A pajama pizza party. Of course. That’s what they do for Day of the Dead in Mexico, I hear.

So you’d think that would’ve cut way down on our prep time this morning. Ha ha. It is to laugh! You see, on a regular morning I get Monkey out of bed and remove his soggy pull-up and wipe him down and then leave him to get dressed in the clothes we picked out the night before. On a pajama pizza party morning, he insists that he’s ready to go RIGHT NOW and runs up and down the hallway like a lunatic, screeching “PIZZA PARTY! PIZZA PARTY!” while the bottom of his pull-up drags along on the floor behind him on account of being loaded down with approximately twelve gallons of urine. When I try to point out that we still need to get him ready, he will twirl in place like a ballerina, declaring, “I’m already in my pajamas! I’m ready!” After a while, I will lose patience, grab him, throw him down on the floor, and sit on him long enough to remove his pull-up.

“Ewwww, Mama, that’s really gross,” he commented, as I rolled up the specimen to throw it away.

“I agree. Try peeing in the potty next time.” But it was too late; he was off and running down the hall again, this time naked from the waist down. “Hey! Put on your underpants!”

On the next pass he swooped past me, grabbed his Super Grover underwear, and went flying back down the hallway again. “Me and Super Grover are going to a PAJAMA PIZZA PARTEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!”

Oh, well. At least I reasoned that a pajama party is a good place for bed head, and thus was able to skip the wetting and brushing of Monkey’s hair.

Finally, everyone was ready to go. We headed over to the bus stop, my hair still wet from my quick shower. The neighbor girls came outside to greet us and the littlest one took one look at me and said, “You look scary in the morning.” Isn’t that adorable? So cute. I only cried a little. Also I may or may not have told her she looks rude in the morning, under my breath before her mother came out. The bus pulled up and The Coolest Bus Driver In The World (whom we already adore) was dressed head to toe as a wizard: wig, beard, hat, robes, the works. The girls were delighted. Off they went.

At Monkey’s school, squarms of little ones in jammies were at the various play areas when his teacher asked me if my shirt glows in the dark. (I’m wearing my dancing skeletons shirt today, naturally.) I said I wasn’t sure, but I didn’t think so. She suggested I duck into the (dark) bathroom to check. So I did. And guess what? The skeletons glow! I emerged and announced this exciting finding, whereupon I was mobbed by a flock of pajama-ed pygmies, shoving me back into the bathroom so that they could all see, too.

And that’s why, when the second teacher arrived, she thought the entire room was empty. She was really confused. I have no idea why it didn’t occur to her that I’d just taken the entire class into the bathroom in the pitch black dark so that we could all admire my shirt. Also the look of panic on her face when all the children fled out of the bathroom, screaming (all I said was “boo,” sheesh), was unnecessary. Just call me the Pied Piper. Or not.

I’m gonna go dry my hair, now. And maybe turn off the lights and look at my shirt some more.


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