Reese’s for breakfast

I love Halloween, but in the same way that I love tequila—a little bit goes a long way, and too much is, ah, regrettable. The dressing up? That’s awesome. Having candy? Yes, please. (Especially from the point of view of this whole parenting gig, because they go begging FOR ME and then share because they love me. Or because they leave their buckets on the counter and go to bed earlier than I do. Details.) But when Halloween falls on a weeknight and the kids keep wanting to do “just one more house,” at the end of the night while I’m trying to get cranky children into bed, I’m thanking the lord that Halloween comes but once a year.

We went trick-or-treating with some friends, and the friends had other friends come as well… friends-of-friends, I guess they were, and so there was a veritable SWARM of children in our group, which was made up almost entirely of boys. Chickadee walked along with me, most of the time, and my friend’s 2-year-old daughter rode in a stroller, and then ALL THOSE BOYS ran and galloped and frolicked and did things like respond to “THERE’S A CAR COMING!” by RUNNING OUT INTO THE MIDDLE OF THE ROAD. Because that’s what boys do.

I’m pleased to report that we didn’t lose a single child. Not one of them was run over! That’s the Halloween miracle, right there.

Also, only one house gave the kids weird unwrapped candy. It appeared to be a painstakingly assembled container of Red Vines, black licorice, AND Twizzlers (just in case you have a preference when it comes to your red gummy whips, I suppose) which had all been ripped into 1-inch-long pieces. I didn’t know that anyone DID that, anymore, but the children (who have been schooled in proper Halloween candy safety since birth) thanked the giver and then—upon peeking into the container—volunteered “I’ve got something to throw away!” Heh.

Monkey and one of the friend-of-friends hit it off famously, so much so that I was constantly dropping to the back of the swarm to hurry them along, so engrossed were they in their various discussions of Great Importance.

Conversation ranged from what the grim reaper actually DOES to how many different ways there are to make a parallelogram to who’s seen the most episodes of Ben 10. This other kid’s father was so impressed by their never-ending and serious geekery that he asked them “What’s the longest word in the dictionary?”

“Onomatopoeia?” guessed the new friend.

“Antidisestablishmentarianism!” crowed Monkey.

(I tried not to look too smug. Onomatopoeia was a really good guess.) (Hey, at least I didn’t point out that actually, floccinaucinihilipilification is longer by one letter.) (I am simultaneously pleased and disgusted with myself for knowing that.)

Anyway, I am now hoping that the boys grow up and have babies together. Babies who are nerdiness squared, as well as being the first children conceived of two sperm rather than an egg and a sperm, which doubtless those two will be able to figure out, given enough time and a few more episodes of Ben 10.

I just reread this last bit and realized that I should probably apologize to my children RIGHT NOW for all of the times they’re going to get beat up in high school.

Hey, let’s divert our attention from my family’s utter geekitude with some pictures, shall we?

Chickadee elected to go out this year as an irresponsible babysitter. She wore bright blue eyeshadow and some lipstick, headphones around her neck and an old cell phone of Otto’s which we finally got her to keep clipped to her belt (early in the evening she kept pulling it out and pretending to talk: “Well hello, BOYFRIEND, I am TOTALLY watching TV and eating snacks while SITTING ON THIS BABY!”), and—oh yeah—a baby pinned to her butt. So that she could sit on it.

She looked like a miniature teenager and I saw my future. It was very scary.

Monkey got the most laughs of the evening in his getup as a chick magnet. In all of his running around he would occasionally dislodge a chick, and we parents kept adding appropriate narration whenever this happened and we had to retrieve a chick from the ground—“Thanks for the laughs, baby. Call ya never!” and “Sorry, babe, I’m in demand over here and you’re crimping my style!”

I must say that I found this role particularly endearing while he’s missing his two front teeth, for some reason. And also because Monkey really sort of IS a chick magnet in the most oblivious possible way. He’s a very PRETTY boy and the ladies love him and he doesn’t even notice. Heh.

As for me, well, I was my usual beautiful self. I’m sort of amazed that my children aren’t yet embarrassed to be seen with me.

Otto stayed home and gave out candy here, after snapping a million pictures before we headed out. Maybe HE was embarrassed to be seen with me….

This morning was rough; everyone is tired and it’s back to the daily grind. But I guess it was worth it. And also that I deserve a mini Butterfinger or three for a snack.


  1. Megan

    You guys ROCK halloween costumes! Those are… and it hurts to say this… actually maybe as good as our best year ever. I would have to bitterly resent you for a while but you won my cold bitter heart by being the only other person EVER to know floccinaucinihilipilification. Even the spell check is getting all red liney in my stuff over it.

  2. Lisa

    I absolutely adore the cleverness of your kids costumes!! Mine decided to go as sick children with the chicken pox (lovingly provided by moi, brandishing a red washable marker…well, I hope it’s washable anyway!) and all that required were pajamas.
    Enjoy your mini Butterfingers!

    Oh, and P.S…I LOVE your feather wig!!

  3. Jessica @ A Bushel and a Peck

    Damn, I would totally have thought antidisestablishmentarianism was the longest. I guess I am not a true geek. Great costumes!

  4. All Adither

    Your kids have great hair. And so do you.

  5. Amy

    Dude! Your kids have no faces! That in and of itself is pretty Halloween-costume amazing. :)

  6. janet

    beg to differ on the longest word. pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis (look it up… it’s a lung disease caused by inhaling silica dust…)

    so yeah, i’m a geek. what’s it to ya? :-)

    (and your kids’ costumes? brilliant)

  7. Mir

    Janet, I’m afraid I still outgeek you: The OED does not recognize that as a “true” word, and as it is hotly contended, I discount it. ;)

  8. janet

    hmmmph. well…. be that way, then!

  9. Mir

    Okay, coming back to say I looked it up and apparently it IS in the OED, but as “pneumoconiosis” means the same thing and people are lobbying to have the longer version removed, I still discount it. LOL.

  10. Karen Rani

    I’m going to stick to small words here and just say your costumes rocked the casbah! How creative!

  11. The Other Leanne

    At my door last night: 20-hundred little princesses, six ninjas, four wizards, not ONE irresponsible babysitter or chick magnet. You are the greatest Halloweenies ever!

  12. Paula

    Those costumes are super-hip. And damn if your family isn’t polysyllabic. We restrict ourselves to gestures and grunts.

    I, too, am suffering post-Halloween exhaustion/malaise. Two school parties, a parade, trick-or-treating, then the excruciating crash from a massive sugar high. Thank God it’s once a year.

  13. saucygrrl

    As one who makes a point of never having a gramatical pissing contest (and thereby avoiding one more way to show people how unintelligent I am) I have to say, I just LOVE when the costumes are clever and homemade. Store-bought costumes are pretty and all, but I’ve always felt that most of the fun from Halloween came from the creativity of an imaginative costume and the time spent putting it together. That and costumes are too expensive these days. (Ooo… I’m sounding old… get off my lawn you punks!!)

  14. andi

    Love, love, LOVE the costumes!

  15. Aimee

    Wow, LOVE the kids’ costumes. So creative!

  16. Trish

    Those are some of the most creative costumes I’ve seen in a while.

    My daughter was a pirate – one of the only costumes that you can buy for a 3yo girl that ISN’T a princess.

  17. Ree

    Chick Magnet. Hee!
    Baby Sitter. hee hee hee!

    I’m sooooo stealing this next yar. Even if I have to go out trick or treating myself.

  18. Kendra

    This is why I’ve always hated Halloween-cool, clever people like you with your smart costumes. And me over here with my nothing-at-all, and my boys store-bought Star Wars characters.

    They could totally win a light saber battle, though.

    Worshiping at the temple of the Mirspawn!

  19. jennielynn

    Is it okay with you and Monkey if Big Red goes as a chick magnet next year? I promise to give you credit.

  20. Kristi

    Hilarious costumes and documentary! Your way with words amazes me every time. (And I don’t mean the way you know ridiculously long and useless words.)

    Today I should technically be in some sort of diabetic coma from all the candy I consumed yesterday (3 square meals of chocolate bite-me sized goodness!), but maybe it is because of the fact that I ate NOTHING BUT candy that I’m still conscious. I absolutely feel it in my thighs though.

  21. Burgh Baby's Mom

    Monkey’s costume made me laugh out loud. And since he doesn’t have a face, I don’t feel bad for being totally jealous of his fabulous hair. It would be wrong to be jealous of a regular kid, but a kid without a face is not a problem.

    Oh, and the licorice? WTF?

  22. kidzmama

    The costumes are great! Little effort, big laughs.

    I’m glad Monkey found a pal. Our seven year old son is similar to Monkey and I am always happy when he finds a fellow “geek” too!

    Next up…Thanksgiving! Bring it on.

  23. Genevieve

    Those are utterly fabulous costumes.

    And I was coming to post pneumomoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis, but Janet beat me to it. But I will definitely join the geek squad.

  24. Tracey

    You got it going on! I love the irresponsible babysitter…I may have to steal that for next year :) Sounds like yours turned out better than mine. Let’s just say it involved a toothless vampire, a cranky monster and a real grumpy, sick witch. Oh yea, that was me. :)

  25. mama speak

    Love your costumes; you, the Mirspawn and I share an affinity for costumes that are “flip”. I so wish you lived near us, cause everyone I know (except the husband) thinks I’m weird. And I find that looking at pix later, not nearly as funny as they were at the time; i.e.—hubby and I went as a soccer mom & NASCAR dad (things that neither of us are, but we do own a minivan,) during the appropriate election. Bummer was that while it was funny, we had to explain it to everyone, cause they are lame. I have no doubt you all would’ve gotten it.

    Your big words, you scare me. You and your children scare me. I’m so glad someone is raising that next gen to run the world when we all need to be taken care of; Lord knows Britney’s not.

  26. bec 37

    No unwrapped candy here, but one family did make little baggies of assorted candy tied with yarn, along with a flyer all about Jesus. Way to get the word out, folks!

  27. Juliness

    Fabulous costumes one and all!

  28. Sheila

    Chickadee could have come to me for some more inspiration for her costume, such as lugging around a computer on which she has changed the IM username and logged approximately 5.8 hours of chatting. Or, she could simply have carried an empty carton of ice cream and affixed telltale peanut-butter chocolate smudges around her mouth. Which just happened to be her client’s favorite flavor. The one she was saving for a “special” day. But on that day, the ice cream was gone, so her client had to break into the super-secret stash of Dove Chocolates in the basement freezer. And she stubbed her toe really hard on the washing machine as she snuck down there, causing much consternation and oh, wait… is this about Chickadee?

    Uh…sorry. (Slinks away quietly…)

  29. Crisanne

    Your costumes are so creative. I thought we did well with Lilly from Lilly and the Purple Plastic Purse and a puppy from The Poky Little Puppy. You put us to shame!!

  30. Shalee

    Those were some brilliant costume choices which I will boldly steal next year… if I can remember them.

    And actually floccinaucinihilipilificatious is the longest word, but what’s an extra letter. (Don’t worry. I totally saw it in Wikipedia. I had to look up your word since it was new to me. You still rule in the longest word contest.)

  31. Shalee

    Oh, and your son should geek out with mine. He went as Ben 10 again. Yes, he loves it so much, he had to be him two years in a row. (But he hasn’t seen all the shows since we don’t have cable. But believe you me, he can tell you ALL ABOUT the ones he has seen.)

  32. Wendy

    The best breakfast is frozen Reese’s buttercups. Stolen from the bag of candy a week ago and stashed into the freezer, where they were forgotten until someone had to get the frozen waffles.

  33. Nancy R

    My husband’s cousin has dressed her kids in homemade costumes for three of their four Halloweens. Last year, they (they’re twins, brother and sister) were tubes of Crest Toothpaste – complete with pleated lamp shades as lids. This year, one was a jar of peanut butter (Jiff Creamy) and the other was a jar of jelly (Welch’s Grape).

    I look forward to her pictures every year, as I outfit my kids in store-bought costumes…

  34. Daisy

    The chick magnet and its accompanying commentary get the prize for best costume I’ve heard of lately.

  35. Kate C.

    Ahhhh! Chick magnet!!!!!!! Ahhhhh!

    Love it.

    Your son is going to be heart breaker, and that’s without being able to see the future heart breaker’s face… OMG. Also, I know you’re not so thrilled with the hair, but… wow. He does the shaggy really well.

    Does Chickadee (also with the hair!) know the Shel Silverstein poem:

    Mrs. Mc Twitter the Babysitter
    I think she’s a little bit crazy.
    She thinks the babysitter’s supposed
    To sit upon the baby?

    I haven’t thought about that poem in years. But oh, I have now.

  36. Meg

    Those costumes are great!

  37. Elena

    AHA! the flossy-nihilism word! or as my friend Heather heard, the FOSSE nihilism word–can’t you just see it in top hat, beaded bustier and cane, busting out the show tunes whilst tap dancing away during a fantasy sequence with Richard Gere?
    please don’t say it’s just me…

  38. Jess

    Those are great costumes! Though I will admit to thinking, upon viewing the first picture, “WTF? Why does an irresponsible babysitter wear a mask, and what kind of mask is that??”

    Yes, I’m slow. ;)

  39. kate

    After all that, I figure you deserve a whole bag of Butterfingers. The costumes were great … I liked the chick magnet. It makes me feel nostalgic for those days when my now 15-year-old used to dress up for Hallowe’en. Those years are fleeting.

  40. Not The Mama

    I love their costumes — the wit! the creativity! So much better than just slapping on a random, store-bought costume.

  41. Susan Getgood

    The costumes were great. Love your hair :-)

    I’m with you on the enough Halloween already. In our town it starts the week before when the Chamber of Commerce does a Downtown trick or treat. All the stores give out candy. That’s Thurs. Then Friday, the after school program does a party. And on Halloween proper, they have a party at school. By the time actual Halloween night comes around, I’ve already had it. And that’s with skipping the other commercially oriented trick or treat at the local mall. I’m just glad my son’s costume survived!

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