The evolving spirit of Halloween reveals a startling trend.
When my son finally got to the age where he could choose his own costume, we had four straight years of Brett Favre and after that it was two years of Derek Jeter before he went into his zombie years.
One year I made my daughter's costume. It was a box of popcorn. I was so proud of how it came out that I made her wear it for a full hour of trick or treating even though she kept tripping over herself in it. Bad mom.
Halloween is so great when your kids are little.
I was practically pounding my fists and chanting "GOLDFISH!" by the end of the post and if there had not been a picture, I would have rioted.
So, I do not love Halloween, but my wife enjoys costumes and so does my son, so being an only child, he has had multiple costumes, based on the event, be it downtown trick or treating, school, or the main event. So I tracked his costume choices via my wife's very organized Facebook album of photos:
2016-Theodore Roosevelt as a Rough Rider / School: Jim Harbaugh
2017-Sherlock Holmes / School: Price is Right contestant
2019-Elliott from E.T. (with bike handlebars so ET could be in the basket) / School: Lee Corso, complete with Duck headgear for school)
2020-Scooby-Doo / School: Squints from The Sandlot
I guess what I have realized is that my son just likes IP?
The hybrid costumes are the best. A couple of years ago my daughter (almost three at the time) wanted to be a princess dinosaur. My wife sewed some stegosaurus-like plates on the back of a hoodie, daughter put a frilly skirt and tiara on and she absolutely loved it. She's going to be a butterfly this year, a choice she's surprisingly stuck with since before Christmas last year.
I had a wretched day and this was what I needed. Thank you, friend.
I remember Holly as a pirate ship very well. I messaged you to ask how much cheese it took to get her to cooperate. You responded that, yeah, there were some bribes involved, but that the duration could be measured in seconds. This photo is right up there with your Holly-at-the-horse-stable classic.
We bought a fort building kit for my kids (think oversized Kinect set with plastic poles and connectors of various lengths). So of course my son regularly constructs weapons out of it. One day, his cousin (say 4 at the time) hit him right below the eye and he ended up with a genuine black eye looking thing. Fun call my wife got from the school nurse the next day.
Anyways, those toys are banned from the non-basement sections of the house but still manage to cause chaos all the time. The violence period, along with my son's WWII phase may last his entire life and he's only 8.
Halloween is my wife's favorite holiday and my girls both love it equally as much. Last year we did an at home "Halloween Egg Hunt" where we just hid a bunch of candy around the house and yard. We bought a giant bag of orange and black eggs and each kid had an assigned color so there would be even distribution, i.e. less fighting. The youngest got orange because she wasn't as good at finding eggs as her sister. Outside the house we used little plastic bags with jack-o-lantern and witch faces so they weren't looking for black eggs in the dark. The girls put on costumes and painted there faces and went nuts.
I'm still not sure about going trick-or-treating this year. We're both vaccinated, but they are too young. Most years, a lot of the houses usually put the candy out on tables at the end of their driveways and "tailgate" so it's pretty fun, but I'm worried about everyone breathing all over each other even though it will be outdoors. I don't know everyone well enough to assume they will take necessary precautions.
My wife has always hated Halloween but has become surprisingly enthusiastic this year now that we have a one year old to dress up. I think she's decided the baby will be Kris Kross this year.
My youngest is 10, and has an older brother, so mom was able to force coordination a lot in the early years:
2011- A parrot (big bro was a pirate)
2012 - a Dalmatian (bro was a fireman)
2013 - Toothless from How to train your dragon (mom made costume)
2014 - Superman (with added musculature -- reused from big bro)
2015 - Darth Vader (along with 10 other boys in his class)
2016 - astronaut (A trip to Kennedy Space Center earlier in the year)
2017 - Starlord from Guardians of the Galaxy (mask and jacket sold him at the store)
2018 - Daniel Larusso (We were early adopters of Cobra Kai on Youtube)
2019 - werewolf (another big bro re-use)
2020 - a skeleton (found a mask at the Spirit store he loved)
2021 - currently Marty McFly, but could change in two weeks.
I was going to stay out of the comments because I am not a Halloween person, and I know it's just a throwaway comment, but I am _fascinated_ by the porch geese phenomenon - I had no idea! (and this is despite still getting physical copies of the Atlantic, which seem to disappear into some kind of "print news Bermuda Triangle" with the New Yorker when my wife lays hands on them.
Also, I tried to explain to my wife that Halloween in Florida is total bullshit and she does not believe that it is any different anywhere else when it is CLEARLY a bigger to-do up north.
I have a few questions:
1. what do you do with the old costumes? do they get thrown away immediately or stashed in the attic for 5 years first?
2. is it around 3, 3.5 when they decide they want to choose their own costumes? If so, this might be our last one making the call (eek!)
3. do you dress up with your kids?
P.S. - we have a neighbor that decorates an owl statue in different outfits all year round.
P.P.S. - I am a 37 year old adult who is getting his wisdom teeth removed next Friday (double eek!)
As someone who loves Halloween, but hates putting effort into costumes or comes up with things late, most of them are weird idiot results.
One year in college, Jackie, Dressed In Cobras, I wore my friend Jackie's clothes and pinned a bunch of rubber snakes to my hoodie. Never have safety pins on during a college party.
Grad school departmental costume contest? Aristocrat. Judicial wig, cat ears, tail, suit, oh wait, I went to grad school in Birmingham Alabama and it was like 95F during the day and I died.
Rudolf the Redneck Reindeer. This one sort of explains itself, but I wore it to a small party that no one else dressed up for, and through some miscommunication resulted in the absolute destruction of my grad school friend group that continues to this day, more than a decade later.
Now I just buy a bunch of candy and hope any kids will come by. Most year it's at most 1. Why do I like this holiday again.