I've been counting down to October 31 since August. Officially, I do not celebrate Halloween. My family's conviction about this day was always that we didn't support it. We either went to our church's Fall Festival (a "Halloween alternative") or we went out to eat while people threw eggs or smashed pumpkins against our house. We were the neighborhood Halloween grinches.
Neither Melissa nor I cared enough about the Fall Festival to dress up. Save a few years in my early childhood, I never donned a costume. I'm not complaining - just telling it like it is. Even though I understood the reasons we didn't participate in Halloween and I agreed with them, it was really hard as a kid to honor my parents in this. So I made myself hate, hate, Halloween. I despised everything about it. Then I married Curtis, who grew up with different views on the day. He and I butted heads on what our family activities would be every year at the end of October. I kind of had the attitude that if I didn't get to, there was no way in heck my kids were going to. (I know how mature that sounds.) He couldn't fathom that we wouldn't dress up our kids and take them to the homes of friends and family to trick or treat.
The first year of our marriage I decided that fall and harvest were something to celebrate and welcome. I bought some pumpkins - a vegetable the Lord has made - to put on my porch. That simple practice began to give me joy every October. For me, it was in anticipation of Thanksgiving. I even began buying candy in case some children stopped by before we left for whatever Halloween Replacement Activity we had going on that year.
Three weeks after we moved here, my dear friend Jennifer, our awesome children's minister, asked Curt and I to emcee the children's costume contest at Fallapalooza (our fall festival). We gladly accepted her invitation. On a whim the day before, I decided we needed to wear costumes ourselves. That year, for the first time since I was probably 8 years old, I dressed up. I was Pocahontas and Curtis was a cowboy. It was so much fun! The 8-year-old in me loved it! To my great delight, I found immediate favor with several of the children at church because I had been the one to give them their little ribbons and prizes.
Last year we continued the tradition. I bought a Princess Guinevere dress for myself well in advance and I forced Curt to be a knight. He wanted to be a hippie but the girl hippie costume made me look fat(ter). I was determined to match. Two weeks later when Fallapalooza arrived, my pregnant self didn't look that great in my burgundy velvet Princess Guinevere costume. So I was a Pocahontas again. And Curt was a knight. This year, with my figure back to normal and with an adorable infant to show off, I began planning (very) early for October 31. I was tempted to be Pocahontas just to continue the tradition and dress Jackson accordingly, but I couldn't resist getting something new. I decided that Jackson and I would go as a princess and the frog prince. My dress is new. I felt like Guinevere's time had passed. Curt is going to be a computer geek. I was not allowed to even make a suggestion for his costume this year.
So tomorrow's the big day. Jackson's costume is made out of fleece and thankfully it's supposed to be cold. I'm dying to show the pictures I've already taken of him, but I'm making myself wait until tomorrow night. I'm so excited!