As the holidays approach, I was thinking about how we measure joy! A mish mash up of emotions arrive.  Maybe it is a bit of panic starting to set in or maybe it is this head cold. 

  Halloween is the easiest holiday for me, mischief, tricks n' treats and some Cheese popcorn make me happy. It didn't use to be, that easy!   Daughter always would change her mind about her costume.   I remember one year-I truly wanted to scream.  I had  found a black dress, the top half with colorful polka dots. We had mouse ears, she was going to be Minnie Mouse. I had her costume out, adding some big chunky pearls, when she announced  
"No, Mama I don't want to be Minne."   And the melt down began.

    "You have other costumes, dress up as a ballerina or a witch." I did my best, Wizard of Oz witch    
      "No, I want to be a princess."   I looked through everything we had...nothing. We were staying with my Mom. My husband was on a DDG Naval ship headed to Hawaii. In a few months we would fly out to join him.  We were limited, to what fit in our suitcases n' carry-ons.

 This was not my finest moment. I had a bag of clothing, to drop off at the thrift shop. It was stuff the kids had out grown and we were busy with the move and house inspection.   I also  had to run to the grocery store.  As I drove around, I spied the Salvation Army big blue bin.   I thought ok, I will drop them here.  As I approach the  bin, I see this gown.  It is royal purple and has lace,  it is full n' long.  I toss the bag in and grab the gown and run.  Oh, yeah I did!   My daughter sees me, oh, damn!   My son is with her in the parked car, I have the keys. I also moved the vehicle near the bin, so I can see them.  Son is old enough to watch her for a few minutes. She is 3yrs. n' he is 10.  Just so you don't think this is the horror of my story. 

 "What is that Mama?  I saw you...what is that purple thing?"  she kept asking me over and over again.  Now guilt is setting in, but my drop off bag is huge and it is Halloween. I do not have time to take two hungry children to Sal's and shop, rush home get ready for trick or treat.    I told my daughter it is for you.  I knew I had to  make one more stop. I drove to Sal's.  I ran in and made a donation-goodbye guilt.  We arrived home, lugged in groceries and I rushed to wash the gown.

   I cut the bottom off , to fit a 3yr old.  It did fit, but was a big bit in the middle, of course.  So, I tied a scarf my Mom had, around Angela's tummy.  "Mama I do not have a crown?"   Angela scowled.

"You are a Lady in Waiting" I declared.  I didn't bother to explain and she didn't ask.  I ran out on my Mom's back porch and grabbed this clear, plastic cylinder. It fit over a jewelry box-Mom had in a pile, to give to a friend. "Sorry, Mom, but I need this."   I grabbed a glue gun and glued the extra trim of the gown on the plastic crown, then attached some gold trim, I had found.  Grammie took Angela to find some jewelry, while I started dinner.   She was thrilled... yah!   Mom mentions, maybe we should trick or treat, Dorothy first. An elderly lady who really wants to see the kids, but will go to bed early.

 We go to Dorothy's first.   Dorothy recognized my son's costume. He dressed up as Dracula and had the waxy vampire teeth.   She asked my daughter, "What are you a princess?"
"No, I am a Lady in Waiting!"  Angela declared and placed her hands on her hips.
"What are you waiting for?"  Dorothy laughed.
"Why candy of course."  
We all howled with laughter-well yes candy, of course!  

How do your measure joy during the holidays?  Do you laugh things off?  Do you raid bright blue bins?   What was one of your favorite Halloween memories?  And yes, Angela still changes her mind about her costume. Last year, she wanted to enter a Halloween costume contest, at school.   So, you know what I did...?  No, I didn't raid a blue bin, lol.  I went and bought her a store bought Flapper costume.  She didn't argue and loved it~ It was her first store bought costume.   I haven't dared, to ask about this Halloween-go as Lady Gaga...I have plenty of feathers and fake fur around here. Worst case there is bacon in the meat draw....


Ella said… scared me! lol
Hi Alex!
Sherry Blue Sky said…
You are such a good mom, and so creative. The princess gown was MEANT for her! You reminded me of one Hallowe'en when I was eight or nine. My mom was NOT the kind of mom who cared about costumes for Hallowe'en and there was no such thing as buying one - God forbid! So that year she threw an old white sheet over my head with two eyeholes. It was way too long and I kept stepping on it going up all the steps so soon it was one BIG hole all down my front. They still gave me candy. Hee hee. I was such a geek.

Your son reminded me of one year when Jeff was only about nine or ten when he was upstairs readying his costume for a long time. He had wrapped himself in strips of sheet like mummy. It looked great. Come to think of it, it was likely his bedsheet. I was not clever with costumes either.
Mary said…
You are a hoot, Ella. I have never raided bright blue bins. I am totally not a costume person. I am a what you see is what you get person. I think that is my costume. I always trick or treated as myself, or perhaps wearing a cowboy hat. I love that my granddaughter gets into 'costume.' I enjoy it through her.
Ink in the Book said…
My funniest Halloween memory? Ha! All I remember is my costume was itchy! Itchy because, while I don't remember what I dressed up like, I remember the itch. And I remember what itched me...

I needed boobs, and for whatever reason, I got a wig stuffed under my dress so I could have boobs.

Hence, the itch!!!!
Ciara said…
I need you to make a Steampunk costume for me. :) The holidays tend to drive me over the deep end. On Christmas morning I take a deep breath. It's always awesome that the work is done.
Heaven said…
I must say your header is gorgeous ~

My daughter knows what she wants for the Halloween...Me, I have no patience, just buy whatever is convenient. Hope you are enjoying the lovely season ~
Cynthia said…
Yum....cheese popcorn! I think your daughter is lucky to have a mom like you who would do all this for her.
Hart Johnson said…
Teehee--Oh, Ellie, you've given me a PTSD episode. I remember those years battling about costumes. Our problem was usually that daughter thought it wasn't really a costume if we didn't BUY IT but we never really had money for that and I am WAY too cheap. I am definitely a thrift store and crafting costume woman, too. My best costume was probably my black widow costume--made the legs of a cardboard box, Christmas garland (to make the legs hairy) and black spraypaint. Oh... and red felt on my belly for the mark...
Ella said…
Hart-You n' I could have fun painting the town many colors! I'm a thrifty girl-make the costume using what you have or find at the local thrift shop. All my daughter wanted was a damn store bought costume. I loved the challenge, but hated the smell of $tore bought and the prices. You look more the part, when you use real clothes and make up, not plastic and vinyl. I love your costume-now that is my kind of magic!
I love that you shared~ My favorite costume was me as a woodland witch. I had a stick for a cane, moss in my hair, teased of course and sprinkled in baby powder. I also blacked out a few teeth and wore old drab clothes, gray, faded black and brown. A real fright!
Son's best was Dr. Dreadful-I even bought plastic flies and glued them on this lab coat(thrift shop trench coat) He had bug eyed glasses and a Einstein like fun! I love that you put red felt on your belly! :D lol
Thank you for sharing!

Cynthia-Cheese corn rocks! You cook popcorn in oil on the stove.(the old fashion way) Take the cheese packet out of the mac n' cheese box(U know ;D) and sprinkle it on. I shake the bowl and try to get a lot of the corn covered~ enJOY! I buy the box, just for the powder. No, the other stuff that comes in a spice jar and says Cheese powder-isn't good, too salty~ I've tried it :D

Heaven-Me is a good choice, but can overwhelm. Whatever works for you both is always best! :D
Thank you~

Ciara-oooh,run to the thrift shop!
Hart n' I can help you out, lol.
I would go buy a full dress and tear the stitched in tulle slip. I have a black one. Then you could stitch or glue on watch parts and other gizmos. Get some springs at your local home improvement store and wear them as earrings or make a necklace with nuts n' bolts. Go black or brown and add some goggles! Some old watches strapped here and there and some black boots! Here is a site: *that black under skirt slip would rock with parts on it! :D
Deep holiday at a time! right ;D

InkintheBook-How dreadful! YOU remind me of the year I went as Cousin It. My hair was so long I wore it over my face with glasses. I got itchy and couldn't see. That is awful...did you get hives?
Hairy boobs not sock ones...that is awful~ I'm itching thinking about it~yikes!

Mary-I love that about you! I soo love to dress up~ My husband is almost 6'4 and has auburn hair. I bought a wolf hat last year and a red cape. Guess who Red was? ;D
enJOY those fun!

Sherry-I can see you! Now, all I can think of is Charlie Brown's ghost~ Thanks for sharing and as long as you went n' got candy, all is good! :D lol I can see that-
Mommy will think I am a clever Mummy-ought oh~ So fun to remember!
Now, I can smell those plastic masks...eeewww! I wore them-till I was old enough to make my own costumes. Hated them! And that is what I kept from my children-ok tried! lol