Thursday, October 29, 2009

Texan Mama's Halloween Costumes

Ah, it's a shame that I don't have any pictures for this post. I really wish I did, but unfortunately Texan Granny and Texan PawPaw have all the pictures from my childhood.

As a child, I always wished for one of those chintzy store-bought costumes. You know the ones: Wonder Woman, Strawberry Shortcake, Smurfette. Alas, a plastic mask with elastic string was not meant to be. I was forced to look through our supply of thread-bare costumes that had been passed down from child to child in my family. Or, I could use my imagination to come up with something that cost as little money as possible.

One year I was a robot.
(this is not actually me. My costume was way lamer.)

I took a couple of boxes and taped them together. Then I covered them with tinfoil and glued on some carefully cut-out construction paper pieces for buttons and levers. the costume was pretty good, until I actually had to walk. Which is kinda necessary when wanting to, you know, trick-or-treat. But once I got mobile, I figured out how to maneuver inside the confines of an ill-fitting cardboard box. What I didn't plan for was that moving in between bushes would cause my shiny roboty body to shed its skin (aka my aluminum foil covering was left in bits and pieces throughout the neighborhood).

A couple of years later, I decided to be... grapes.
(Again, not me. My trick-or-treat pail was usually a lame paper bag from Kroger.)
I got the brilliant idea of taking my favorite purple nightshirt and getting a bunch of purple balloons, then blowing them up and pinning them onto my purple shirt (by the knotted tails, of course). In retrospect, this costume would have worked a lot better if I'd had some friends to dress up along with me as maybe a banana or an apple or a pear. But it was just me, flying solo, as... grapes. Every door I knocked on asked me, "So where's the rest of the Fruit of the Loom gang?" Of course I had to explain, "I am NOT a part of the Fruit of the Loom gang. I am just grapes." At the tender age of 9, I didn't know how to just laugh and say, "Heh heh, good one." Everything was deadly serious to me.

I've done all the typical costumes: Indian girl, clown, cowboy, baby, cheerleader, hula girl. I am so painfully unoriginal.

Halloween was never about the costume for me, though. It was always about the candy. Reese's, Hershey's, Kit Kat, those are the hat trick at Halloween for me. And, one thing I loved to do was to dump out all my candy on our ping-pong table when I was done trick-or-treating, and my brother would do the same. Our booty was separated by the 4-inch-high green nylon net. THEN... the wheeling and dealing would begin. "I'll give you my Mounds for your Baby Ruth." "Hmm, throw in a 3 Musketeers and you've got a deal." You get the idea.

And, I'm wondering, what's up with the candy hand-out? I'm actually glad that I take my kids around house to house, so I don't have to hand it out. I mean, when I was a kid, ya got ONE piece of candy per house. Nowadays, some people hand out small bags packed with goodies! I mean, who can afford that? I guess some people get really into Halloween, but why does "really enjoying a holiday" have to mean "spending more than is necessary or smart?"

Uh, is there a word for a person who's a scrooge at Halloween? Maybe Jason Vorhees? I guess that's me.

This post is from MamaKat's Writing Workshop. C'mon and play along!


Foursons said...

Hahaa- I was expecting you to say all the balloons popped when you went through the bushes. :)

We don't hand out candy either- we're too busy begging at other people's houses. Last year one of my boys got a transformer. What?!

Aleta said...

Last year we had two options for the kids; Candy or Frosty coupon from Wendy's. I was REALLY shocked that the majority wanted the Frosty! How funny is that?? It was a piece of paper. I figured they'd go for the candy.

KK said...

I don't even turn my light on! It's not about being a scrooge so much as not wanting to walk to the door every 4 minutes!

Jennifer said...

I had out tons of candy. Almost as much as I eat.

Margaret aka: Fact Woman said...

I love your costume ideas. We always had to make our own, too. Looking back I'm glad aren't you? Have fun!

stephanie (bad mom) said...

I am also a Jason, as far as I only give one piece of candy per person and not treat bags or other fabulous prizes.

And, I make my kids get creative in our dress-up trunk. They actually do it all year long. Is that good or weird?

The (Un)Experienced Mom said...

LOVE the costumes! So creative. And I have to agree about the candy situation these days. I know some people who give out whole candy bars!!!!


Mama B said...

I too always wanted one of the plastic costumes "like everyone else had" because my mom always made ours. She caved one year and let me buy one(first grade). Least memorable Halloween ever. There is something to be said for homemade!

Bridgett said...

Those are awesome!! And as for scrooge/Jason, you could always try to make them follow St. Louis traditions and tell a joke/sing a song/do a trick. My girls have some bad jokes. And Sophia is going to do the treble jig. We make 'em earn the candy up here.