Remember those Halloween costumes from the 80’s?
The ones with a slit for a mouth that temped you to stick your tongue through, yet would slice the tip right off if you weren’t careful? Those dreadful plastic smocks that you wore over your sweatshirts and sweatpants (because mom didn’t want you to freeze to death in the late October chill). The “costume” was printed on the smock. I was a Cabbage Patch Doll, a Smurf, and I believe, a Care Bear in those wretched things before I moved on to a kinder, gentler costume. Okay, only the fabric was kinder and gentler.
When our son’s first Halloween rolled around, I was determined he wouldn’t suffer the same plastic fate. I wanted him to have happy costume memories. Ones that were filled with Pottery Barn Kids images. Ones that didn’t involve stitches to the end of his tongue. So of course, we ponied up the cash to purchase the most adorable turtle costume ever laid eyes on. The following year I snagged a cozy monkey costume from Old Navy, complete with a banana sticking out of the pocket. Both were warm, soft, and injury free. I was happy he was adorable and he was happy he had candy.
Then I turned into a bad parent. The kind of parent who forgets Halloween is even on the calendar. I mean, we aren’t big into decorating for the holiday at our place. I throw a few pumpkins on the porch and call it good. I am more a Christmas kind of gal. Somehow on our son’s third Halloween, we were taken by surprise. What’s worse, this year he knew it was coming. We couldn’t lock the door and pretend it wasn’t happening.
What’s a mom to do?
I scavenged his closet for ideas, stumbled across his Detroit Tigers jersey and cap. Add in a blue pair of sweatpants pulled up to the knee, knee socks and a baseball glove-bam! Instant costume! Not to be caught in the same position the next Halloween, I ordered a fancy Buzz Lightyear costume in June. Yes, June. What? I was not about to be bad mom two years running. He adored the Buzz costume. For nearly one year after the last piece of sticky candy disappeared from the house, he still strapped on those wings to fly around and be Buzz. Worth every penny.
Last year, he decided (through some prompting) to be Freddie the Falcon from BGSU. In the beginning I thought it would be easy-peasy. Brown sweatshirt jacket, brown sweatpants, his jersey, a pair of orange shorts, and some homemade wings and a tail.
Granted, he was adorable, looked much like the Freddie I remember from my college years, and shook a tail feather with the best of them. But if I ever run into a brown piece of felt again, it will be too soon!
So, this month we asked our now kindergartner what he would like to be for Halloween. We were saying silent prayers to the costume gods that it would be cheap, require no crafting, and be easy to put on. In his closet now hangs “The Amazing Spiderman” costume. Two seconds to slip it over his little self and he is transformed.
He is happy. We are happy. Life is grand. Now, if someone can help me convince him we don’t need to carve the guts out of a pumpkin, this Halloween will be perfect. (oh, and make sure to give this Amazing Spiderman some Kit-Kats, his momma really loves them)
Jennifer is the author of Midwestern Momma. Lover of family, bright colors, loud music and photography. Disliker of broccoli, storms and muddy March days. Get in touch with Jennifer via e-mail or follow along on her social sites.
Sara Beth Photography