Last year, our Lego costumes were over the top and took countless hours. Although the we got all the bang for our buck…it is not something I am willing to do every year. So this year was an “off” year. Meaning, costumes come from closets and stores…and not by the sweat of my brow. Going into the season I thought I was okay with this idea – yet, each person that approached me telling me how excited they were to see our costumes made me wish more and more it was another “on” year. We set the bar a little high last year. We have people fooled that greatness comes every year which is just not the case. I think I disappointed more than a handful when I told them we were going to be pirates. But I have to keep telling myself – I have my sanity and spent limited time pulling together costumes which is exactly what I needed this year.
Hallie was the mastermind behind this year’s costumes. She wanted the family to dress together and I told her in order for that to happen she would need to convince each of her brothers of her idea. And she did just that in the kindest, non-pressuring way.
Hallie has been dying to wear this black petticoat skirt I’ve had in the closet for years and she finally got her chance. Cannon’s costume we’ve had for years, Hunter wore it when he was three years old. And as odds would have it – I found the exact costume on eBay in both Bennett and Hunter’s size new with tags. (which is amazing considering I bought that costume in 2009)
Can I just tell you how fun it is to be married to someone willing to dress up? Steve is always reluctant when an idea is presented but once he jumps in – he takes on the roll full heartedly. I’m sure he was a pirate in a previous life he was that good.
My mom was here to enjoy the evening with us and Steve’s parents came by to check out the costumes before we headed out.
We walked through the neighborhood to our Halloween block party where we ate dinner and admired all the clever costumes we came across. It gave me some great ideas for future Halloweens. Bennett was so-so on dinner but what he didn’t eat in chili he made up for in a king size crunch bar!
After dinner – we walked the short distance back to our house and trick-or-treated along the way. Hallie and Hunter on their scooters, Bennett in the wagon and Cannon in the stroller. Cannon was hilarious the entire night and he caught on really quick as to what was going on. He got so excited, he would bail from the stroller before it came to full stop just to try and get to the door sooner. He tripped and fell countless times in his rush and spilled his bag of candy three times. He was so friendly at every house singing songs and yelling thank you multiple times as he walked down the sidewalk. There could’ve been a hole in the bottom of his bag and he wouldn’t have noticed, it was the gathering of candy that was so fun for him.
We came home with way too much candy and because that wasn’t enough sugar we joined with some friends/family after for homemade doughnuts. I’ll take a homemade doughnut over candy any day!
The candy has been sorted, traded and rationed. Now, we’re all just coming down from the sugar high. Let the holidays begin!
I love when Halloween is on Saturday – it really prolongs the holiday which is okay by me. School/class activities take place on Friday (or in Bennett’s case Thursday) and then parties and trick or treating on Saturday – it’s a whole weekend affair!
Bennett had his parade and program on Thursday – He didn’t want to dress up but when I informed him candy was involved he was ready to go – minus his Jack Sparrow hair which he refused.
Friday morning was spent at the school – school costume parade and Hunter’s class party which I was in charge of. My mom was visiting so she was an involuntary volunteer!
It was funny to watch Hunter in the classroom standing at his desk for every activity while his classmates sat. He evidently works better standing up and I like that his teacher is okay with that!
While running Hunter’s party, I got a call from the school nurse saying Hallie was in the office. She had been accidentally hit with a hockey stick during PE and had chipped her tooth. Disappointed, but not surprised I went to the office to find her front tooth once again chipped.
The nurse was wondering how in the world Hallie and I were both so calm about such a dramatic change in her smile – I informed her this is a chipped tooth we’ve had repaired already three times and because the chip is so large the composite gets broken fairly easily. Eventually we will be able to do a more permanent repair but not until she’s older and done with orthodontics. We made an unexpected visit to Steve’s cousin, Paul Kelly, to have it repaired…again. Hallie was disappointed to miss the majority of her class party but grateful she didn’t have to go through the weekend with a sensitive tooth.
There’s never enough time and never enough fairy dust to make everything fun and magical for the kids during the holidays. I often find myself caught between practical mom and fun mom so I’m always looking for shortcuts. I discovered this shortcut 6 years ago preparing for Hallie’s 4th birthday party when I was running short on time and I needed a quick and easy Halloween treat. (So short on time that I even bought sheet brownies from Sams club!) It’s now an easy go-to when I’m looking for a festive treat and the generic mini-cupcakes stacked 10 rows high at Wal-mart just aren’t cutting it.
We’re enjoying the end of our fall break and looking forward to Halloween in just two weeks. Fall is my favorite season and it always goes too quickly.
The kids have picked out their costumes and the Halloween parties have already been scheduled with assignments made. We’re all a little excited. Here’s a couple links to some of our past Halloween fun.
My favorite homemade costumes ever.
Back to our Halloween costumes…from last year! The Lego costumes had bodies were made from cardboard, large furniture boxes. I measured a lego mini figure and proportionally made measurements based on everyone’s height to create a pattern. They were cut out using my jigsaw (yes, I used a saw for cardboard – it’s what I’m comfortable with!) and taped together on the inside and the outside using Gorilla tape. I first tried duct tape but it didn’t stick to the cardboard like the Gorilla tape did.
I initially thought I would quick spray paint all the bodies. But a trial run left me with undesirable results. The paint soaked into the cardboard and all you could see was the tape on the edges. Plan B: Cover the cardboard in fabric and paint the design on the fabric. Plan C: skip the bodies all together and wear clothing that represents the bodies. I was determined to make plan B work.
I didn’t think covering the boxes in fabric would be extremely difficult. However, I’m not a seamstress and I basically had to create slipcovers for each box with odd angles. The results were a long shot from being perfect but they were 100% better than plan A and still better than plan C.
With fabric covered boxes, I used our video projector showing lego guys to trace designs on the boxes. I then went to work painting each design with craft paint.
This was probably my favorite step out of the whole project. I remember Steve was out of the country the week before Halloween and all I had was cardboard box bodies somewhat put together before he left. As I painted late into each night he was gone, I saw the costumes coming together and it made excited. Each detail I painted added to authenticity and it wasn’t the chore I thought it would be. The task was more than rewarding and I watched some great movies in the process.
My mom came into town while Steve was gone and was with me while I painted a few of the bodies. She shook her head in disbelief that I was spending as much time as I was on each body. And although the word “crazy” escaped her lips more than once in describing the process (or perhaps referring to me in general) she pitched in and helped me out. Two of the costumes needed some pants to go with their bodies – and she sat at the sewing machine and whipped them out. Where was she when I was covering the boxes?!
By the time Steve arrived home just in time for Halloween, he was amazed by the finished product. The kids continually tried them on and loved them. The bodies and the heads sat on our dining room table in hopes of not being ruined before the big day and everyone that came to our house and saw them could not wait to see them in action.
Who could’ve predicted that we would have record heat (breaking 100) on Halloween. Those costumes were not meant for summer weather and our heads were a bit toasty. But the kids were troopers (aside from Cannon who was sick that evening and didn’t wear a costume at all!)
Just about everywhere we went – we were celebrities – we took a lot of pictures with random people. It was a fun night.
After Halloween was over they sat back on the dining room table until I could figure out what to do with them. I have high hopes of wearing them again someday – so they carefully sit wrapped in garbage bags in the attic awaiting to make their grand re-entrance!