Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Celebrating Halloween

This post, quite honestly, might have been easier to write before actual halloween happened. And all its lovely/terrible chaos and meltdowns and cold-sprinkly rain. The main problem was that Captain Hook was so-awfully grouchy. Epic grouchiness, which I suppose we should have expected from a pirate. We then combined a grouchy-pirate with many, many neighborhood children and their younger siblings along with their mentors. Add in hot dogs and smores and wild tire swings and rain that makes the back-yard bonfire decidedly less-fun. And I'll just go ahead and tell you, Peter Pan was not happy.

BESIDES all of that, though, we generally love halloween around these parts. Partly because it offers Adam a great excuse to be weird and make everyone laugh at his craziness, which is absolutely his favorite thing (See exhibits A, B, and C).

Beyond Adam's opportunity to be ridiculous, we love halloween for the ways it brings together our neighborhood. I love a chance to be for something, to be for handing out treats and hugs, and walking together down cracked sidewalks hand-in-hand. For meeting new neighbors and laughing with old ones. For knocking on all the doors, and offering hugs from Tinkerbell and Captain Hook in exchange for mini-snickers bars.
 Yes, he is a real Marine and we could not be prouder of him.
 Caden wore this same chicken costume three halloweens ago, still my heart.
Kids dance around in their costumes and knock on our door into inappropriately late hours of the night. The rag-tag crew all peers around the corner past the bowl of candy to say hi to Adam and I shush them because our own kids have collapsed into bed with post-sugar-crashes hours ago. They all remind me of their names (even though I insist I remember, of course!) because they moved away; but came back to trick-or-treat and knew we would have candy. Actually, we dont, but I steal some
for them from my own kids' stashes, because isnt that what tonight is all about?

Tonight is a chance to learn not to be afraid of others. To embrace the teenagers without costumes and the kids in Jason masks, the neighbors we know and the ones we dont. To share bounty and tiny candy bars abundantly.
 Not to mention, seeing your children dressed in the cutest costumes in all the land.
So we know that the chaos and craziness of this many children who are boxers and princesses, and grown-ups wearing bumblebee costumes and cat-ears, we know the chaos tonight is ok. Even if this is far less than half the group, and they all end up coming inside later because of the rain. And even if the house is a disaster because someone had to sew herself a peter pan hat and therefore had no time for cleaning up the place.
Because that's why I love Halloween, it really just comes down to throwing open our doors to whoever knocks. To building community in small and big ways by walking down streets together, to crossing the street with Mr. Smee, and introducing yourself to the neighbors who just moved in. 

4 comments:

  1. We love Halloween for all the above reasons, although it was a long time getting to this point ourselves, being raised as anti-Halloween types. We love having a potluck with the street and then heading out together to go trick or treating, and meeting new neighbors is the best. And somehow I'm able to remember what people dressed up as last year and that gives me easy access into conversation. Love this!

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  2. The chaos was worth it. The kids (and adults) all had a great time! We love you guys and appreciate that you opened your home to all us crazy monsters. :-)

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  3. I love every word.
    But mostly I just love you and your precious family.

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  4. Exactly what Lori Harris said!!

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