Posts Tagged ‘Halloween’

October: Ghosts of Halloween Past

October 29, 2015

Here in southeast Idaho we’ve enjoyed one of the mildest Octobers on record. The Fall colors have been exquisite. I’ve captured lots of photos on walks through our neighborhood and around town.

What, another photo?

What, another photo?

Tautphaus Park:



The brilliant trees lining South Boulevard:

October 23

October 23

Community Park:

Some folks get right on the leaf detail


Halloween decorations begin to appear. We watch a fenced graveyard evolve on regular walks past one house. The man constructing the graveyard was out there one day when we passed by. He said it takes him 6 weeks to put it up, one day to take down.

Enter if you dare...

Enter if you dare…

Totally worth it!

Are you going creepy



Or kid-friendly?

Warm fuzzy's

Warm fuzzy’s

Megan and I pulled our Halloween box out this past Tuesday. The box must be 30 years old. Over the years, we haven’t thrown much away. Whatever we take out, add, or put away again, ends up on top. We rarely disturb the bulky lower contents of the box – old masks, costumes, accessories, unused decorations…

Out comes the paper plate spider Megan made in grade school.


and the huge hairy spider now hanging in the doorway to the den

how 'bout a head massage?

how ’bout a head massage?

Mr. Skeleton on the buffet

Yes, I'm very much alive

Yes, I’m very much alive

Our sound-activated Ghost comes out. You might recognize him …



the Brooklyn accent-talking ‘Stretch’ from the 1987 movie ‘Casper.’

Oh crap, he needs new batteries!

Yeah, you try getting the screw out

Yeah, you try getting the screw out

10 minutes later I know for sure, I don’t have the right screwdriver to open up the battery compartment.

Oh, and I’ve torn Stretch’s torso in half in the process…

Yes, that'ring of hot glue sitting on he counter is supposed to be holding the ghost together

Yes, that ring of hot glue now sitting on the counter is supposed to be holding the ghost together

Stretch is dead

When's the funeral?

When’s the funeral?

So we’re finished putting out our decorations



– time to carry the box back downstairs to the basement…

Oh no!

the guts of the box

the guts of the box

What the …

The old box gave way…

Nice 'coming unglued' visual

Nice ‘coming unglued’ visual

The box came unglued … and then unravelled. You know, like humans do. Dumb 30+-year-old worn out box!


I plucked my old mask from the heap of stuff pooled at the bottom of the stairs. Although the mask may be 20 years old, it makes me look about 200 years old.

Oh, and here’s Ben’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle costume from … Kindergarten??? (26 years ago)

Ninja Turtles might make a comeback?

Ninja Turtles might make a comeback?

And legs to Aaron’s 2nd grade spider costume


Okay, well, I had to model the next great find:


No recollection here of anyone being an m&m. No idea where this thing even came from. Cousin to the Raisins? What year is that?

Last but not least, the most worthless Halloween costume accessory on the planet- witches fingers.

my hands qualify well enough without the fingers

my hands qualify well enough without the fingers

Renders the uniquely human quality of ‘opposing thumbs” completely non-operational. Heck, you can’t even scoop candy out of a bowl to give to trick-or-treaters with these puppies on. Believe me, I’ve tried it. That’s why they settled to the bottom of the box, like, twenty years ago. And stayed there.


October 16, 2009
Ian, Ben, Nick, Aaron and Neil

Ian, Ben, Nick, Aaron and Neil

Beware … Halloween is near! This is a photo of our sons and friends at a neighborhood Halloween party back in 1993. They had congregated at our house and thrown together costumes using stuff from our Halloween box, which still sits in a cobwebby corner of our basement.

Hey! Halloween falls on a Saturday night this year – WOO-O-O-O-HOO-O-O-O! – and maybe you oughtta be thinking about your costume! I have given mine some thought: Depending on my mood, I will either be a ‘slug,’ ‘vegetable,’ ‘bag lady,’ ‘witch,’ ‘pampered wife,’ … one of these (check it out), or, ‘Queen Josephine.’

I’ll be home Halloween evening with my husband who, in meshing with my mood, and/or costume, might be a ‘couch potato,’ ‘bookworm,’ ‘remote control operator,’ ‘hobo,’ ‘millionaire,’ ‘King David,’ or … ‘James Bond.’ ‘Prince Charming’ would work magnanimously well, especially, if, for some obvious, or inexplicable reason, I am a ‘witch.’

Anyway, our daughter, Megan, has been invited to a Halloween party and she needs a costume. What to be for Halloween? Our box in the basement is still crammed with stuff that should have gone to Goodwill long ago, because I doubt Megan or I ever again will be a Ninja Turtle, a gigantic M&M, Zorro, a six-year-old Pirate, Mad scientist (with those goofy, coke-bottle, headache-inducing glasses), wear an aligator nose, or drape discarded white sheets, reeking of ‘basement’ over our heads, with two cut-out holes for the eyes that never stay put so the flesh of your nose is sticking out of your ghost-face and you bump yourself senseless getting out the door, into the night, after the loot.

So Megan and I started brainstorming costume ideas – ‘witch’ and ‘hippie’ were ‘out’ for her, she said, as was ‘angel,’ ‘fairy,’ or ‘cat.’ Geez!, there had to be something half-way original! So I checked out the Internet. Now, I don’t know, the last time I searched online the costumes seemed more … innocent, or certainly, reflective of a less complicated time. Step aside, ‘starlets’, ‘Star Wars characters’ and ‘Spiderman!’ – and make way for … ‘Octomom?’ (Check it out!)

Hey! I’m all over this costume! It’s simple, and I don’t want to drag our Halloween box out of storage, if I can prevent it. For your ‘Octomom’ costume you wear your t-shirt, flip-flops and jeans and just add lips (big ones), long black hair, and eight baby dolls. You could probably get the dolls at the dollar store, except one aspiring ‘Octomom’ would likely clean them out of babies — unless they’ve ordered hundreds of them, in anticipation of Halloween Octomom’s popularity. Oh, and you’ll need some duct tape or a bag or some way to tote your babies – Octopus tentacles???

Admittedly, it’s not the most comely costume … Might look appropriate on grandmothers, since so many are raising their grandkids, anyway. Young girls dressed as ‘Octomom’ wouldn’t come off as wholesome and inspiring as, say, young ‘Amelia Erharts,’ although hauling eight bald-headed babies around for the duration of your Saturday-Halloween-Night-Party-Extravaganza might prove a strong and thoughtful deterrent to stopping in the graveyard on the way home to cuddle with Dracula…

I never plan too far ahead for Halloween on account of one never knows what the weather is going to do. Last year it turned out to be nice – and two days before Halloween I finally did acknowlege its coming, dug out the Halloween box, scattered a few decorations about, carved a pumpkin with Megan, and bought some candy for the trick-or-treaters. Except, I hid the candy from myself and didn’t find it again until three weeks later, stuffed into a basement shelf.

Megan still hasn’t decided on a costume. She is totally not amused by ‘Octomom.’ She was a ‘witch’ last year. This year she could be a ‘rock star,’ or an ‘orphan,’ or a ‘sack,’ or ‘Pippi Longstocking,’ or a ‘Princess’…

I just hope between, say, October 28 and October 31 nature doesn’t come trick-or-treating at our door as the ‘Abominable Snowman.’ Well, if that does happen, then we’ll all just dress up like Laplanders.