Milestones at Halloween

We were working on an annual budget recently and I had to adjust the line for Birthday Parties – meaning parties we throw for our own children – because we may, fingers crossed, be past that now for our older two kids. We’re at the age now where they are okay with a little less fanfare, maybe one friend coming over for dinner, or just the family going to the movies, cake and a gift card to Google Play, and done. Sweet.

But on the other hand, we now have to take a net loss on Halloween candy. We get a lot of kids at our door – 329 last night, by my count – and that means I’m buying like, ten boxes of candy each October. But it used to kind of pay off, in that our kids brought home just about the same amount, and it lasted for a good six months or so, resulting in a kind of sugar balance around here.

This year our oldest two didn’t go out – they were kind of on the fence about it, but were leaning towards one last hurrah, but then, they both got sick, and so just stayed home instead. Now I notice we have a net candy deficit that is not helped at all by the fact that I am home today and binging my way through all the peanut-related and cheesie-related candy in the youngest’s bag. I’ve never had to do this before, but I might have to make a run to the Superstore later to see if I can get any day-after discount candy. Budget fail!

Speaking of Halloween, I was quite behind schedule this year – everything seemed to just creep up on me and I’ve been having trouble staying ahead of things. I was out with the Captain last week and he was all sniffy about Christmas stuff being out already, but I know from experience that one day it seems way too early, and then like, 24 hours later it’s a week to Christmas and I’ve done nothing. So I do appreciate the long lead time and many, many reminders about the upcoming date.

Since I was so lax about Halloween this year, we kind of didn’t get around to carving the pumpkins (in fact, I only just bought them a couple of days ago), which is why I found myself at 4 p.m. on Halloween itself frantically carving with my youngest (who had given me the Big Eyes And Trembling Lip – “Aren’t we going to carve the pumpkins, Momma?”). We ended up getting lots of compliments on our pumpkins and so if you find yourself in the same situation next year, may I recommend:

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Left to right: Ninja pumpkin – carve out eyes, then wrap with black ribbon, held in place with straight pins pushed straight through; Mummy pumpkin – cut holes, fill with eyeball ping pong balls from the dollar store, wrap with self-sticking bandage strip; Silly vampire pumpkin – cut hole for vampire teeth acquired at recent birthday party, cut paper for eyes, stick on with thumbtacks.

AND DONE.

Hope you had a happy Halloween!

5 thoughts on “Milestones at Halloween

  1. Love your pumpkins! I can barely cut butternut squash to cook, let alone carve a giant orange thing.

    I find the amount of candies/chips/chocolate bars people are giving absolutely insane. We did the trick-or-treat tradition in my in-laws’ suburb, because in our neighbourhood, kids are grownup and not much happens. We were close to you, actually (I think!). Anyway, after a block, Mark’s bucket was full, so we sent him to my in-laws where he handed out candies. I blame the industry… all you can buy is those giant Halloween cartons with hundreds of treats. Seriously…!

    (Sorry, speaking as a French here… I love the tradition, but less is more, right?)

  2. We get about 200 kids. This year we had about 170 candies and only about 120 kids showed. My mom, who is officially banned from taking kids trick or treating effective immediately (!) brought two empty bags along with the kids and returned with them with 4 full bags of candy. I almost had a heart attack! What am I going to do?? (I told mom, no extra bags next year or she’s staying home. lol)

    Turns out one of Ben’s hockey buddies had his appendix taken out the night before Halloween and was in no condition to go trick or treating, so he’s getting a generous bag from us. The rest….when the kids get bored, I’ll send them along with the professor to bribe his students at college. 🙂

    Love your pumpkins. Great idea!

    1. After Hallowe’en my chocolate chip cookies become whatever-kind-of-leftover-chocolate-chopped-into-pieces cookies. After Easter it’s the same with leftover Easter Eggs. My kids love the “surprise” cookies – you never know what will be in them – and it uses up the candy excess.

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