I guess I’ve got a chip on my shoulder when it comes to kid Halloween. Every year I get annoyed that there are scary, inexplicable decorations everywhere, spooking Harper. (The other day at the children’s museum — “Why there’s a hand there, Mama?” “Oh, you know. Just a really fun severed hand floating in some fake formaldehyde as a hilarious joke. Whee!”) She also hates masks and face paint, although she did manage gather up the bravery today at playschool to get her nose painted pink. Then there’s the candy situation. Why would I want strangers to give my kid a bunch of terrible junk food I don’t really want her to eat at all? Why? And let’s not forget the costume situation, which just reminds me of what a non-crafty mama I really am. Maybe it’s the deep-seated costume-wariness of a bespectacled person. Glasses really make costumes impossible. I’m probably the only person in the world or at least Park Slope who wants Sarah Palin to jump into the Republican primary race — just because she’s a good costume for me, people, that’s it.
Still, over the course of the day I admit that my Halloween grinchiness was melted away. Harper was delighted with the morning’s costumes, invented by her: Charlie and Lola.
I was proud of her for this costume idea. First of all, it’s literary and almost entirely unrecognizable by the general public, and thus, my kind of costume. Second of all, it included her brother, which melted my Halloweeny heart. Third of all, it was easily thrown together, consisting of normal and rewearable clothes. I mean, am I an unfun Mom or what.
This costume was perfect for the morning at school — after all, it’s just clothes. And Harper really really liked pretending to be Lola all day. She demanded a lot of pink milk, addressed me as Marv or sometimes Minnie, and got into zany mishaps with an invisible Lotta. Good times!
But a few weeks ago a desire to also be a fairy princess was expressed. What IS a fairy princess? How does she know about them? I don’t know. All I know is, I placed an order with the brilliant Halloween seamstress that is my mother and a few days later a sweet, diaphanous, sparkly fairy dress arrived in the mail. Tiara, wings, and wand were obtained. Alton was squeezed into Harper’s old monkey costume.Costumes #2 were in full effect for evening.
Harper of course refused to wear the fairy princess getup. At trick-or-treating time we made our way out onto the street, Harper dressed as a cranky 2 year old who needed a nap. (A very convincing ensemble, I have to say.) But the magic smoke bubbles at the bakery across the street and hordes of costumed kids changed her mind, as did our accidental trick-or-treating on the way to her friend’s house. “Why he is giving me candy?” Harper kept demanding.
Finally we met up with Malka, her parents, and Adam. As usual, Malka and Harper whipped each other into a frenzy of giddiness, and soon Harper was racing around in her fairy princess costume which was good so I didn’t have to freak out on her about demanding it. The girls loved trick-or-treating, monkey-Alton fell asleep in the carrier, and the grownups got to feel charmed by brownstone Brooklyn in all its neighborhoody glory.
In conclusion… tiara+lollipops=really impressively tangled hair.