Apparently Christmas is not the only season for miracles. I am married to one of the most introverted men in the world and look what he agreed to wear with me to our friends’ Halloween party.
In vain I tried to get him to learn some of the most memorable cheers Will Ferrell and Cheri Oteri performed as these SNL characters, but I had already extended him far enough with the red polyester pants. In case it is not clear which child takes after which parent, Connor had the face punch from the Funky Cold Medina routine down.
Connor decided he really wanted to wear Ethan’s old ninja costume. I love how he views the older brother hand-me-downs as prized treasures instead of the used leftovers they truly are. One day he may no longer think it is the best thing to get Ethan’s old things; he may wonder why his brother always gets the new bikes/clothes/costumes/jackets/etc. Until then, I will glory in his innocent appreciation of the discarded.
Ethan finally decided that he wanted to be a Chicago Bears player this year. I wanted him to wear his Hester jersey and call it a day, but he asked his slacker mom to at least try to get him to look more like a real player by investing in a helmet. I ordered a generic Bears costume that fortunately arrived just in time for the school’s Spooky Story Night.
Another mom friend of mine told me how she had put their last name on her son’s NFL costume for a previous Halloween. It was a great idea but would require me to leap outside my comfort zone. On the day of Spooky Story Night I found myself once again inside Jo-Ann Fabrics. The last time I was in there was two years ago for The (epic) Quest for Critter. Talk about spooky. It’s not easy being a non-crafty mom in a Pinterest world, but sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do for the love of your offspring. After wandering aimlessly like the Israelites in the desert, I finally found iron-on letters. Just hours before my son would have to wear it, I pulled down my dusty iron and broke its once a year usage trend. Somehow I followed the directions and managed to be successful in ironing on Beckett AND the number 9. (Ethan had wanted to be number 96. Those numbers were large. After 7 letters, I was maxing out on my ironing ability so number 9 it was.) I have to say that I was feeling quite proud of my major accomplishment.
After that crafty feat, I went to Spooky Story Night feeling like I could run a marathon, climb Mount Everest, balance the nation’s budget AND organize a future school cake walk again (well, maybe not the cake walk). Then 20 minutes later as I’m admiring all the cute costumes, I discover that a mom and her 2nd grader SEWED her ENTIRE costume from SCRATCH together. I just got schooled by a 2nd grader. I was back to getting comfortable in my slacker identity after 20 minutes of delusional thinking.
Still, I will say that I am glad I ventured outside my comfort zone and attempted what I would consider out-of-character for me. Who knows? Maybe I’ll be sewing the boys’ costumes from scratch next year. (Yeah, right.) Sometimes we find ourselves doing things out of the ordinary, and those times can be satisfying indeed.
Never would I have imagined myself cooking Korean food as much as I have since moving to Albuquerque, but given the limited choices here, I have. And it has turned out to be (mostly) a great new adventure. Ethan’s birthday is the week before Halloween and the night before my crafting extravaganza I found myself making him seaweed soup (miyuk guk), the traditional Korean birthday meal. The boys love mussels so I decided to use them for the soup’s protein. The guy at the seafood counter packed the 20 or so mussels on crushed ice inside a plastic bag. He instructed me not to close up the bag all the way or they would die. (Aren’t they going to die eventually?) I followed his instructions as I grabbed a few more items. The bagger at check out repeated those careful instructions and gently placed the high-maintenance mussels on top of my bag. As I loaded the rest of the low-class bagged items into my trunk, I placed that opened plastic bag of ice and Paris Hilton protein in the front seat next to me. Should I have buckled them up? Those 20 mussels were like my new children. I wondered if I should name them and ask them what they wanted to be for Halloween. Is this what the Duggars feel like? All it took was Connor to remind me that they are still what we planned to devour. Even after I said that I had kept them alive up to that point with the utmost care, he threw those bad boys inside the soup with gusto. “Now they’re dead!” as they started opening up. I felt somewhat conflicted and almost called the first one Wilbur.
I ironed 7 letters and 1 huge number for my son’s costume (I IRONED!!). I cook Korean food on a regular basis. I run regularly for fun (FUN!!). I go hiking with my family. My husband was a cheerleader for Halloween. MY HUSBAND WAS A CHEERLEADER FOR HALLOWEEN. People can always change. Miracles do happen.