I Survived October: A pictorial editorial

The wait is over.

8 days in the making, one woman, many photos.

And now.... for the first time (this month) you get to scroll, and scroll and........ scroll.

Let's start with the obligatory jack-o-lantern shots shall we? Ooohhhhwow. I bet you haven't got your fill of those yet eh? Shut up, this is for posterity. I believe the children are our future. And children need pumpkin pictures.

I think the kids were particularly creative this year.

Finny loved it. Those faces are not for dramatic effect folks. That there is bona fide silent, involuntary gagging.

Aaron's shirt sympathized.

And then there was the annual church trunk or treat. Wherein Gracie went as a bunny which looked like a dog. The problem was that she was insistent on being a brown lop-eared bunny as a tribute to her beloved Thumper. And Thumper looks a lot like a dog herself. But she looked cute anyway. (I made her a tutu the night before because...well....I needed some frou-frou cuteness in my life). Benj and Gabe were Mario and Luigi, Finny was Harry Potter... again. I allowed it because a) we had the costume b)the costume involved nothing "scratchy" and no make-up save the lightning bolt tattoo. c) Finny makes the most cute Harry Potter EVER. Don't deny it.

Here is a romantic shot of Harry & Hermione. I always thought they were well-suited

I kept getting a spooky feeling as if I was not alone when I was handing out candy this year.... it must have been the 50 kids running around...yeah..that's it...

The next morning Gracie's costume arrived (I'm still praying for the crazy seller who sent the costume 2 weeks late, forcing my daughter to be a dog-eared bunny and also felt the need to repeatedly tell me how mad she was about the fact that she thought I was probably going to leave her negative feedback (even though I had told her I had no intention of doing so and had not at any time actually complained) for her poor customer service which was entirely my fault.

Gracie attended her school parade as Dorothy and later went trick or treating as the same. I am sure that you will agree that she made a lovely Dorothy. I am told that my trauma at the hands of jazmine97 (or whatever her digits were-God bless her) was worth it.

Following the school festivities the boys had their birthday party. Their birthday is on July 28th. So it made complete sense to celebrate it on October 30th. We've done it before, and we'll do it again, no doubt. It was a Hallowe'en themed birthday party. Because we are highly creative and think outside the box around this time of year.

It was pretty easy to make a coffin shaped envelope in which to shove this poor fellow

The making of the poor fellow himself was a little more time consuming but thanks to Martha and her marvelous printable template it was not hard. (The boys actually ended up assembling them all by themselves)

Hail, hail the gang's all here. Their friends are cool. Freaks, but in a good way.

The party was from 7-11pm and involved 13 children on illegal amounts of sugar who screamed for 99% of that time-frame.

When in doubt. Add sugar. Which brings us to:

The doughnut eating contest. Finny was wailing that was his was "just too high" when it was all over. When I saw photographic evidence of this fact I must admit I laughed even though I felt super sorry for him. (This travesty was rectified by just giving him a doughnut lately. Don't call CPS.)

Just when you are starting to get a headache, I highly recommend a game called, for our purposes, skeleton in the closet. First, you plunge the house into complete darkness and assign a "skeleton" to go and hide somewhere. Everyone else is instructed to go and look for him/her. But the trick is not to tip your fellow lookers off when you find the skeleton. Instead just silently slide in beside them while everyone else keeps looking. Eventually, you have a bit of a cramped situation. It makes for terrific (and quiet) fun. Until the inevitable roar at the end when the hapless last searcher finally makes their discovery.

My favourite was when I hustled Jessi into the bathtub and covered her with towels. Somehow 12 kids managed to find her anyway and wedge themselves in there with her (ok a few of the overflow got into the shower-which was cheating a bit, but considering tiny Jessi made it out from under the human avalanche that I had set her up for- alive- I wont split hairs).

Here's skeleton in the loft. It's looking a little precarious for the pirate there. I didn't say it was necessarily a safe game.

Happily the weather people were as inaccurate as always and the predicted all-day storms were replaced by a freakishly warm wind and mostly dry skies so they were not all stuffed into my little house for the duration. So they ran it off playing mummy tag or capture the mummy or some such thing (isn't halloween awesome-you can use regular games and just call them something spooky and there ya go..)

This is my friend Jill. Jill was enlisted to help because of her warden like presence. Be not fooled by her diminutive appearance. Mostly Jill was forced to come in order to entertain me. And to be my personal zombie for the night. But more on that later.

Jill was feeling unwell (you may be able to see that she had an encounter with a vampire earlier -funny how the scar only shows up in pictures, isn't it Jill? I must say it really left her with a certain...glow) On top of this were human ailments-she suffered very stoically through it all. All four screaming hours in which she attempted to prevent my house from being utterly destroyed. A noble attempt. I think she deserves chocolate. Or at the very least, a blood transfusion.

Back inside there was the serious business of team muffication in progress.

Gabe's team went for a clean and classic mummy

Benj's team was a little more avante garde.

Folks, I am devastated to tell you that there are no photographs of Dr. McManiac's horrible and creepy O.R. But I shall set the scene so that you can survive the loss. We brought them one at at time blindfolded with dripping/witches cackling soundtrack which will now haunt Jill's dreams having listened to it on repeat for the better part of an hour as she lay on the "gurney" covered with a sheet. Then I made them identify body parts with their hands to prove their worthiness of being an assistant at our graveside surgeries. Their trembling hands were thrust into bowls of pumpkin innards (nasty), jello, tiny frankfurters and braided pretzels as they made their guesses. These ranged from brains to bones.

Their blindfolds were then removed to reveal my hideousness (slightly enhanced by a really creepy mask) whereupon they were told to remain alone in my OR (in order to test their courage) while I fetched my embalming fluid. It was eerily lit but mostly dark, and of course the sinister sound-track (heeheehee) was still cackling away. As they stood in the room which in which they (supposedly) thought they were alone, Jill would sit up with arms outstretched from under her sheet on the gurney and tell them in a creepy voice that she "felt better now". There was quite a bit of screaming. Some of it we are sure was genuine. A couple of the more traumatized boys from last year's "lab" refused to participate much to my dismay. I was hoping to make someone cry or lose continence this time. Oh well.

Aaron photographed a few of the survivors on their way out..

Some looked more terrified then others.....

The cake. The cup-cake cake. But of course.

Which looks either more sinister or more friendly when it is all ablaze..I can't decide

The 9 would not stay lit, sadly, so we had to divide up the 11 for blowing purposes. Double digits are handy.

We ended the evening with present opening, and the watching of a scary (to some) movie. The time went really quickly. And I am once again convinced that combining the b-day party with a Halloween party is a brilliant move. The whole world is accomodating your party which they aren't when you have it in July. It does not hurt to have a helpful and long suffering spouse and if you can get a Jill, I highly recommend it.

It's not over yet folks. The next day was actual Halloween which means actual Trick or Treating. Here's the mob.

Our corner of the mob. Had to include Dot and Toto this time you know.

The weather was far milder in the neighbourhoods then it had been on the soccer fields that afternoon (bracing arctic winds that were strong enough to make the soccer ball have a life of its own-unfortunately the animated soccer ball did not favour our teams) and we had a good time.

The big boys ditched us this year. (IwillnotcryIwillnotcry) They were ably shadowed by our friend Bill. He's a good sport that Bill.

So isn't our Dot a doll? The correct answer would be, yes, indeedy.

I love this photo. Finny's posture reminds me of a Norman Rockwell painting. You know?

I always knew there was something...special...about Gracie. No special effects used on this photo. Just a reaaaallly delayed shutter release. Or was it??~~~~ doooodoodoodooooo. ~~~~I think her prim little get-up makes it especially creepy.

Amazingly, considering his 12:00am bedtime the night before..Finny got tired. After just 2 or 3 blocks. After the whining peaked it was determined that he should return to home base. Once the house was in sight, Aaron asked him if he wanted to go right home or stop at a few more houses. He said through heavily pouted lips, "a few more houses". His second wind carried him for several more (highly lucrative) blocks.

Oh but wait, what do we have here?

Yes...I do believe it is. Here's Harry hitching a ride in '08.
Comforting that some things don't change. Although by next year, I think it might be a bit awkward.

And although I could go on (and on...and on) I fear I may have lost you to the scrolling a few dozen pages ago.

So to recap: October was fun. October was hectic. Soccer is over. Which makes November less hectic. I like that. But still...October rocks. And. My kids are cute. Feel free to agree fervently It took me forever to get the proof of that posted.

A PRIZE!!! A prize to the first person who got this far AND can give me an accurate count of any "extra" friends who made it into the photos. (click on any photo to enlarge it)

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Brittany said...

I'm assuming by your "extra" friends you're talking about Jill? Since Martha didn't make it into the photos, as far as I'm aware....
But I do have to say, the bunny/dog costume wasn't as terrible as you previously described...that said...she does look WAY FABULOUS as dorothy. And after all that trouble perhaps she should go as dorothy again next year...and the boys accordingly (scarecrow, tinman, lion...??)
I saw a couple other kids in Mario and Luigi...but of course not as cute as yours. And what harry potter could possibly be as cute as Finny...still having hopes for a betrothal here.... :D

Jill said...

Finally! I'm going with 8 "friends"....at first I was going to count every singlr extra person then I realized what you meant...hopefully...nice stitches by the way, couldn't have done them better myself...Great pics my busy friend any time you need help just give a call...You know I'm here for ya! Stitches and all!

Laurel @ Ducks in a Row said...

Well, I made it all the way through that post and I think it sounds like fun - for another mom to do. What did you do with all the candy?

Brittany said...

Ooh! EXTRA friends LOL I get it...haha

paparazzimom said...

what fun!!!I thoroughly enjoyed the snap happy post. :) Nice effects too miss photoshop whiz! I thought the dog/bunny in a tutu was cute. And I LOVED the Dorothy and am glad she got to wear it for a few things at least. Finny is a perfect HP and you were adorable as his romantic love interest too. :) Did Aaron dress up? Super cute Mario and Luigi too. Great jackolanterns, great party, great post! :)

ANewKindOfPerfect said...

I love the play by play! :)

Tooj said...

Oh my WOW. I do recall some specially placed friends in a few photos, but I do not want to cheat and scroll to say WHAT exactly they are or in which photo. :)

You've just made me want to convince TO, August birthday, to have his in October. Of course, since MINE is in October I could throw myself a party and invite my children and their friends. Then they'd feel like they were attending a big person party.

I loved your recap of everything Halloweenie. It was well worth the wait.

Aaron B. said...

YOU ARE AMAZING!! Love all the pictures and the fun extras you added. It was a fun month and a super birthday party. The kids are so lucky to have such and awesome mommy who can throw down a wicked fun party. Love you more than eggnog (no, really!).

Gail said...

OMGoodness! That is a FULL-ON halloween. You guys sure get into it!

thanks for popping by my blog!

And yes, there is bound to be a candy swap in 2010!
Gail :)

The Redhead Riter said...

Guess who?

I have a little surprise for you on my blog and a GREAT BIG BUNCH OF BLOGGING BUDDY ♥


Jen said...

Ok I read the whole thing and it was awesome! We have 3 October birthday here, and I heartily agree on the Halloween birthday party idea - looks like you all had so much fun :)

Seth said...

Loved the blog, and love you!! I was methodically counting all the extras to claim the prize (nothing like a bit of competition to get a Randall going...) and then my internet connection zonked out and now will not show any pictures. I HATE LIBERTY LIFE!!!! (have not had normal internet access since I got remote access through work :/)

I think you have the most beautiful children this side of the celestial kingdom. I am jealous and would have loved to have experienced it all. IMPRESSIVE PHOTOS :) Would have paid to see Finny's gagging show, not to mention Harry Potter (an absolute CLASSIC), Dorother (aDORable) and Mario Bros (very original if you ask me).

COnsider yourself hugged and kissed. Love to all!!


Kim said...

Great job Kirsty! Looks like a very fun time was had by all!

Anonymous said...

Great photos ... sorry I didn't have four hours to look at them the other day LOL. Love your writing and photos all the same xoxo ...

My guess is '8' extra friends? :D

Thelma JO

The girl with the flour in her hair said...

Love this post! I had a bunch of witty responses as I read, but noe I can't recall any of them. Pity, really, because they were hilarious...

Love the pictures! And yes, your kids are adorable! I just wanted to thank you for stopping by and commenting! I'm following!

Jessica said...

Oh how I look forward to your Halloween post every year!! Fabulous play by play....love every single part...the costumes, the special effects.
You're such a FAB fun mom!

I'm guessing 9 'extras'!


Anonymous said...

The kids looked fabulous, and seriously, you are going to have trouble with Finny. He has THE most kissable lips, and is too charming for his own good! Dorothy looked great as Dorothy and as Bunny-Dog, and the big boys looked tres. convincing! Your parties make my efforts pale into insignificance. Do any of the kids sleep EVER again? I would be scared to ever close my eyes again. Whoever Jill is, she is a keeper. Finny and Spiro are the only people I know who can gag over pumpkin! Must be familial.
Not competitive enough to work out the whole "extras" deal.
Love you.


Aunt LoLo said...

Happy October to you. ;-) My GOODNESS but that was a long and exciting post!

Have I ever told you how much I adore your writing "voice"? No? Well, I do. Carry on.