Ah, Halloween, that time of year when I try to reconstruct my own magical childhood memories and force them on my kids. I’m aware there is a big difference between carrying on traditions and trying to recreate and relive a memory. And I think I’ve been blurring the line between these two ideas. I know, this sounds oddly familiar, doesn’t it? Yes, that’s right; I did this last year, and the year before, and the year before that. Oh, and at Christmas, and birthday parties, and just about any other special event. You think I would learn.
This time of year, especially Halloween makes me ache for my childhood. I can remember so vividly how excited I was going to school on Halloween for the costume parade and the classroom Halloween party. But I also couldn’t get home quick enough to prepare for the evening. Halloween was a big deal at our house and all I wanted to do was get home from school and help my dad to be a part of it. So it’s no surprise that my expectations for providing a fun-filled Halloween were high as Ellie was getting older. And with these high expectations, I sometimes forget that Ellie is only three and Chloe’s only one.
One great thing about the end of summer is the garden harvest. We have tons and tons of tomatoes, zucchinis, eggplants, and green peppers. And every year we plan on making salsas, stews, and sauces and preserving them. And every year, we never do. So we scramble to eat everything or give them away before they go bad. But this year, we canned 22 pint size jars of diced homegrown tomatoes!
Gift giving in my family gets crazy. Maybe not crazy, but definitely strange. If it’s not a strange gift like a homemade Christmas themed zombie movie where my mom is credited as “zombie #2”, we’ll wrap the gifts weird. From packages being locked in chains and having to figure out story problems to get the combination numbers, to being riveted shut in duct work, duct taped, dry-walled, zip tied, or being frozen in a block of ice, we’ve done it all someway or another. You never know what is going to show up under the tree at my parent’s house.