I try not to take anything for granted. Admittedly I often do, but when it comes to accomplishing even the smallest of tasks together with my children, I feel like a million bucks. Sometimes in the moment, when I am out in public with all three trying to tackle a task like making it through the grocery store without incident, I don’t always get that carefree million-dollar feeling. In fact, I am often wrought with panic as I think to myself, “What am I doing?” or “Why don’t I just do e-Cart?”
But I can’t help it I am a tryer. I like to try to go grocery store shopping with all three. I like to try to take them by myself to a birthday party for one of their friends if I can. Yeah, I would much rather have my husband or someone else to be my wingman in case we hit a snag or a tantrum, but it just doesn’t work out that way.
Most recently, I tackled Halloween with my kids. Halloween, unlike other holidays, is a holiday that I really do enjoy. I like dressing up my girls and decorating the outside of the house. I maintain that I detest carving pumpkins, decorative scarecrows, and I worry about the grotesque amounts of candy that my kids end up eating, but I do like Halloween nonetheless.
Our day started out dressing the kids up in costume for school and heading out to watch all the kids at Olivia’s Elementary school in a costume parade. For those of you who follow my blogs, I ended up not dressing up after all (although I did decide that the best idea for a Halloween costume for a pregnant lady is to fashion a cardboard box into an oven, cut a hole in the middle where my tummy would be and paint it like a cinnamon bun, and then have the husband/partner dress up as a chef). After that Raquel and I spent some time on our own playing at a park, having lunch, and taking a brief rest, before picking up Olivia and Georgia for downtown trick or treating.
After parking downtown, I set out to put Rocky in her huge peacock costume and make sure the other girls were all suited up in their costumes yet again. I said a little prayer and had my mini moment of asking myself “Am I crazy?” before heading out to brave the streets of Kentucky and Petaluma Boulevard.
Had it not been for one of Georgia’s little friends and her grandfather, Robert, we might not have made it through the experience as successfully as we did. He made it possible for me to walk with Rocky, the slow little peacock, who was baffled by each piece of candy as it landed in her Elmo bucket with a audible “Kerplunk!” She would stop at stare at each piece while the other girls would already be up ahead trying to get the next piece of candy.
We called it a day after just a few more stores and I managed to get the kids to the car without any resistance. That million dollar feeling set in and we headed home to attempt dinner before nightfall. Thankfully, Brent was handling the nightshift with the girls trick or treating on our street.
I remember when I was a kid my parents (my mom really) would riffle through our candy looking for the weird pieces or suspicious candies that they didn’t like the look of. My mom would take those away and leave us with the ones that couldn’t possibly have been poisoned. I was always happy to have her take those funky pieces that I wasn’t going to eat any way; the peppermints or the Brach’s hard candies that I could care less about, and the other foreign pieces.
Now I found myself sitting on the living room floor doing the same thing with my children. I don’t think I had any real worries about our neighbors or downtown shopkeepers having poisoned my kids’ stash. I was more interested in taking away the candies that they didn’t really care about or I knew they weren’t going to eat. Dare I leave them and then they end up half eaten on the carpet. I now have a bag of Almond Joy, peppermints, Lemonheads, and some other random pieces. I am still in shock that they don’t like Butterfingers. Whatever!
One of the coolest things that came inside of the kids’ buckets was a fortune cookie. I got to explain to them how to break them open and take the fortune out before eating the cookie. Georgia’s fortune was exceptionally interesting as it read, “Catch on fire with enthusiasm and people will come from miles to watch you burn,” I laughed out loud after reading it because it was, in it’s own weird way, so appropriate for her. Georgia has never lacked enthusiasm for life. As challenging as she has been at times, her zest for life is something that I think about often. She might have dressed up as Dorothy for Halloween but Georgia has never been small nor meek.
The Halloween lights have all been taken down, the pumpkins, may they rest in peace, found themselves in the green can, and the costumes are waiting in the laundry room for me to get a moment to scrub the chocolate stains out of them before packing them away for potential future use. As I look forward to the upcoming holidays and the furry that can come with them I am going to keep in mind Georgia and her fortune. I have been reminded that with the right attitude all things are possible. And while I haven’t necessarily caught on fire, as I reflect on how this Halloween went down, I have been reminded that this is the time of my life. It may not always be easy with my little girls, but even without the candy it is awfully sweet.
Thank you October, it sure was fun.