So Halloween was about what this year has been in the family. Dreary, morose, melancholy. Trying to keep up with the festivities has been a bit like running a race with anvils tied to our legs. Still, we tried. By adjusting the events back to September, to replacing some of the more costly activities with activities that are, well, free, we did what we could to keep everyone's mind off our current plight. Invoking the spirit of Bob Cratchit, we attempted to say no matter how dim things appear, there is still plenty to be thankful for. And while Hurricane Sandy dumped its share of rain on the Trick or Treat parade, we were reminded that there are folks who are far worse off than we are. Even now,we have a home (so far), and we are dry, and we have each other. Perhaps faint blessings for teenagers, but it still means quite a bit to Mom and Pop.
Of course this is the second year without my Dad. In addition, my Sister chose to stay with her son and his daughter and his daughter's mom rather than come over, so it was the first time since we moved to Ohio that she wasn't part of the fun. So it was my Mom, and the Fam. Nevertheless, against what opposition the elements could bring, we threw ourselves into it with as much gusto as possible, and I think had enough relaxed enjoyment to be worthy of a memory or two. Below are some pics from the days leading up to the big night. Our youngest declared it the best Halloween ever! Plus, we planted pumpkins for the first time in several years, and that turned out to be timely. Not the harvest that we hoped, but it did get us a few pumpkins at least, and that's worth its weight when money is tight and you have to scramble for the basics.
After the rain soaked candy quest, everyone retired early to the homestead to partake in a last round of Grim Grinning Ghosts and that elusive Great Pumpkin, while drinking cider and eating pumpkin seeds - not to mention the gobs of candy. Once the youngest was in bed, we allowed the older three to stay up and watch a lighthearted spook-fest, Ghostbusters style. Hadn't seen that movie in years. It was at once a jaunt down memory lane, and remembering recent pictures of the principle actors, a reminder of how quickly time flies. So here it goes, another pumpkin-filled night of frights and delights:
|Only because the darn tree looks haunted|
|At the fun (and free) Apple Butter Festival amidst the beautiful foliage|
|The annual ghost walk, confined to local cemeteries, but appropriately eerie nonetheless|
|No, I don't know what he's doing. Neither does his oldest brother.|
|Another haunted looking tree, Old Man Willow would be proud|
|Our youngest navigates a straw maze at a nearby farm and country gardens|
|Preparing for our nightly jamboree, rain making the decorations more subdued than usual|
|Our oldest only went around the block for old time's sake, but he went|
|Beneath the rugged armor dwells a rambunctious candy warrior waiting to get out|
|Yes, he went as St. Francis, as part of his youth ministry - he's says folks gave him extra candy because of it|
|Truth be told, for our 8th grader, it's barely a costume. He dresses like this normally|