Halloween equals crazy kids in my life–and crazy kids (as a mom or a teacher) are NOT at the top of my favorites list. However, I can look past the candy-crazed children, the high cost of cheap, plastic costumes, and insane after-school costume parties and see that there are three…and ONLY three good things about this holiday.
#1 Pumpkin flavored coffee I live in a small town. I work in another small town, a village really. When I say “small town” you can read NO STARBUCKS. The nearest yummy coffee joint is a good 30 minutes away. (Not going to be going there real regular.) But, the local Kwik Trip gas station has a nice Pumpkin cappuccino. I like to mix it ½ and ½ with the house blend coffee. It makes a yummy morning treat. Although I usually brew my own java in the mornings, this holiday flavor will entice me a few times this season.
#2 Jack-o-lanterns I don’t know why creating these cutout pumpkins pops for me. Maybe there is just something special about the look on a child’s face when she is up to her elbows in pumpkin guts. Or maybe is the idea of young boys wielding sharp knives…no, no, no. Actually, they draw the faces with Sharpies, and I try to work some creative magic. The knife turning their black squiggles into the bulging eyes, twisted noses, and crooked teeth that my children had imagined.
#3 In a Dark, Dark Room This is the only scary book that I own. In it is the creepiest and best Halloween story ever written–“The Green Ribbon”. When I was in 2nd Grade, my teacher set up a listening center in our classroom. This center had a round table with four chairs, four headphones, and four copies of In A Dark, Dark Room. I don’t know that she ever put any other books at the center. I don’t even actually remember listening to this book, I just remember the WISHING that I could hear the stories in this book.
This year on Halloween, I lost my phone. Although a neighbor found it, and I got it back the next day, I allowed this event to make me a rather grumpy mom during most of the Trick-or-Treating festivities. (What a bummer.) But I did get some of my favorite coffee, we did carve pumpkins, and I did creep children out with my reading…lights out…candlelit…low, spooky voice.