Halloween is one of those holidays that inspires vivid memories for me. Pardon my stroll down Memory Lane...
2001: Zach is less than two weeks old. We carve "Z" into our pumpkins, bundle up the baby, and walk around our apartment complex with friends whose children are old enough to trick-or-treat.
2002: Inspired by a sewing friend, I make Zachary a skunk costume, complete with faux fur and a foam-filled tail that wiggles when he walks. He is toasty warm outside in spite of freezing temperatures. He is the hit of the ward trunk-or-treat. I vow never to expend so much effort on a costume for a one-year-old.
2003: We borrow a bear costume this year, since I am puking through a pregnancy. Two-year-old Zachary charmingly performs for the video camera. This is the first year of real trick-or-treating, although we only go around the block.
2004: Two kids dress up this year, both in recycled costumes. Zachary dons the lion costume my mom made for my brother circa 1985. Tyler is a skunk. It isn't a stretch to have two wild animals -- one loud and one stinky -- in the house. This may be the only year the whole family dresses up. Garry actually goes to work as a vampire!
2005: Halloween costumes are sponsored by Old Navy. Zach, the largest preschooler known to mankind, is a dragon, and Tyler is a frog. Zachary is so shy at the preschool costume parade that he cries. The ward trunk-or-treat is easily the highlight of the holiday.
2006: The boys are cowboys courtesy of Goodwill flannel shirts, homespun vests, and hats and boots by ebay. Garry dresses up as a cowboy to take them trick-or-treating. It is freezing outside; the boys wear blanket sleepers under their clothing.
2007: Following an army-themed sixth birthday party, Zach is an army guy and Tyler takes a turn in the lion costume. Ty's growls are very convincing! My eight-months-pregnant belly resembles a pumpkin. In spite of my enormous size, I take a turn with the trick-or-treating so I can stroll and chat with my neighbor for an hour. It is unseasonably warm.
2008: Our family boasts a ninja, a transformer, and a feverish, teething turtle. Once again, I am puking through a pregnancy. I am in charge of the ward Halloween carnival, which saps my enthusiasm for the holiday just a bit.
2009: The boys are happy with recycled costumes again -- a vampire, an army guy, and a frog. Lexi gets a ladybug costume because I'm excited to dress up a girl, but of course the costume is only good for a photograph!
We enjoy an evening with friends. Can you spot five Bartles in this photo? (Click to enlarge.)
I wonder what our next Halloween will bring!