I realize that it’s already mid-November, but permit me to take you back a few weeks to the end of October. I can’t believe how different the beginning and end of the month were, at least with respect to the weather. Early in the month we spent an afternoon at the lake – swimming! – and did things like imagine ourselves a princess in numerous variations of princess clothing, making paint-chip art, and at least according to my iPhone, making funny faces at very close range to the camera.
But by the end of the month the weather had turned cool and we readied for two celebrations: Oliver’s birthday and Halloween. This year Oliver turned two, and while we could have made a big to-do about this very special occasion, we did not. Instead, we made a very big train, cupcakes with eyes, and blew up about a dozen balloons which we left scattered across the living room. Despite his love of trains on TV and in books, movies, and real life, trains in the living room are apparently not his thing: he was far more interested in (and entertained by) the balloons, which brought him great joy for a good 30 minutes. (Tim found a way to have some fun in the aforementioned train, so I guess that counts for something).
And despite being nearly 5 years old, this was the first time we took Eleanor trick-or-treating. I’m not against it, our kids just didn’t have the interest until now (and we didn’t have the love of Halloween ourselves required to take them out against their will). But this year Eleanor’s friend and classmate asked her to go with him so we did. And you know what? It was fantastic. Eleanor’s costume rocked, Alice’s was a tradition (each of the other two wore it their first Halloween), Tim’s would have been great if he had taken my suggestion, and Oliver’s was nonexistent. (I tried unsuccessfully to put a name tag on his shirt so he could be a zookeeper, but he was “having none of that thank you very much mom, now get this damn THING off my shirt.” Luckily, he batted his eyelashes and that was all it took for the candy to come pouring in.)
(It’s a terrible photo, apologies. That’s Tim and Oliver. Tim is wearing an Optimus Prime mask. We had a lot of fun coming up with possibilities: putting a “2%” over his head and going as “2 over optimus prime”; optimus prime rib; optimus prime number; optimus primary colors…but this is what we settled on. “Man wearing an Optimus Prime mask.”)
My costume was a cop out: I was a mommy blogger, which meant I spent the first 10 minutes of the evening documenting every step the kids took and tweeting things like this before realizing that (a) no one was following me [on twitter] and (b) I was missing everything.
So what does all this have to do with a cat, skeleton, and zookeeper on a train (this was the title, in case you forgot)? Well, the morning after Oliver’s birthday, the three kids decided that maybe the train was pretty cool after all and that’s where my little cat, zookeeper, and skeleton spent their morning.