Halloween Memories - Childhood to the Present (Not as Long as it Sounds)

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Real Estate Broker/Owner with Austin Texas Homes, LLC 453249

I was thinking about Halloween today, since we have some neighbors who seem to be seriously over-the-top with their decor for this "holiday".  My wife informed me that they had placed rubber heads on pikes on either  side of their sidewalk.  Sure enough, there are some relatively lifelike severed heads there, not too far from my driveway and my small, impressionable children.  I was tempted to call the HOA, but I haven't decided yet.  There are only five homes on our street, and I don't want to seem like a party pooper, but dang! 

At any rate, I was ruminating about my memories from Halloween, both as a kid and as a parent now. 

When I was a child, my main memory involves wearing a hot mask made of _____ (I don't know what) with a thin rubber band to hold it in place.  Taking off these masks always managed to take out some hair from the back of my head as well.  One year when I was about six or seven, I had a lion mask and what kind of looked like lion pajamas.  I remember putting my tongue though the undersized hole which was ostensibly supposed to serve as ventilation.  I scraped my tongue back and forth on that tiny hole, feeling my taste buds erode.  Truth be known, I wish I had an oxygen mask or a mini-fan to keep my face from sweating so much.  The cool late October Dallas air never felt so good as when I was able to remove this stifling facewear.

When I was about 11 or 12, toward the tail-end of my trick-or-treating days, I remember getting a large grocery sack and my friends and I stayed out until some ridiculously late hour collecting candy.  After returning home, my eyes were always "bigger than my stomach" and I would eventually go to bed feeling bloated and uneasy about what I had just consumed. 

 

However, that bad feeling didn't last long, as I would arise the next morning and greet the day with some Snickers, candy corn, Joe Bazooka bubble gum, Now 'n' Later's, and whatever else I could cram down my gullet before my mom stopped me and made me eat a proper breakfast.  That gigantic load of sweets usually wouldn't survive November 1st or 2nd at the latest.  Yes, I was a candy junkie and I don't care who knows it. 

 

 

 

Another year, in high school, I dressed all in white and made everyone guess what I was.  I honestly had no idea either, but it was fun hearing the guesses all day.  Once in college, I went to a costume party as a 1940's gangster, although I probably looked more like Walt Disney as a younger man.  I remember the unique and excited reaction from my friends (and girlfriend) who had never seen me with my hair slicked back and with a mustache (drawn on - I couldn't have grown one then if I tried, and I did try).  My girlfriend treated me like an exotic, rich, attractive stranger.  Hmmm... maybe I should look into that mustache thing again. Actually, my wife HATES it when I try to grow one, so that likely won't happen.

 

 As a parent, Halloween night feels different, with the exception of the year that my son and I went together as Sully and Mikey from "Monsters Inc.". That suit also could have used its own cooling system, as it was simply impenetrable by the wind.  I probably sweated off about five pounds, but IT WAS REALLY FUN.  Also, it must have been memorable, because people mentioned it several times to me months later ("Hey, aren't you that guy who was the blue monster for Halloween?"  I guess it made a strong impression on people, and my son was incredibly cute as Mikey.  He said, "I have one EYE!" more times than I could count that night.).

I will never forget the first time that we took my son trick-or-treating - he was not quite two.  We would go to each home, knock or ring the bell, wait patiently, then whenever the neighbor answered, my son would immediately try to go inside.  After about the third house, he seemed pretty perturbed with us, probably because he was wondering "Which of these people are we going to hang out with anyway?" 

Once we were able to teach him about the candy part, he warmed to the idea, so we coached him on saying "Trick or treat" several times.  Inevitably, he would stand quietly, accepting the treats, then the SECOND that the door closed, he would say, "Twit a tweet" to us.  Oh well....

A couple of years later, he was a true master and my daughter went for her first outing.  He was trying to teach her how to do it properly, and she was really looking up to him as the teacher.  After three or four attempts at different homes, she got the hang of it, and began to just say, "Gimme...candee".  Isn't that pretty much what we all want to say?  Are we really going to perform a trick if we don't get a treat?  I would like to nominate my daughter's innocent catchphrase as the new official Halloween slogan - "Gimme candy!"

In a couple of days, we will take our toddler daughter (barely 19 months now), and I will be interested to see what new memories are created Wednesday evening. 

Happy early Halloween, everybody!

Copyright 2007   Austin Real Estate     Jason Crouch   All rights reserved

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If you're looking for a home in the Austin area, you can also visit my primary website at www.austintexashomes.com.  Thanks!

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Rainer
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This was such a sweet post. I look forward to hearing about this year's memories after Wednesday night. My kids are 13 and 11 now and they go out with their friends and do their own thing. We definitely had our share of fun Halloweens when they were younger.
Oct 29, 2007 04:40 PM #9
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Jason Crouch
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CANDI - I am very familiar with "dulce" as one of my favorite flavors is dulce de leche.  I like the new nickname.  As for the trunk idea, Katerina blogged about her church doing this as well, but they call it "trunk or treat" there in Florida.  Thanks for supporting the new phrase - I suppose that is understandable.
Oct 29, 2007 04:40 PM #10
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Jason Crouch
Austin Texas Homes, LLC - Austin, TX
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STACY - That lawnmower idea sounds like a lot of fun.  I think I stopped trick-or-treating when I was about 14 or 15.  Wow - I haven't had a shaving cream fight in ages.
Oct 29, 2007 04:46 PM #11
Rainer
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Julie Neerings~Lifting Hearts ♥ Building Dreams~
Agent Referral - Salt Lake City, UT

Hi Jason-You just brought the memories all back from my own childhood.  Thank you.  It's fun looking back on the crazy things we did as kids. The last year I trick-or-treated (age 12 also), my best friend and I decided to be a 2 headed monster.  We went to the local thrift store, bought big pants, she got in one side, me in the other. We went around the whole city like that.  Since it was our last year, we were determined to make the record on the amount of candy we received.  So when I say City, well pretty darn close to the whole City.  :)

You'll have to post a picture of your darling little ones in their costumes.  Have a great night! 

Oct 29, 2007 04:50 PM #12
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Jason Crouch
Austin Texas Homes, LLC - Austin, TX
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JENNIFER - I must admit that I don't do well at haunted houses.  The idea is fun, but I scare easily I guess.  As for your costume, maybe Sylvia Plath?  If not, then probably a sexy cat.
Oct 29, 2007 04:50 PM #13
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Jason Crouch
Austin Texas Homes, LLC - Austin, TX
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FAINA - I enjoyed talking to you, too, and it is resolved now. 

That sounds like a creative costume.  Maybe it will look something like this:

Oct 29, 2007 04:55 PM #14
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Jason Crouch
Austin Texas Homes, LLC - Austin, TX
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PAUL - Consider it done.  It sounds so easy.  Why didn't I think of that myself?  Thanks - you are a good friend.  Also, thanks for being the only man to comment on this post so far.
Oct 29, 2007 04:57 PM #15
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Jason Crouch
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SHARON - I must agree with you.  I don't do really well with blood and gore either, and Halloween has turned pretty gross over the years.  I didn't mention the fact that they also have a very large inflatable red-eyed demon as well next door.  I will implement Paul's terrific plan tomorrow.
Oct 29, 2007 05:02 PM #16
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Jason Crouch
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BRIDGET - Thanks for reading this one.  I am glad you liked it.  I may post some pictures of the kiddos after Wednesday.  Have a great week!
Oct 29, 2007 05:04 PM #17
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Jason Crouch
Austin Texas Homes, LLC - Austin, TX
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JULIE - That two-headed monster costume sounds crazy fun to me!  I may post some photos after Wednesday night.  It was great talking to you earlier this evening.  We'll talk again soon, I hope. 
Oct 29, 2007 05:07 PM #18
Rainmaker
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Gary Miljour
Lend Smart Mortgage NMLS#207208 - Southern Pines, NC
Mortgage Originator NMLS Licensed in AZ and NC
Now Bazooka Joe Bubble Gum, that brings back some fun halloween memories, or the bit-o-honey that would break your tooth if you did not eat it the first night.  Thanks for taking us down memory lane.
Oct 29, 2007 05:45 PM #19
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Jason Crouch
Austin Texas Homes, LLC - Austin, TX
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GARY - Yes, Bazooka Joe was awesome.  I LOVED those little comics, even though I must admit I didn't always understand them.  Bit-o-honey was one of my faves.  I am glad you liked this one.  Thanks for your comments!
Oct 29, 2007 05:55 PM #20
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Jennifer Monroe
Savvy + Company Real Estate - Charlotte, NC
Real Estate REALTOR®/Broker in Beautiful Charlotte

Loveseat!!!! it was staring you in the face all along! (yes, had considered the devil, but)... I'm a cupcake this year!!!!!

(until I arrive at the Safari!) 

Oct 29, 2007 06:01 PM #21
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Jason Crouch
Austin Texas Homes, LLC - Austin, TX
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I thought you would like my guesses at least.  I heard once that every woman's costume is a sexy ______(insert whatever here).  A sexy cat, witch, nurse, schoolgirl, etc.  I would love to see you in the cupcake costume - it sounds hilarious.

Oct 29, 2007 06:07 PM #22
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Celeste "SALLY" Cheeseman
Liberty Homes - Mililani, HI
(RA) AHWD CRS ePRO OAHU HAWAII REAL ESTATE
Jason: I can't believe this...I have come here four times and got sidetracked!  Now, I'm not going to leave until I make a comment. Geez.  I love your remembering all you have experienced with your children. I would highly suggest you take all these family stories and put it in a binder or on cd or something so you can have these for your children to read. When they get older they will appreciate it ....believe me.
Oct 29, 2007 06:52 PM #23
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Jason Crouch
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SALLY - I was actually thinking about that tonight on my way home.  I think I may work on this tomorrow.  Thanks for the reminder!  I am so glad that you enjoyed this post.  I liked writing it, and it came out very quickly once I started.
Oct 29, 2007 06:55 PM #24
Rainer
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Adam Waldman
Westcott Group Real Estate Company - Hauppauge, NY
Realtor - Long Island
JASON:  You and your son going around as Monsters Inc. must have been hysterical.  You're a great dad for going the extra mile on that one.  I like your suggestion to change the door-knocking phrase.  It's so much more to the point, and truthfully, the little ones aren't going to play tricks anyway, so it's an idle threat at best!
Oct 30, 2007 12:23 AM #25
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Kelly Sibilsky
Licensed Through Referral Connection, LTD. - Lake Zurich, IL

Halloween is so much fun! Except it's a bummer when you get Necco wafers...those are some kind of cruel candy joke. Don't forget to watch It's a Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown tonight...now there's a classic!

Oct 30, 2007 01:42 AM #26
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Jason Crouch
Austin Texas Homes, LLC - Austin, TX
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ADAM - The Monsters Inc. year was really fun.  That costume was incredibly authentic.  Thanks for the kudos for my fatherhood skills.  GIMME CANDY!
Oct 30, 2007 06:17 AM #27
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Jason Crouch
Austin Texas Homes, LLC - Austin, TX
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KELLY - Yeah, what is up with Necco wafers anyway?  Who thought that these would be a good idea?  As for the Great Pumpkin, we have it on video, too, so I'm sure we will watch it either tonight or tomorrow.  Thanks for your funny comments.
Oct 30, 2007 06:51 AM #28
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