02 November 2012

Halloween with Maddie and Riley

On the subject of things in which I am quite invested: Maddie and Riley. Here are some pictures of them from Halloween. They went as Harry Potter and Hermione Grainger (complete with Crookshanks!). We've been reading the HP books together and are about to finish book 6. We've been at it for about a year, and it's been a real joy to share that whole series with them and see them be engaged by a story for so long.

 Maddie as Hermione at school for the parade through the neighborhood.

 Riley as Harry, Maddie as Hermione (Crookshanks is in the bucket), me as a dementor.

Riley Potter. He refused to wear the glasses once we were done with photos. Oh, well.

We had an excellent Halloween, the only limitation being my impatience with the race home from work/race out the door frenzy. I struggle mightily with the transition from work to home each day on the best of days, and on a day when I arrive home only to have children to costume, photos to take, trick or treating to do . . . it can feel really overwhelming.

We got out the door, though, and we trick or treated for two hours. Two hours! For part of that time, we were with friends, and the kids had a blast. I got tired of answering Maddie's endless query, "Can we go to this house? Can we go to that house? What about that house?" You can go to all the houses, child!

Our neighborhood is great. Lots of people really do it up—sometimes to the point of being too scary for me—but this year M&R both had a lot of curiosity about things that in the past had been too creepy for them. They are at least as brave if not more brave than I am at this point.

They got tons of candy. I have three rules for Halloween candy:

No candy before breakfast.
You have to eat your candy at the dining room table.
Disposal: Eat the stuff you like, compost the stuff you don't, all wrappers in the trash.

Yes, they end up eating a few pieces of candy between breakfast and school and yes, they eat a lot of candy after school, but they are surprisingly good overall about self-reagulating, they enjoy the autonomy of it, and they eat quite healthfully most of the time. Plus I don't have to police anything. So we're all happy.

Here they are sorting their candy, at 5:45 a.m. on November 1:

Yes, they still get up quite early most days. We have our peace around this. On this occasion, they sorted their candy individually, then ended up combining it into one box which is now on the dining table. They ask each others' permission before eating anything out of the box. I love how cooperative they are about this and so many other things, and how they think about each other in their actions, almost all the time. Their relationship has been a source of comfort and joy for all of us. They are each others' preferred playmate; they have spats and disagreements, to be sure, but for the most part, they truly enjoy spending nearly all their time together.

Impossible, unthinkable for me not to be completely invested in these two, methinks.


Anne said...

How sweet, what beautiful children, and turning into warm, compassionate people! Love the costumes and love how they are co-operating with each other!

Anonymous said...

They look so awesome. And wonderful that you are reading HP with them and that they love it.

Last year we started having a Hallooween photo shoot the weekend BEFORE Halloween. Everyone gets costumed up and we go outside in full daylight to take photos. Everyone is excited to try on costumes, and also, they know if it goes well, I won't nag them for photos on actual Halloween. Makes the start of TorTing much better when it doesn't begin with my nagging to get good photos before we start collecting candy.

Truthfully this year I also took off of work early so I could pick kids up directly from school and make a real dinner and have time for the transition. But I recognize not everyone has that luxury.

Mary Ellen said...

Love it that you are writing again! I think it is an essential thing to write every day, and I haven't been doing it myself.

Pam said...

Welcome back. I have always enjoyed your writing.

Mama Mama Quite Contrary said...

That is a wonderful Halloween policy. Plus, it is so heartwarming to see M&R combining their candy and asking permission from each other. Ahhh... this twin mama can dream. :-)

Mizasiwa said...

Your kids are getting soooo big!! - hate it when that happens ;-)