Thursday, October 31, 2013

Countdown to Halloween 2013 - Halloween!

After a couple of doctor appointments in the morning, we spent the afternoon enjoying Halloween. First, the girls carved pumpkins.

Olivia carving her pumpkin with 
Shadow looking on.

This year both the girls easily used knives to carve their pumpkins.

Sophia taking the seeds out of her pumpkin.

Neither of them needed any help with carving or removing all the seeds.

Olivia's pumpkin with the top removed.

For such small pumpkins, both were loaded with seeds.

Some of the many seeds.

We wash the pulp off the seeds and then roast them in the oven.

Eenie checking out Olivia's pumpkin.

Some of the pets were very curious as to what the girls were doing. I think this is the first year that a couple of the cats were interested in watching.

Montague supervising the girls as they carve their pumpkins.

Montague wanted to get up close to the action.

Cooper checking out what the girls are working on.

This was Cooper's first Halloween, so he wasn't quite sure what to make of the whole pumpkin-carving experience. He was very good, though; and didn't try to eat the seeds or pulp.

Sophia with her pumpkin.

The girls finished carving their pumpkins.

Olivia with her pumpkin.

Then they cleaned up and headed to the dining room where we worked on the outlines of their hands. Each year, I trace their hands onto a tie-dyed pillowcase that has a ribbon through it. Olivia uses it for collecting candy, and Sophia just keeps hers as a record of past Halloweens. (She uses a plastic orange pumpkin for collecting candy.)

The girls figuring out where they want their hand traced and
what color markers to use.

The first step is to trace each of the girl's hands onto their pillowcase using a fabric marker.

Sophia's hand in place.

Then I print the year and what costume they wore inside of their hand. Next, they print or handwrite their name.

Olivia adding her name.

Sometimes they add a picture.

Sophia writing her name on her hand.

They may do a symbol that reminds them of their costume.

Sophia's finished hand for 2013.

When they were done, they take a look at how their hands have grown through the years. This year, Sophia had to put her hand on the back of the pillowcase because there was no more room on the front.

One side of Sophia's pillowcase with
the hand tracings.

Olivia still has room on the front of her pillowcase.

Olivia with her pillowcase decorated with hand tracings.

It was fun to look back at what the girls dressed up as each year; and to compare how their hands had grown from the first year they dressed up to now.

Olivia's finished hand tracing.

Later in the afternoon, the girls changed into their  costumes. Olivia dressed as Cleopatra.

Olivia as Cleopatra.

Sophia dressed as the Snow Queen.

Sophia as the Snow Queen.

Sophia wore fake eyelashes that had "ice" and "snow" on the ends as well as a design on her forehead that looked like ice crystals.

Sophia's long eyelashes and forehead decoration.

The girls really liked their costumes this year.

Olivia and Sophia in their costumes.

After having dinner at the local fire station and playing some games, the girls were ready to go trick or treating. We headed to another nearby community since the homes are close to one another.

Trick or treating at a decorated home.

The girls could walk from home to home which was nice. Because we live in the country, the houses are much further away from one another. Going into town where the homes are right next to one another makes trick or treating even more fun.

Another home with lots of outside decorations.

As we did last year, we went to the senior cottages. The seniors were so excited to see the girls and many were very complimentary about their costumes. The girls wished each of the people who gave them candy a "Happy Halloween."

The girls at one of the senior cottages.

Then we went to a little local cafe. Each year they transform the restaurant into a haunted house. There are different people in costumes around the perimeter of the restaurant. There's even a fortune teller who gave the girls a reading.

Sophia and Olivia at the haunted house.

When we got home, the girls spread out their candy and divided it by type.

Sophia with candy she collected.

It was the most candy they have ever received.

Olivia with candy she collected.

Needless to say, they were very happy.

What we all enjoyed, though, was seeing people who we haven't seen in awhile when we either visited their home or saw them on the street trick or treating. We also visited a senior from church. He was so surprised: he had never had anyone visit him on Halloween in all the 15 years he lived in his home! We had such a nice visit with him, and were so happy that we stopped to see him.

One of the last people we visited was a neighbor who said he didn't have any candy, but welcomed us in for homemade ice cream. He gave us each big bowls of chocolate ice cream. The chocolate was from France and was absolutely delicious. We had a delightful time with him - almost a half hour! - and enjoyed catching up with him.

So, Halloween was a memorable and exciting time for us all this year!

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