The year I kind of got into Halloween

Halloween is weird for me. I mention this on the blog every year. I didn’t grow up celebrating Halloween, I used to be superstitious and I resent the occasion’s commercial intrusion into our lives. But. This year I kind of embraced it, in all its pumpkin glory, with all its spooky puns.

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I say “kind of” because maybe I’ll feel differently about it next year. And also because we didn’t go “all out” on the Halloween thing. We didn’t go trick-or-treating. We didn’t even hit a party this year.

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Motherhood has made me really tune in to the rhythms of life. I see Halloween as another opportunity to create rituals around that rhythm. From the pumpkin carving to the dressing up, there’s so much to chat about in terms of the natural world and of folklore. There’s so much to explore and enjoy imaginatively.

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There is, of course, a dark side to Halloween. I’m sure we’ll think about how to approach that every year. That is not what my three-year-old sees. So far, she sees the world full of magic. I feel no need for us to take ourselves so seriously that we chase the fairies away with the goblins.

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This Halloween, we visited Old Down Country Park with friends who have membership there. It was a lovely sight with falling leaves in crisp sunlight. I’d brought along Talitha’s fairy dress, knowing that if she saw other children dressed up, she’d want to dress up too. We saw a short witches’ play in the onsite yurt, had a long play in the adventure play park and walked around to see the animals.

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When night fell, we lit the pumpkin I’d carved stars into and set it in the window to welcome trick-or-treaters to our door. Talitha had such fun helping me hand out the Haribo (and fun eating some herself!). We let her stay up a bit later than usual as she wanted to be sure that no more children were coming to our door.

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And yes, I know, we bought ALL the Haribo. Oops.