Cecily's Halloween costume lessons learned

April 2, 2010 9:39:13 AM PDT
Last Halloween, Emma was a bumblebee and Luke was a dragon. I picked the costumes out myself (on eBay, to save money) and they were happy to wear whatever I suggested. Luke roared and danced, since apparently, dragons are good dancers, and Emma buzzed around with her little wings and hat.

Life was easy last Halloween. But, now that Luke is 3 1/2, and Emma is 2 ("big kids," as they like to say,) Halloween costume picking has become much more of a challenge.

In early September the costume catalogues began filling the mailbox. I passed them on to my children, letting them choose their own costume. Luke just HAD to be Spiderman. But not the usual red one, the reversible, muscular Spiderman that is red on one side and black on the other. So, I call, more than a month before Halloween, and Luke's size is already sold out. "How about Batman, or Superman, or the dragon from last year," I pleaded. No dice. It HAD to be the muscular, black/red reversible Spiderman.

So, I start surfing the net and find the costume on one website, but had to buy the gloves, headpiece and boot covers from three other websites. How can costumes sell out so quickly? I don't even want to add up what the complete ensemble cost, with all the separate shipping charges.

Emma wasn't quite as tough. At my suggestion, she was happy to pick Little Red Riding Hood (or Little Red Riding FOOT, as Emma calls her.) She looks adorable and doesn't even mind the hood.

Now that the costumes are in the house, I've learned some very important lessons I would like to pass on to other parents:

1. Buy early, since the popular costumes DO sell out months ahead of time.

2. Once you get the costumes, hide them until Halloween! Sure, you are tempted to have your little one try the costume on to see it fits. DON'T! Worn once, your child will want to wear the costume all the time. Little Red Riding Hood's hood is getting frayed on the edges and her basket has taken quite a bit of wear and tear. Luke's Spiderman hood and gloves have disappeared. I'm hoping a careful search of the house over the next week before Halloween will find them.

3. Once the costumes are purchased, throw away all costume catalogues immediately. Don't' even let them in the house! In recent days, Luke has switched his choice to a Power Ranger (he's never even seen the show, but he thinks the costume looks neat.) And Emma wants to be Velma from the Scooby Doo show (would anyone even recognize that costume nowadays?) I'm sticking to my guns: its Spiderman and Little Red Riding "Foot" this year, I just hope I can find Spiderman's hood before trick-or-treating.

Happy Halloween!