She has the endless compassion and gentle touch that make her an amazing nurse; she gives the most FABulous hugs; and she can make me laugh until I cry like no one else on earth.
What she is most decidedly not, however, is a crafter and a seamstress. And, coupled with the fact that she and my father weren't super-fans of Halloween in the first place...
...when it came time to dress up for Halloween, I was pretty much on my own.
Which is how I ended up looking like this:
Believe it or not, this actually took some coordination. In Sunday School the week before, my best friend, P, and I discovered we were wearing the same purple dress. One of us said something like, "Hey, what if we both wore them on Halloween and went as...two...girls...wearing the same dress?"
Throw in some horrendous blue eyeshadow circa 1984 and some purple spray-on hair coloring we found at the grocery store, and we were in business.
(Believe it or not -- and I certainly can't -- we actually won second prize in our elementary school's costume contest that year. I think the official name of this costume was "Twin Dolls." Looking at it now, I'm calling it "From Sunday School to Trollopdom in Three Easy Steps.")
And then, there was the year of the saddest homemade clown ever in and of the world, ever ever ever:
As you're squinting at this awful picture (sorry), take a good look at the hair. NOT A WIG. That's my own hair, once again with the spray-on hair coloring, teased out to hay-sus and Aqua-Netted to within an inch of its life. Also please note the lack of a traditional clown nose. My parents apparently did spring for some face paint this year, but the squishy red nose was just too much, it seems.
And my costume? A clown-themed nightgown (that I already owned) and, not pictured, my father's boots. I was also carrying a balloon on a stick, apparently. I have no idea what's happening with that.
OK. So. Am I scarred forever because my mother didn't make me a Pretty, Pretty Princess dress or let me be a witch (I wasn't allowed to be anything evil-y) or help me come up with something really creative like this one brother-sister duo at my school, who once came as toothpaste and a toothbrush?
I won't pretend I didn't kind of long for some of those things. At the time.
But now, I'm kind of glad my parents left me to my own devices. It's made me into a person who always thinks, "Hm...could I make that myself? Let me see what I have lying around the house" instead of just running out and buying something new.
See, Mom? You weren't slacking in the Halloween department; you were teaching me to be resourceful!
OK, one last picture, before I leave you all to trick-or-treat with your little ones and/or gussy it up for your adult-themed Halloween bashes. I was really hoping to find the awful picture of my brother and me dressed up as a Hawaiian (me) and a tourist (him) -- once again wearing our own clothes -- but alas, it has failed to surface.
So you're just going to have to be contented with this picture of me from the time I worked in a haunted house as "The Electric Chair Victim." Once again, my powers of resourcefulness at work, I correctly deduced that electric chair victims aren't dress-up kind of folk. It's much more likely that they'd be wearing a black turtleneck and jeans.
And from the look on my face, it's apparently tiring, soul-sucking work, too:
(Double-kudos to my mom for cutting off the top of my head. At least those all-important knees made the cut. I love you, Mom!)
Happy Halloween! :)