October 20, 2011

A Medieval Halloween

I learned from others' past experiences that dressing up like a fourteenth-century wench has the curious effect of diminishing one's authority as a medievalist.

It is for this reason that I have largely steered clear of medieval-themed Halloween costumes...until now.

Things dramatically changed when I found a portion of a King Arthur costume in my husband's size at a local party goods store. The outfit was missing a shoulder pad and an elastic boot strap. It also had a large rip in the faux chain mail helmet.

I pointed out all of these deficiencies to the store manager when I asked him for a 50% discount.

"Everyone is going to be a person from the Middle Ages for Halloween this year!" I announced later that evening.

"No way!" cried Cortlen, as he crossed his arms. "I want to be a Transformer again."

"Call yourself whatever you want," I told him, "But you're wearing this knight costume."

I showed my son the costume I had just ordered him on the Internet.

Camber and Kellen accepted their combined fate stoically. "Whatever," my daughter said, flipping her hair. "I'm getting too old for Halloween anyway." Then she marched off to her room to play Barbies.

The only person not okay with wearing a medieval costume was--and still is--my youngest. Cameron's problem has less to do with the adorable/fierce monster costume that Pottery Barn so graciously sent me, but the fact that he isn't interested in any kind of clothing these days.

Showing him a picture of Grendel (the monster from Beowulf) on the Internet didn't help the cause.

"Ooh! Scary! That's you!" I exclaimed.

Cameron replied by spitting on the costume.

Classy, I know.

"What if I throw in this awesome sword?" I said, producing a large plastic saber from behind my back.

Moderately interested, but still not enough to put on the costume.

Having my children model their costumes after they came in the mail did nothing to encourage my three year-old to put on his.

As a last resort, we decided to practice trick-or-treating.

"Happy Halloween!" I shrieked when he knocked on my bedroom door.

"Icky!" he screamed and threw the piece of candy I had just dropped into his plastic pumpkin bucket.

Evidently, Tootsie Rolls are not his favorite.

With 10 day to go, I'm starting to lose hope. Why can't he just make me happy and wear the stinkin' monster costume?

Last year, I had the cutest alligator costume for him. Which he also refused to wear.

{insert mourning over what might have been}

Earlier this evening, I was at the mall with my daughter, shopping for a baby shower gift.

"Awww," she cooed, fingering a ruffly dress at Gymboree. "Why didn't you ever dress me up in clothes like this when I was little?" By this point she had her hands on her hips.

The mere memory of my daughter as a three year-old gave me the cold shivers.

I regret that I didn't take pictures of the closet full of ruffly dresses that she refused to wear because now she doesn't believe that it actually existed. She thinks I dressed her like a hobo throughout her toddler and preschool years just to be mean, and to ruin her wedding montage video.

How soon we forget.


happyfamily said...

I have no power over my kids' halloween costume choices either. Usually I would bribe them to do what I want, but as candy is the main byproduct of Halloween, it's not going to work in this case.

Blythe said...

What makes kids think they get any say in what they wear, huh?

Oh... maybe it's because we can't actually force them into clothing most of the time. Sigh.

Mom of 12 said...

You are just too nice! I tell my kids that if they don't like it they are welcome to stay home and clean their rooms. You can share that with yours if you think it will help. Course then you will have to go out and buy your own Halloween candy since you can't tax what you don't have.

Rudd Family Circus said...

And ruin her wedding montage...... HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA

Anonymous said...

You. Are. Hilarious!

Christine said...

Ha ha...I've given up with my boys for Halloween costumes. We've been at the store and hour before the trunk or treat forcing one son to pick out SOMETHING. This year both my boys "don't know" what they want to be. I'm not even thinking about it...I have their costumes from last year waiting in the wings if it gets to the final hour. Gone are the days that I planned ahead for months, sewing their costume by hand...

Beth @ Sand To Pearl said...

Ha! Last year I made my son a dinosaur tail as his costume. It was great, he didn't notice it, and it still looked like he was in a costume. This year... well, some days he thinks it'll be fun to dress up, but other days, well, hopefully Halloween works out, otherwise I might scour the house for that silly tail...

Rocket Ma'am said...

Don't fight it. You live in Florida where it's warm. Let him go as Captain Underpants.
I was thrilled beyond words when my twins were zombies last year- Goodwill clothes all ripped up and a 1.99 jar of fake blood. And some traffic cones (if you have to ask, it's hard to explain).

jeorgee said...

The scarier the better in my house! My kids love to be the creepiest costume (fun creepy). It is Halloween after all!

Chrissy Jo said...

My older sister still talks about how my mom dressed her in ugly clothes as a kid... but in all honesty my mom remembers that clothes were a battle she didn't want to have with a three year old, so my sister picked out her OWN CLOTHES! It is funny how we forget.

Rachel :) said...

You're talking about Plants Vs. Zombies, aren't you, Rocket Ma'am? Ha ha, lol

Anonymous said...

Whatever happened to allowing your kids to be whatever they'd like to be for Halloween instead of dictating to them what they'll wear? The excitement of going to the store and picking out your costume was almost as much fun as the buckets of candy.

So much of childhood is being stolen by adults in one form or another, it's really sad.

Nicole said...

Why is there always one anonymous jerk who completely misses the whole point? When you have a screaming 3 year old who, in all reality will hate ANY costume you put him/her in, its not really STEALING their childhood.

jeorgee said...

I think she is entitled to her opinion? Is it a love fest or a blog?

Anonymous said...

I don't suppose you could spare a moment for this fan to give a 1 time vote for my son in a halloween contest on facebook... I'd really appreciate it! Please like page, then scroll down past form, My lil man is in 1st, red demon costume, black wings. Thanks!! http://www.facebook.com/iNetVideo?sk=app_268980443136473

Mrs. Tuna said...

I'm dressing up as a bitch but I'm not so sure it's a costume.

John-n-Mel said...

I also tried to put a costume on my almost 3 year old. As soon as the tiger costume was on he burst into tears and has refused anything put in his face. A Halloween shirt it may be this year. Cheapest costume ever! And after a day of wear almost as scary as the Pottery Barn one you mentioned.

ReadytoSoar said...

Another great one! We will share this at www.readyts.com. Ready to Soar is a learning community for parents and childcare providers. There's a great similar discussion on there.