I switched off NPR as I turned into our alley. A young girl about 8, ran past the front of the van. Her witch hat bounced with each step, and the fake green hair of her wig wriggled as she ran. A few other neighborhood kids scurried past my van on their way to the H's house for the hot dog party.
I smiled as I figured my girls would be waiting for me at the back door. Their faces would be eager, and their bodies would be jumping around to the tune of "Mommy is home! Mommy is home!"
My assumption lived up to its expectation. :)
We immediately ascended the stairs to the girls' room, and found the princess costumes which would adorn my beauties. Meghan could barely contain her enthusiasm as Halloween was perhaps the most exciting thing ever in her entire life. She bounced, skipped, and clung closely to me as I gathered all the necessary components of her "most-beautiful" Tinkerbell costume. I kept picturing that little puppy in the Loony Tunes cartoon that would jump over Spike the bulldog as he marched down the street. "Is it time yet? Is it time yet? I want my costume on! I want my costume on! Is it weddy (ready) yet Mommy?"
I didn't answer, but Grace felt the need to fill my silence. "Meghan, Mommy is almost done. I'll go get your wand." I grabbed Grace's costume too.
"Meghan, come here. Your costume is ready."
She wiggled and danced as I pulled the white turtleneck shirt over her head. Next, she put her hands on my shoulders as she stepped into the Tinkerbell green dress. She slipped her arms into her Tinkerbell wings, and finally wriggled on some "leg socks" to complete the ensemble. I straightened out her shirt underneath the bodice of her dress, and Meghan danced and twirled and jigged around the room. "I'm a beautafull Tinka Bell! I'm a beautafull Tinka Bell!"
She really did look like Tinkerbell. She is pixie-like in most ways physically, and her yellowy blond hair accentuated the whole look. I thought, "Wow, she is too frickin cute in this."
"Mooommmmmmy! I want my dress on," Grace emphatically shouted as she realized that Meghan had gotten dressed first.
"Hold on Gracie, I'm looking for your tiara. Where did it go?"
"I don't know. Meghan must have taken it."
"Well, it is gone Grace. I can't find it here in your pigsty of a bedroom Grace."
"Meghan did it!"
"Grace, no she didn't. It is here somewhere, though. How about we put this barrette in your hair instead?"
"Okay, Mommy. I like that one."
I thought, "Wow, that was so easy...almost too easy. It must be the allure of the candy that is keeping the tantrum at bay today. Wow!"
Earlier, Grace had not seemed as excited as Meghan, but all of a sudden, she could no longer stand still either. Her enthusiasm came in the form of jumping up and down, as I attempted to catch her limbs in rhythm with the jumps.
Grace slipped on her white long sleeved shirt, and I found the Barbie, Princess Rosella, Island Princess dress of low quality material, but exceptionally sparkly and glittery fabric. The turquoise "chiffon" clung to her arms, and I pulled her long blond locks out of the back of her shirt. She also wriggled into her white tights, and then spun around in a few twirls. Her costume shimmered as she spun.
"Mommy, we forgot my feathers."
"Okay Grace. Let's put them on now."
I fastened the pseudo peacock feathers to her dress, and wondered to myself just why exactly would a girl princess have boy peacock feathers. Her long blond hair helped her to look like Barbie, too. She was beautiful. She is getting so big so fast. Where did my baby Grace go?
The transformation was complete. Princess Grace and Pixie Meghan were ready for the fun. They both raced downstairs to gulp down some dinner before heading out for their candy rewards.
After dinner, we opened the glow stick packages. Their cousins Chloe, Molly, and Trey had arrived, and were coming along in their most beautiful princess ensembles too. Chloe wore a hot pink Jasmine costume, and Molly was a Cinderella bride. Molly wore her Aunt Laurie's veil, which made me smile. Her Aunt went to Heaven in 2004 shortly after Meghan was born, and I know that Laurie would have loved seeing Molly wearing it with pride. Their baby brother, Trey, was in a darling little monkey costume.
I cracked and snapped the sticks, and a soft purple hue glowed brightly in my hands. I put a glow stick in each of their pumpkin buckets, and we headed for the front hall closet. All the girls clamored for their coats. Simply put, they were "itching" to get out the door, and it made me giggle a bit.
As we walked down the front path, the leaves rustled under our feet. Pumpkins glowed orange. Ghosts, gobblins, witches, princesses, and parents moved about gathering the booty.
Grace enjoyed holding Molly's hand as they paired up down the sidewalk. Meghan clutched my index finger, and pulled me up each path to the houses. Chloe wondered aloud to herself why nobody seemed to know who she was. Afterall, it was easy to see that she was Jasmine from the movie Aladdin.
A few times, Meghan's enthusiam could not be contained, and she would let go of my hand as she bolted to catch up with the big girls. Her orange pumpkin bucket jiggled and her Tinkerbell wings bounced up and down in cadence with her steps. "Hey guys, wait foooorrrr meeeeeeee!"
Grace and Molly continued to walk hand-in-hand with their pumpkin buckets in their free hands, and then I noticed that I had forgotten to take Grace's peacock feathers off. They were now sticking straight up out the back of her jacket near her neck.
"Do you want me to take your feathers off Grace?"
"Nut uh Mommy. I like them. They're kinda like a turtle neck."
My sisters and my brother's girlfriend walked with us. It was a warm evening compared to some of our past Halloween's here in the frozen tundra.
It made me remember running around as a girl with my sisters and brothers. It seems so long ago now. Life seems to be speeding at a faster pace as I get older now.
I want to savor each moment of tonight. Meghan's Tinkerbell wings bouncing up and down in the shadows. Grace's hand firmly placed into Molly's. Chloe's independence. Trey shuffling down the sidewalk with his Monkey ears at attention. Molly's light up shoes. Charlie and his Mom proudly handing out candy while a fake skull shouted out spooky sayings. Kristen and Bob enjoying their little man. Lauren and Sarah guiding the girls and Lia. Our neighbors gathered around. Children laughing, running, and getting spooked. Children with sugar highs. Children being children. Adults yearning to be children again. Adults soaking in the traditions. People living life.