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      Posting these cat-cartoons-without-the-cartoon was a long journey that I don’t know if I’ll repeat soon again. A daily blog is tough … even when you have your material handed to you! But, I couldn’t have done it without the artwork … Continue reading →
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As holidays go, that one was a bust

Posted by joeabbott on November 1, 2014

WP_20141026_018While our yearly exploits at Halloween have tamed considerably from the ambitious costuming we used to do, our modern traditions remain a local highpoint as we settle into the Pacific Northwest autumn rainy season. Every year we get together with some much-loved in-laws, carve pumpkins, and share an evening meal and good time. On the day of Halloween itself, we make sure we’re home early from work, we put out modest decorations, light our pumpkins, and bring out the full-sized candy bars: a reward for those Trick-or-Treaters who are willing to climb our long-ish driveway.

WP_20141026_021WP_20141026_020aWP_20141026_019

Next to the bowl of candy is a pad of paper and pen; we capture the number of Halloween revelers who visit our door each year. Our busiest year was just under 60 kids; last year in the rain and with Halloween on a weeknight, we saw 27 or so. This year we had high expectations: the rain had stopped earlier in the day and it would be dry the entire evening, the holiday was on a Friday, and the temps were chill but not frigid.

Our count: 12. What?!!? Not even a baker’s dozen!

WP_20141026_024Knowing our house can look a bit darker as it’s set back a touch, we placed cheap, solar-powered lanterns up the driveway (that were even giving a bit of light), we had a strand of pumpkin lights we ran along the stair handrail, and we even placed a plastic pumpkin bowl around one of the garage lights to send the signal: candy here! And that was in addition to the usual two jack-o-lanterns, lighted plastic pumpkin in the window, and ensuring all lights visible from the road were on.

WP_20141026_003Twelve visitors.

The giddy prospect of having 48 full-sized candy bars to myself is dimmed by concerns of early onset diabetes, but we’re wondering what happened there. We don’t have children so it’s a small measure of fun to dote on little ones who dress up, look precious, happily yell their greeting, and then squeal as they get their choice of treat from the Costco pack of M&Ms (plain and peanut), Snickers, or Twix. Twix is the clear winner amongst the children and I’m usually happy when I can enjoy a late-night Snickers after finally turning off the lights … but having a full box and then some to get through? Wow.

Both Suzy and I looked out at the very quiet neighborhood and wondered whether it was changing family demographics, if our immediate neighbors’ dimmed lights kept had kids at bay, or what. But, after our early meal and going over this year’s voting ballots and measures, we served up the few treats to the few Trick-or-Treaters, blew out our pumpkins, dimmed the rest of the lights and headed off to bed.

Maybe we just need a few more lights next year. And, as usual, Suzy did a much better job than I in pictorially capturing our Halloween gathering with Steve, Julie, and David; check out the Suz Blog for some great shots!

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