Thursday, September 2, 2010

Halloween on my mind

I know it's barely September, but I'm already thinking about Halloween! It's one of my favorite holidays. We should have three Halloween events this year--a costume parade at L's preschool (I plan to dress T up as well, even though she'll just be a spectator); a party with the Eosinophilic support group (so excited for a candy-free event!); and trick-or-treating of course.

For costumes, I bought T a cheerleader outfit at Kmart earlier this summer--it was just with the regular clothes, but I don't know who would dress their daughter in this like a regular outfit, I guess you could. Anyway, I saw it for $7 and jumped on it--for dress-up play, for Halloween, whatever. So I had that in my back pocket, but wasn't sure that was going to be T's main Halloween costume.

Last year, I spent way too much money on costumes. L was a fireman and I got his costume at a reasonable price at Party City plus a coupon (maybe $20 down to $15 with coupon?). But I chose at the last minute a dalmation costume for T (get it? fireman and fire dog) and it cost a lot--$25 or $30 I can't remember, I don't think I even had a coupon, maybe I did, but I regret it because T wouldn't even wear the hat so she didn't even look like a dog and she's never worn it again. No more expensive costumes, I say! I set a $15 costume budget for each kid (meaning I only had $8 left for T after the cheerleader). {And you should know I pretty much always exceed my "budget" by a buck or two. I'm a work-in-progress.}

A few days ago, my BFF mentioned how she had scored great costumes for cheap at her local second-hand kids' store. As I was driving to my Depo shot this morning, I passed our local kids' resale shop and thought "I should check there on the way home"--and that's what I did. First I strolled around the store, looking at this and that and suddenly I see a rack and realize, hey these are Halloween costumes. I check T's size first and oh the cuteness! Long story short, Dorothy costume for $5, medieval maiden (or princess) costume for $4. Yeehaw! {Dorothy+maiden+cheerleader=$16, one dollar over budget.} Then I try L's size, I'm mostly disappointed but then I spot a cape. I think it's meant to be a vampire cape because of the pointy collar, but L loves playing magician (not to mention superheroes) so I snatch it up for $3. He's been wearing it all afternoon.:-) That doesn't solve Halloween for him necessarily (though a magician would make a super simple costume, just need a hat and wand), but it's a wonderful addition to our dress-up stash.

I'm giving myself a $5 budget for Halloween "stuff," so I'll probably just shop the dollar store. Also if I earn any dollars from exercising, I can add that to my Halloween budget. Actually, because Halloween is a favorite holiday of mine, I have a pretty good stash of decorations and stuff. I don't really need anything, it's just fun to add to my collection. (Hopefully I can add even more when stuff is on clearance after the holiday. And the last two years, when Hubby and others have asked what I want for my (early October) birthday, I include fall and Halloween decorations as a suggestion. I'll be doing that again this year.)

Stay tuned, I plan to do "Top Ten" posts for both Halloween costumes and Halloween "stuff" I love, and maybe a birthday wish list too.

Also, at least T and maybe L will get a treat bucket. L has a Thomas the Train bucket we bought for his second Halloween, but he mentioned he'd rather have a pumpkin this year. So I'm thinking a $1 pumpkin bucket for each of them (then maybe I can snag fancier buckets on clearance for next year). I covet the luscious puffy baskets from Pottery Barn, but those are not in the budget at this time. Oh well! {You can be sure those will show up on the top ten "stuff" list.}

With today's super successful shopping trip, I'm feeling optimistic that both kids will be well-outfitted this Halloween.

Also, for any allergy moms out there I should mention how we do the candy thing. What we've done every year and plan to do again (even though in theory there is some candy L can eat, like plain Hershey Kisses) is trade L's candy from parties and trick-or-treating for a toy. Last year this was made even easier because one house gave out toy cars (real Cars cars!) and when we got home, that's what L wanted out of his bucket. He played with the cars, we hid his candy and no problem! I assume we'll commandeer T's candy this year too and trade it for a toy, since she's too young to care. Add that to the Halloween budget, a small toy for each kid ($1-3).

I'd love to go to a pumpkin patch again this year. Last year we went to one in Glendale and that was a bad idea--it was way too hot! We'll see if we can travel north for a day trip to cooler weather for pumpkin-picking.

That reminds me, T has a Halloween shirt I got on clearance. Last year, my parents bought both kids a Halloween t-shirt and I enjoyed dressing them in that basically all of fall. That's something I'd like to do again. As I said, I have one for T, now if I can just find something for L for less than $5 (now that I know they can actually get some wear out of it). Walmart here I come. ;-)

Okay, I think that's all my Halloween thoughts for now. Look for more Halloween themed posts in the weeks ahead--love it!!!

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