Another Week of Questions: Wednesday
Another Week of Questions: Friday

Another Week of Questions: Thursday

This week, I'm asking you questions!


Today's question is about . . . your Halloween memories.

When you were a kid, what do you remember most about Halloween? What kind of costumes did you wear for Halloween? How is Halloween different now . . . than it was when you were a kid?

Halloween 1961

As for me . . . Halloween was an exciting day for me, as a kid. But it was much different than it is now! Much more low-key . . . Our costumes were thrown together at the last moment from whatever we happened to have lying around the house. We did have school Halloween parties, but costumes weren't part of it at my school. And Halloween decorations were more likely to be of the cardboard variety. (We did have a big, jointed, cardboard skeleton I particularly enjoyed "posing" to tape into our living room window.) The photo above (I'm the bunny, by the way, age 2 1/2 and already bossing my younger cousins around . . .) is the ONLY photo of me in a Halloween costume in my collection of family photos! Halloween wasn't such a big deal, and my costumes were nothing to write home about. Times, they do change . . . 

How about YOU?
I'm curious about your Halloween memories!


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I'm glad to see that you don't have one of those awful plastic masks that were so prevalent when we were growing up! We also had the cardboard jointed skeleton, and I posed him until he fell apart. But my best Halloween memories include being Glinda and the nice lady down the street that gave full-size candy bars!


I wasn’t a big fan of dressing up for Halloween, still not. Our costumes were made from things around the house, nothing store bought or sewn for the one night. I know we carved pumpkins but don’t recall any other decorations. Lots of hobos and ghosts. I am not even sure how it is now except that we don’t get any trick or treaters at our door anymore.


Our fun at Halloween began the night before, Doorbell Night. We would run through the neighborhood ring doorbells, beat on trash cans with sticks, and run away and jump in piles of leaves. The neighbors were ready for us and several would hide in bushes to scare us right back. On Halloween I remember the streets in our neighborhood being filled with kids trick or treating. Our costumes were usually thrown together with what we could find in the attic, except for the year my grandmother made costumes for my cousin and I. I was a pilgrim girl and she was a pioneer girl. It took us forever to trick or treat that year because at every house they would have to "look at the costumes Mildred made." At many houses we had to go inside and choose our treats from tables full of goodies, but first we had to sing a song, play a piano piece, or tell a joke. I would always play "Rustic Dance" on the piano as fast as I could. It never seemed as if we were supervised by adults and years later I asked my mother about this. She said all the fathers and grandfathers would hang out on corners and keep an eye on things and maybe keep warm with a nip from their flasks!


I don't think we have pictures of any of our costumes, which is very sad, as mom went all out! She made them for us and my favorite was a blue princess dress with a conical hat and a scarf coming out the top (I guess that was what a princess wore?). Every one of us (three girls) had beautiful costumes (until we turned 12) and the neighborhood was enchanted by us. Mom also made cookies and candies galore! I don't know where she got all the energy. Now, we have a couple of pumpkins and a funny witch on the bookshelves. But I have a sign on the front door that read: The Wicked Witch Lives Here. It's TOO true! lol


We moved into a brand new subdivision when I was going into 3rd grade, and that's where my Halloween memories begin. There were lots of new houses, growing families and KIDS EVERYWHERE! I was never a huge fan of Halloween, except of course for the candy, mainly because I had little imagination when it came to a costume. There was nothing ever purchased, though I think my mom would sew something simple once in a while. I was almost always a hobo! I recall one family always gave out full-sized candy bars, but they'd creak open the door and you'd have to stick your hand inside... something (a fur-lined sack seems likely)... to get it! I'd go out, get some loot, and then enjoyed coming home to hand out candy myself -- and see what everyone was wearing, because I was always awestruck by the creative costumes! One very memorable year a man dressed all in black, including a ski mask, swooped in the front door and gave Mom a twirl then dashed off to the next house, all around the neighborhood... no one ever 'fessed up!

I recall getting frustrated with my own kids because they'd want to be "X" and I'd start to prepare/make, and then they'd change their mind and want to be "Z"! I made an adorable Raggedy Ann costume for preschool Kate one year (when I was still the boss). And I have always enjoyed other people's costumes & creativity... a mini Nefertiti came to the door one year, and her brother was an astronaut with Pringles cans lashed together as his "backpack," which is also where candy was deposited... HANDS-FREE, so brilliant!

Marilyn Stein

Halloween was basically nonexistant, for my family, when I was a kid. I remember one year that I went Trick or Treating to a neighbor's house. And just that one house. Since I didn't grow up with it, I wondered what all the hoopla was when my kids got to that age. The boys weren't always happy with their homemade costumes but we all survived!


My mom always made me a Halloween costume and I remember some pretty great ones. She made them for Hannah, too, while she was alive. My mom really loved any holiday so we celebrated all of them. I can remember her cutting out silhouettes of witches on broomsticks from black construction paper and taping them on the picture window of our living room. Your side eye in that bunny costume is on point!


I was 6 or 7 the Halloween Mom made a witch costume, complete with a tall, pointed hat I thought was the coolest thing ever. And surely the focal point! To complete the outfit Mom allowed my long, red, naturally curly hair to Do Its Own Thing, releasing it from its subduing braids. I guess it really fit the costume's character, because every Halloween (for six decades!) Mom repeats the same story about that night: As I was leaving one house, behind my back but within earshot of my mom, one woman said to another, "Do you think that hair is real?" To which the other woman responded, "My god, I hope not!".

Patty before trick or treat as it was a Holy Day the next day and we had to go of course...spaghettios with hot dogs for a quick supper and finally getting the freedom to go without parents! I lived in a neighborhood so it was very fun. The costumes...nothing special...pretty much the awful masks and too many clothes under the costume! And then...the big candy sort once you got back home!


I have always loved Halloween! I can still remember a spooky cloudy day sitting in my second grade classroom watching the leaves twirl down. I know I was daydreaming about the excitement of trick or treating with the neighborhood gang. We all gathered at a pre appointed time with a parent or two in charge. My costumes were store bought with the plastic masks though we did get more creative as I got older. How is it different than now? We have no trick or treaters. We live on an old country road where all the houses seem to hold empty nesters. There was a time maybe 12 years ago when I would have former students come to my home to trick or treat. It was so much fun seeing them. I didn’t even care they were in high school. Now we leave the light on but no one comes. Sigh….


When I was growing up, we made costumes from whatever we had around the house. My brothers were cowboys and hobos. I think some years it was cold and we just wore masks and carried pillowcases to collect candy. I do remember one year dressing as Felix the Cat (cartoon character) in black pants and sweatshirt. Somehow I had a hat with cat ears and my Gram made a tail out of black corduroy, a coat hanger and stuffing.


The whole thing was -as most of us remember- more “homemade”. Is anyone a gypsy anymore? Probably not due to the negativity now realized by that term. We had no idea at the time of the stigma attached to that word. It was just a nice catch-all for anything we could wear that we found around the house. Same thing with candy and home-made treats. Safer now that everything should be commercially packaged. Those were such innocent -and apparently clueless - times. (Sorry if this seems like a downer. It’s not meant to be. Just a reflection on how society is constantly changing, even with Halloween).


I am nodding in agreement. Halloween was absolutely not a big deal in my house (and at my Nana's house it was all RED for Reformation! lol) I remember us having some kind of small party in grade school, but I do not remember ever dressing up for it. It certainly has changed over the years!


I went through a period where I was very serious about my Halloween costume. This will come as no surprise, but as a crafty person, I made my own costume several times. My absolute favorite was as a carousel/merry-go-round. I got a big piece of foam rubber that I cut into a circle with a hole for my head. I poked small holes for dowel rods around the outside and drew and cut out horses from poster board that I attached to the dowels. I spray-painted a styrofoam ring and hung it up to be a brass ring. I added some trim to the outside of the foam and even got a little music maker button thing that I could press. To put it all together, I turned on the music and turned slowly around, occasionally dipping to make the horses go up and down. I won a "most creative" award in the school costume contest that year, but when I went trick-or-treating, most people thought I was a wedding cake!

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