What has happened to Halloween?
When we were younger a black bin liner with holes cut through for your head and arms and a false face (back in the day we didn’t call them masks) was suffice to make a scary costume.
But, alas, today that won’t cut it.
And I am afraid this year I have joined the league of parents who are gluing, sticking and pasting cardboard, tinfoil and whatever else it takes to make an ‘original’ costume. Or at least something no one else has dressed up as before in the school fancy dress competition. It gets harder every year. I have the misfortune that my youngest daughter is in school with children whose parents are VERY creative……and their children win a lot. And deservedly so…..I mean these people could be working in the costume department of a movie set.
We’ve had some successes in the past with my older children but my youngest daughter has never won. She is ten years old and was born with a rare chromosome disorder which impacts on her learning ability. She struggles at school, not only with the curriculum but also with developing friendships. She isn’t autistic but certainly has some traits which can make life very challenging for her…..and us. Her self-esteem and self-confidence has taken quite a battering and I would love for her to feel good about school for a change.
Of course, I tell her it’s all about the taking part and not about the winning, but secretly I want her to win. Or, maybe not so secretly, as my older children tell me I’ve turned into one of those competitive dance moms……now that is scary!
But what to go as? She has her own little quirks and very firm ideas about the way things should be. In the past I’ve come up with various ideas and she has flat out refused to go with any of them. She wants to be a zombie every year and this won’t cut it in a class of costumes such as, the rotten cookie, or the haunted house, never mind the head on a plate!
But she has surprised me this year as she came up with the idea of dressing up as an iPad. Maybe not very scary, but original, as no one in school has gone as one before. And from my point of view an iPad would be easy to make, wouldn’t it?
Without further ado off I went to gather the materials. Usually I make do with what I have at home but not this year. Oh no! This year I went all out to get proper materials. I scoured the internet to find ideas for making iPad costumes and I found one which recommended using foam filled poster board. After traipsing around the stationery shop, the art shop, the discount store and finally the office suppliers and no one had even heard of bloody foam filled poster board, far less stock it, I realised this was going to be a lot harder than I thought.
Ah a mothers lot is a hard one.
But help was on hand. A friendly guy at the office suppliers offered me a massive cardboard box he was about to dump. It was better than nothing and he even offered to fold it up and carry it out to the car for me. Now who could refuse an offer like that? Especially when it didn’t cost me anything!
Back at home and everything else went to pot. Children went hungry, as I like a woman possessed, fought with the cardboard box until it yielded to the scissors. I have an iPad so I was able to copy it exactly for our costume. I did get very technical and measured everything to make sure it was in proportion. (Yes, I think it’s fair to say I’ve gone over into dance mom territory). Three coats of white emulsion paint, wrapping paper, (two rolls for the price of one), and icons which my daughter had printed off from the internet, and we were good to go. And here is the finished product…..
Not bad, even if I do say so myself.
And more importantly….SHE WON!!!