Tuesday, November 17, 2015

A Halloween Mommy Daughter Date

Halloween was a little bit different this year. Kind of more a mommy/daughter date than anything.

Julianne's main Halloween to-do had already come and gone so she headed off to a more casual sort of party for the evening with some friends.

Brandon swore he was bringing a bunch of gymnastics buddies home to celebrate Halloween in our very festive and carnival-like neighborhood...but at the last minute they ended up staying at another kid's house and trick-or-treated there. (Costume-less because Brandon's Hercules get-up that he insisted I purchase for him was still here at the house. Guess what he's going to be dressing up as next year??)

And then Heather scored herself some tickets to the Garth Brooks concert (lucky duck!) and apologetically pulled out of our annual Halloween traditions.

So, just Lilian and me. Luna Lovegood and a bank robber. And though Lilian was good natured about it overall, there were a couple of times she would comment, "I miss Noah. He'd run to the door with me. Now I have to do it by myself." Cause you know...it wasn't like her 42-year old mom was going to do much more than stand on the side walk in front of each house and cheer her on. And hold her increasingly heavy bucket of candy as the evening wore on. After two hours of trick-or-treating the orange jack-o-lantern bucket was completely full to overflowing and I can totally understand why she didn't want to carry it herself. I didn't want to carry it! That thing was heavy! Plus I was also trying to keep track of her scarf and my phone....all while continuously adjusting my black hat that didn't seem to want to stay put on the back of my head despite the bobby pins. And while peering through a black bank robber mask that was getting more and more irritating the longer I had it on.

But, candy galore. And hot cocoa at the bishop's house. And an Alice in Wonderland theme at the Elliott's. And the traditional Shadows of Fear haunted house down the street. (Which we didn't go through but did get close enough to for Lilian to hang out with a fire juggling clown. And he was creepy!) I think my favorite part of the evening though, was when we walked past a group of boys Lilian's age. She said hello to them all and then as we walked away one of the boys said to another..."Did you see Lilian? She looked SO pretty!!!" Lilian got a big grin on her face, but continued to walk on all coyly like she hadn't overheard. I couldn't help but laugh.

We checked in with Dad who had been manning the door at our house and updated him on the evening's festivities when we got home. Then we sorted and counted candy and settled in to watch "The Nightmare Before Christmas" (Lilian), and peruse Facebook and Instagram to see everyone's Halloween costume pictures (me). It was a good night...but we will be happy to hopefully have Brandon,  Noah and the gang all back with us again next year.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Costume party at Abravanel Hall

Every year the Utah Symphony puts on a Halloween themed concert. Patrons and musicians alike are invited to dress up...there is even a costume contest. Music consists of classical music that has been used in Halloween-ish movies or maybe has a Halloween (ie: spooky) sound or theme. And though tickets to hear the symphony are never overly priced to begin with, this concert especially is very reasonable as it is billed as family friendly.

We decided to go. Originally we wanted to take the whole family but what with Brandon having a gymnastics workout and Julianne being swamped with last-week-of-term essays, projects and test studying, Lilian was the only one who could come. But hey, a little one-on-one with our youngest is never a bad thing, yes? Lilian's Halloween costume for this year was Luna Lovegood...a witch from the Ravenclaw house at Hogwarts. And that fit in nicely with this year's symphony theme, because the entire second half of the concert was to be devoted to music from the Harry Potter movies.

Bryan did not have time to dress up seeing as we picked him up directly from work after a long day of teaching. (Truth be told, I'm not sure he would've dressed up anyhow?) I wore all my Doctor Who apparel that I collected for our trip to Comic Con earlier this year. And as always, I got a lot of compliments on my exploding TARDIS Van Gogh dress and blue TARDIS knee socks. (And overheard people around me saying things like, "Look at her Doctor Who dress! It's the TARDIS! That's so cool!") I do wish I had brought along my red fez... oh well, next time.

Because of her "spectrespects," Lilian was very obviously Luna Lovegood, rather than just some random Hogwarts students from Ravenclaw. So she was delighted when people would pass her and say, "Hey Luna!" Or "Wasup, Luna?" Obviously with the theme of the music, there were a lot of Hogwarts themed costumes. Even the conductor was dressed up as Cho Chang...also from Ravenclaw house.

I had to laugh at the symphony member's costumes, many of them were so creative and just hilarious. How do you play your instrument when you are decked out in a huge shark costume? Lilian was delighted with the couple of violinists who were dressed up as Joy and Disgust from the movie "Inside Out." One of the bassoonists was dressed as El Nino with a big cloud on his head. The brass section was dressed as "the Breakfast Club"....bacon, eggs, etc. The tympani section were covered entirely in gold paint. Statues of some sort. My favorite? The harpist dressed as a loofah. I was worried Lilian might get bored after awhile, but she adored the whole thing. It was such a fun night...and of course, the music was phenomenal. Maybe we'll go again next year?