01 November 2013

Halloween in the Village: attack of the toddlers

I didn't celebrate Halloween as a kid (no, dear parents, dressing up as 'your favourite Reformation martyr' doesn't count), but as an adult, I am a firm fan of the holiday.
Smalls taking a moment out of his busy schedule to show off his costume
In Exeter, we had some truly fantastic parties...although the year I gave L. a wizard hat and putting him in charge of making cocktails was admittedly not one of my most brilliant moments.

Our celebration this year was considerably less alcoholic than previous years. This was primarily due to the fact that over half of the guests were under five.

L. and I don't have the best record with the under-5 set of Halloween revellers. During our first year owning a house in England, we were in a major reconstruction phase involving tearing down all of the plaster in the living room when the door bell rang. It was only when we opened the door to a sea of expectant painted faces that I suddenly remembered it was Halloween night and the candy I bought weeks earlier was still in our old house. The spectre of us, completely covered in plaster dust, was completed by L.'s desperate apology that, 'We're really sorry. We  have no candy. But here, have a.....chunk of brick.' We didn't have another trick-or-treat-er for the remainder of our stay in the 'hood.

This year, I think we managed to get off to a better start with our youngest neighbours.

Halloween isn't celebrated too heavily here, and so I figured we would get a few of the eighteen or so families I invited from the village's toddler group (klubík, which probably deserves a post of its own)

It's a good thing we have a large garden, because nearly all of the mums, toddlers, and siblings that I invited came. At one point, I counted at least twenty-five guests running around.

Some of the action
It was a proper, glorious infestation of screaming toddlers in witches' hats. We had lots of space for them to ride their trikes, a few old mattresses for them to jump on (very popular), some funny Halloween decorations, and enough sugary treats to keep them buzzing for weeks. 

The bonfire at the end was definitely a highlight for all, and full of fire-roasted sausages, the kids toddled home for bath and bed. 

With the last of the guests sent off to bed, L. and I had a drink by the dying bonfire and congratulated ourselves on our first successful attempt at neighbourhood kids + Halloween.

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