Posts Tagged ‘tradition’

A Halloween Story

Sunday, November 1st, 2009

Last night, we took the kids trick or treating, despite the misty rain, and the mud, and the fact that the Gators were still in the midst of kicking Georgia’s ass. Sometimes, it is better to just walk away and eat candy and drink beer.

Rollie was a mummy (Not that fun a costume to put together, and even worse to remove! Like the old school costume ideas, though.) and Tills was a cheerleader. We went to meet neighbors a couple of streets over for a neighborhood tradition. A family has always done a pinata before trick or treating. It started with just a family or two, but over the years, has ballooned to tons of neighborhood kids showing up to take a shot at the pinata. I think they even have two pinatas, one for the big kids and one for the little ones. So many people show up that I dropped candy off the day before to help out. The whole thing is a ball of candy frenzy, but so much fun. It gives the parents a chance to group, pour themselves a drink (everyone has a cup or a rolling cooler with them), chat while the kids wait in line for their turn to whack the pinata, and to check out all the costumes in the floodlights of the driveway. When the pinata finally cracks open, candy rains from the sky, and the scramble for booty begins. One mother in my neighborhood aptly referred to it as “like a scene out of Lord of the Flies.” I loved that book! Perhaps not for everyone, though.

After that, we all give our thanks and head around the loop to trick or treat. The bigger kids race from door to door, their parents yelling, “slow down! It isn’t a race! Wait for your sister! You’re going to trip over something cutting through a dark yard like that! Don’t ring that doorbell! Porch light off means they aren’t giving out candy!” The shrieks and yells carry through the night, echoing off the houses. The parents walk down the middle of the street, then weave to one side or the other, depending on which house the kids are going to. Occasionally, the kids stop at the parents to yell excitedly that a certain house gave a certain something awesome. Some houses have scary stuff – motion-activated sound machines or mummies and vampires that pop up when the kids approach the steps. One got Tiller so bad that she turned around and ran back across the yard, to the sound of myself and todd roaring in laughter. Parents drag coolers or wagons or push strollers (they make great drink transportation!) The little ones get tired about 3/4 of the way and start dragging and wanting up to be carried or in the wagon. (“Baby, Mama’s cooler’s in the wagon. You better keep walking.”) We finally finish the loop and head home, the kids wild-eyed and digging into their candy before we get there. We visit the old folks around us, which we should have done before going to the pinata, but damn it, Mummies are hard to wrap. The old folks make over the kids and the kids stumble over their words trying to explain everything that they saw, and who was dressed up as what.

Then you get home, and you let the kids have some candy. (Yes, we are terrible and limited their intake right before bed. We wash off mummy makeup and take off saddle oxfords and tights and tuck them into bed, visions of pumpkins and candy dancing in their heads.

Then we rummage through their candy, and pour ourselves a drink. Finally, we walk out into the carport to blow out the candles in the pumpkin and step on a pile of muddy shoes, twisting our ankle and bumping our head on the brick wall, our screams of agony resonating throughout the neighborhood under a Waxing Gibbous moon. We limp back to the couch with the help of our husband, who brings us a water, Ibuprofen, a bag of frozen fruit, and a beer. We prop our foot up, icing it and watching The Night of the Living Dead.


Friday, June 1st, 2007

So, I pride myself on the fairly healthy meals we serve to the children. I cook most nights and we eat at home a lot, but I am not a nazi about it. My kids are really healthy eaters, and will eat a lot, including the good stuff. They eat broccoli, green beans, and even salad. No, I am not kidding. I am very proud of myself for having the balls to continue giving them things until they learn to like them, because teaching kids to eat veggies is not for the faint of heart.

We do usually eat out on Thursday and/or Friday nights. It is kind of a tradition in the family. Another tradition is that if the kids are good, I let them have the golden arches for lunch on Fridays. Sure, it is bribery (“If you are good in school all week, then you can have french fries on Friday.”) but every good parent knows that bribes are part of the game.

The problem with McD’s Fridays is that I have NO WILLPOWER when it comes to ordering them the french fries, and me the salad or whatever else is healthy on the menu. (I wouldn’t know what is healthy on the menu, because I’ve never once opted for the healthy choice when at a drive-through window.)

That may change, though. Call me an exercise anorexic or what you will, but I had the Quarter Pounder with Cheese Value meal (with diet coke, of course!) and I felt like crap afterwards. Decided I would maybe go to the gym to work it off.

Here’s the deal:

Calories in Quarter Pounder with Cheese = 510
Calories in Large Fries = 570
Calories burned in one hour of swimming (what i thought i would do today as cross-training, since i am doing my long run tomorrow) = For my weight, a little over 563 calories.

I would have to swim for two hours straight to work off that fucking burger and fries. I am never eating them again. Ever.

Tell me I said that if you ever see me eat that shit again.

Then duck.

New Year’s Recap

Wednesday, January 3rd, 2007

Night started off slow, with me laying a base of soup and salad at the nicest Olive Garden ever. Todd’s Mom says so, and she should know, because she lives in that mecca of fine dining that is Dadeville, Alabama. I also had a latte at Starbucks in an attempt to jumpstart my very hung over body while Todd chatted with the Turks. No doin’ on lighting a fire under me; It wasn’t until I arrived at Iain’s and choked down that first beer that I started feeling a little better. I had grandiose plans of dressing up, even maybe wearing a skirt, but I was lucky to get there in one piece, much less to change out of jeans and t-shirt. I threw on my fluffy-fringey sweater in an attempt to give myself some style and just ended up looking like a Smashing Pumpkins’ D’arcy wanna-be from 1991. You will notice only one picture of me in the whole New Year’s set on Flickr. This is not coincidence.


  • Black-eyed peas and greens and Iain and Annie’s Crappy Cornbread Quiche.
  • Todd drinking brown liquor is always a highlight. He starts gesturing with his hands more, and he likes to stir the ice in his glass with a cute little tinkle. He gets a bounce in his step that he only ever gets when he is drinking liquor. (Bounce has been known to morph into him falling backwards on his ass in the basement at Gravity Pub, but he was drinking vodka tonics that night, so we cannot blame that on the revered bourbon whiskey.)
  • Watching people strip down and display body art and mutilation in the largest fucking bathroom in Alabama was pretty entertaining.
  • No evening is ever complete until you have cleared the whole living room of furniture so as to perform a few numbers from Grease, replete with male and female parts, and dancing on remaining furniture.
  • Finally, and this one is so obvious, but I will say it anyway: I am so cute when I am drinking. Everyone says so.

The only thing missing was the people that I couldn’t be with this year, but they are always in my thoughts, and just as soon as I make that first million off Dogwood Girl, I am going to buy a farm and start a commune where we can all live together. Right after Lisa and I buy the Sea-Doo. It’s gonna happen – 2007: The Year of Big Dreams. Who’s with me?