Pumpkins. Food. Costumes. Food. Candy. And food.

There are so many things about our Halloween celebration that I love.

I love the dressing up and the treats. I love the combination of purple, orange, black, and green (It's all very 60's mod to me, but that's not important right now).

I love the cute decorations. (These were from a particularly brilliant last minute pdf. download thanks to Elle's Studio.)

How cute is that hanging banner thingy?

Happy halloween

And these adorable treat bags? Totally inspired.

Treat bags

My mom was helping us fill them. That's her under the blanket. Let's just say that our personal body temperatures are in conflict right now. (I keep my house at an arctic - according to her -  72 degrees.) ;-)


I love the fun, if sometimes stressful, party preparations. And I love cooking for a houseful of appreciative and hungry teenagers.

But my most favoritest (<---that should be a word) thing about Halloween are pumpkins. Excuse me, jack-o-lanterns.

So I always get a big pile of pumpkins and that's the first thing our guests do. They get to choose a design and carve a pumpkin.

Pumpkin carving 2 

And believe me, once they choose their pumpkins, they get down to the serious business of carving.

Pumpkin carving  

I figure the pumpkin carving activity is a great ice breaker (not that this particular group needs it - they are, seriously, the BEST group of teens).

But with their hands and brains occupied (and a very cool Halloween music mix playing in the background) they start to relax together and they get to be social as they talk and laugh and compare designs. Added bonus: the adults hang out in the background and we get to enjoy each other as well.

Pumpkin carving 8 

And of course, they start to loosen up and quickly become their wonderful silly selves.

This is what happens when teenage boys encounter latex gloves...

Glove head

All that pumpkin carving takes tremendous energy and so they build up an appetite. (Which always makes me happy because that means I have People To Feed.)


I love when they all finally get into their costumes. How sweet is this? Jonathan is the black thing with the big hands in the center. He's supposed to be a Nazgul. But you'd have to be a Lord of the Rings geek (which we are) to get it.


They cruise up and down our street for the Ritual Candy Collection while we set up the Great Darby Backyard Movie Theater.

Last night's movie was the classic "Young Frankenstein" with Gene Wilder. (One of my all-time favorites. I used to work at a movie theater when I was in college and it played for something like 32 weeks and so I know it completely by heart, but that's not important right now, either.)

I have the greatest most generous friends who baked (!) and added to the volume of Sugar Consumption. (We live in a peanut-butter-and-jelly type neighborhood and always have a ton of trick-or-treaters, so most of the candy in the bowls was gone by the end of the night. PHEW!)

More food

But my most especially favoritest (<---it's a good word!) part of our Annual Halloween Extravaganza is the moment when the ice-breaker-party-activity-of-the-early-evening becomes...

The Most Awesome Jack-O-Lantern Display of the Neighborhood.

Pumpkin walk 

PS. It goes without saying that a good time was had by all.  ;-)


"I laughed. I cried. It moved me, Bob." ~ Larry the Cucumber