Friday, October 16, 2015

Books, Babies, and A Dollar Store Halloween

The Munsters were great at pumpkin placement and always had everything figured out. Smoky booze included.

Afternoon Readers,

Ok, I'm finally getting organized. My life is in order. Everything is as it should be.

Kidding!

I like to give myself those pep talks in times of high stress, crisis, and when I figure out I forgot to buy coffee the day before. I majored in English, but I also have a minor in false hope. Things happening right now:

1. The Beer's Folded and the Laundry's Cold hits shelves on MONDAY!

(Tune in for a BIG giveaway and so many free pairs of cankles, you won't be able to fit in your shoes.)

2. I can barely walk because I'm carrying a baby that may weight fourteen pounds. Need definitive data, but almost 100% sure of this. Almost thirty-seven weeks and beyond ready to waddle to the nearest hospital. Just give me a gown, a wheelchair, some free pudding, and get out of my way.

3. I decided right now would be a most excellent time to paint the built-ins in the living room. Because nesting has taken the form of Bob Villa, apparently. I have no urge to clean the bathrooms or organize baby clothes. I want to sheet rock something. Or prime it. Or possibly renovate a bathroom. Whatever. Does anyone have a jigsaw I can borrow?

So, when I'm not stressing myself out with self-imposed deadlines and projects, the fact remains I still have three other children who are adamant about celebrating every holiday that is about to be upon us. Halloween is no exception. Leading with, "But I've gained forty pounds and can't drive you." doesn't stop kids from shoving you towards the van and demanding spooky decor, stat.

"We need bats and pumpkins and skeletons and gravestones."

When we were all in the car, I decided on a last ditch effort to waddle back inside. "What if mommy lets you paint some some old Tupperware with scary faces and then we can pop some candles under them?"

"That'll start a fire. Our teacher told us starting fires is dangerous."

"Right. Don't tell her I said that."

Due to the amount of children now in my care and the sheer volume of things they were intent on dragging home, I made the quick decision the dollar store was the only place equipped enough to enable us to buy three hundred paper pumpkins, pay our taxes, and avoid any further involvement from the IRS. I checked the sign before we barged through the door like a small, Viking hoard.

"Ok, everything is, in fact, a dollar. Now, kids, I want everyone on their best be-"

But they were already gone.

I waddled through the swinging, glass doors as fast I could and looked around frantically. I cornered an old lady. "Excuse me, have you seen children who look like they're out for fake blood? One of them may have tried to poke you out of the way with a Styrofoam sword."

There was a flash of movement on my right. I spun around, just as the three-year-old barreled toward me, arms full of plastic cups in the shape of black cats. "Mom, we need these."

"Fifty of them?"

"Yes."

"But they say, Happy Hallowon. The detailing on the whiskers is good though."

Sundance popped up from behind a display of glow-in-the-dark socks. "Ok, do we need one of these rubber bats or twenty?"

"Two. Wait, one. Check for a specimen that has both wings. Hold on, those might actually be two-for-a-dollar squirrels that got stuck to some wrapping paper."

While I waded through a sea of paper pumpkins and garlands of spider webs, the other twin bounded down the isle with trick or treat bags. "Ok, I got one for everyone, and then we filled them with all the stuff we want."

Hesitantly, I peeked inside. "I admire your spirit, but do we really need eight boxes of spider rings and five skulls?"

"WE need to be scary."

"Honey, we're terrifying already. What if, on Halloween, I just open up the van doors and let everyone see what it looks like inside? The neighbors won't be able to sleep for a month."

It was too late. After their bags were full, all three kids charged into the bowels of the store, intent on seeing what else they could drag behind them to the cash register. By the time we made it up to the woman at the front, I'd adopted toothpaste, a new set of measuring cups, candy, two sticks of beef jerky, one plastic basket for socks, a six foot paper mummy, seventeen pumpkins, a bat with both wings, sippy cups shaped like cats, and some taffy that mysteriously tasted like soap.

"That'll be eighteen dollars."

"That's it?" Shocked, I took out my card. We'd picked up a lot of crap, but I'd forgotten it was cheap crap, and that felt good.

The lady smiled and handed me the receipt. "Good luck gettin' that baby out. You look ready."

I nodded. "I'm more ready to have this baby than find places for all these pumpkins. Where does one strategically place seventeen, paper gourds?"

"Happy Halloween."

I waved. "Happy Hallowon."


Later that day, Kellerman house was thoroughly decorated for the holiday. Bring your bags and your costumes, because we're giving away all the candy around here. And, if you're lucky, I may even send you away with some complementary, cardboard gourds.


Until Next Time, Readers!

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