Halloween hand me down & run down

Remember when I only had one child?

Yeah, those were the days.

Just joking Carter.

Actually, the days before any kids were really the days (just joking Hunter).  I got SO MUCH accomplished and I was SO well rested.

When I only had one, I was able to still accomplish quite a lot.  Now, one of them is always awake or crying or pooping (or pooping and crying at the same time)- which makes it nearly impossible for me to get much of anything accomplished besides keeping us all alive, fed and clean (relatively speaking- I haven't showered in 2 days).

So, when Halloween started approaching I literally had no idea what I was going to do for the boys, and no idea when I was going to have time to not only come up with an amazing costume idea but then create said costume.

To be honest, I figured if I didn't come up with anything good I would just throw both the boys in all UW gear and call them Husky fans.

This year, unlike the last year, I didn't get to pick out Hunter's costume.

He is a little opinionated dude.

Apparently 2 year olds come with opinions.

He is particular about absolutely everything in his life; what he wears, what pacifier he sleeps with and even what helmet he wears when he plays (he has a lot to chose from).

So, I knew that I was not going to have a choice in this.

Also, if you have ever met a toddler, they change their minds every 30 seconds, so last minute Halloween costumes are actually the smart move.

We happened to be shopping at whole foods a few weeks ago when we came upon a small display of Melissa & Doug costumes.  Hunter spotted the fireman costume from across the aisle and was bound and determined to make me stop and look at it.

The costume is for 3-6 year olds- and Hunter doesn't even fit clothes for 2 year olds.

When I told him it would be way too big on him, he said "maybe take it home." I told him no and pried him away from the outfit to continue shopping.

After we made it through a few more aisles I started thinking I was being silly- why not let him get it?

I didn't have any other ideas for Halloween, he was IN LOVE with the costume and if it was a bit too big, I could always take it in with a needle and thread (that count as homemade right?).

So, I took him back to the costume aisle and let him pick out what he wanted.

I have never seen him so excited.

We had to get fully dressed in the costume before leaving the parking lot.

Let me tell you, riding in a car seat with a fireman's helmet is rather tough.

He was so excited about it, we had to drive to my mom's work and show her too.

He has not stopped wearing that costume for 2 weeks.

I do feel a small twinge of guilt that I didn't make a homemade costume for him, but that passed pretty quick when I realized that I didn't have to put out any effort and Hunter was joyously happy.  Win-win.

So, when my mom asked what Carter was going to be for Halloween, I started to feel guilty.  I needed to come up with something for the little guy.

Somehow I came up with a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle.

Why?  I have no idea, but I became obsessed with the idea of a tiny TMNT.

I realized I already had a good base for the costume- the same green outfit I used as a base for Hunter's Oscar the Grouch costume when he was only 3.5 weeks old.          

I already had it pulled out since I had just got the 0-6 month baby clothes out of the attic.

Luckily, I had created the original costume with hot glue, so I ripped off the eyes, eyebrows and mouth and started again with a blank slate.

Poor Carter doesn't get anything new.  He gets nothing but hand me downs- but I was determined to create something new for him out of his brother's old costume.

I picked up a few pieces of craft felt for $0.25 per sheet and created a little TMNT costume that I am just in love with.

The shell may be my favorite part.

I didn't have a pattern, I just googled images of TMNT and TMNT costumes and then winged it- which is pretty much how I roll all the time... nothing is planned, I just hope it works.

This time, I feel like I pulled it off pretty well...and the only down side was burning the crap out of my hand with the hot glue gun (I am my mother's daughter).

I can't really explain my methods besides laying out the green outfit and then eyeballing the sizing for the front & back.  The turtle shell was just trial and error of cutting shapes and gluing them on until it looked like a shell.

Since Carter is older and already 11 pounds, he filled the green outfit out a lot better than Hunter did.

He is not a huge fan of tummy time- but he was doing his best turtle impression here. 

Of course, I never got a picture of the two boys in their costumes on Halloween.  Mostly because Hunter doesn't sit still for longer than 3 seconds and if I ask him to sit next to Carter, he usually rolls on him or gives him a "big hug" that results in me having to physically remove him.

So, when I laid Carter on the floor, Hunter jumped in the picture with yogurt running down his chin- apparently laying on the dog-hair-covered floor is fun.  

He had dressed up as a "Mariners player" that morning, so I'll call this their Halloween picture.

Hunter is actually the king of costume changes this year.  He was a Mariner that morning, and even had to take his bat and balls to the gym with us.

Then, he put on his Fireman outfit for just long enough to do his very first trick or treat on QA Ave.

But when we arrived at my parent's house, he was done with the Fireman and had moved on to a Husky/Seahawk football player.

Carter rocked his one costume all night...not that he had much choice.

Halloween was fun and chaotic, and just the right amount of insanity mixed with exhaustion.

This was the first year of trick or treating for Hunter and he is still unsure about it. We are a bit unsure as well- since Halloween is tricky for a kid with food allergies.  

Since Hunter is allergic to all dairy and egg, most Halloween candy is unsafe for him to eat.  

Also, I have never given him candy before. He's two- he has plenty of time to become addicted to Sour Patch Kids like his mom.

So, taking him trick or treating is a bit scary.  I don't want him to accidentally eat something he shouldn't, but I also don't want him to miss out on the fun of childhood trick or treating.

This year, it was easy to control since I was holding his hand the whole time.  We only did the businesses on QA Ave (rather than the neighborhood), and I steered him to the stores that were giving away toys, stickers and toothbrushes. 

This year we skipped going door-to-door and instead simply hit up some good friends who are cognizant of his allergies and then headed to the grandparents where he got toys & allergy-friendly treats. 

Food allergies are no joke- and for many families they require missing out on fun activities due to their severity.  As Hunter gets older and starts to want to participate more in the trick-or-treating tradition, I plan to take small toys or approved treats to all our neighbors houses for them to give to Hunter.  

I'm also going to tell them about the Teal Pumpkin Project- which is a new campaign to encourage people to give out alternatives to food/candy. 

If you have allergey-friendly alternatives, you simply paint a pumpkin teal and put it on your porch.  You can also register your house on the map they have to let families know it's safe to trick-or-treat at your house. 

I hope in the next few years everyone will know about it and we will see plenty of teal pumpkins and houses with allergy-friendly items to give to trick or treaters.

Until then, I am going to have to take one for the team and eat all of his candy- just to be safe.

Bummer (for my waistline).