The week leading up to Halloween is always filled with excitement. This year there was just a little bit more excitement than usual because not only did Halloween fall on a Friday it also happened to be a Friday that the kids had off of school. AND, this was also the first year that we told Joey that he could trick or treat with friends and have them sleep over. It was exciting, people!
Then Monday happened. Tommy came home from school achy and cold. He muscled through his homework and then asked to go to bed. That's when I knew he was really sick. Tommy NEVER wants to go to bed. He took a little nap, sat in a hot bath, and then tried to eat some oatmeal. I gave him Tylenol and, thankfully, he finally started to feel better.
Ben had his last football game of the season that same night and Tommy sat in the car trying to take it easy. It was difficult for him because it was a balmy 60 degrees and he wanted to be out tossing the football and climbing in the trees with everyone else. Still I insisted that he rest.
After the football game I rushed off to choir and Todd took the kids home and got them into bed. I was hopeful all would be well, but on Tuesday morning Tommy woke up feeling much worse. He had a sore throat, aches, hot/cold flashes, headache and stomach ache. Needless to say, Tommy stayed home from school. That same day Ben and Joey came home from school saying that they had sore throats too.
Wednesday morning Tommy felt well enough to go to school. Ben and Joey didn't feel so great but wanted to muscle through anyway since it was an early day (out by 2:15). When they came home from school that day all three boys were spent. They did indeed muscle through and came home feeling exhausted and achy. Luckily, they didn't have much homework (unusual for them) and we had a full evening of sitting around, taking baths, and trying to rest up and relax.
Thursday morning everyone seemed to be feeling a bit better, save for a rogue sore throat or headache, and they all went off to school.
At 1:00 we got a phone call from school that Ben wasn't feeling good and had a temperature of 103. Ben was promptly picked up from school and brought home to be properly babied. Poor little pickle. He was miserable. And medicine didn't seem to help. He spent most of the day in his bed trying to sleep. By that evening Grace had begun to feel achy and sick too. It looked like we weren't going to be having such a Happy Halloween.
Here it was Thursday evening, we had two sick kiddos, and we just remembered that we hadn't carved any pumpkins yet. Joey and Tommy begged to carve their own pumpkins all by themselves for the very first time this year, and since Todd and I were busy comforting Ben and Grace they got their wish. As Joey and Tommy set about their work Grace got so excited by the pumpkins she forgot about being sick. Too bad it didn't work that way for Ben. He was so sad he couldn't join in on the fun. Todd tried to cheer him up by playing video games on his phone but Ben could only do it for a few minutes before he got a sick stomach.
I knew in the back of his mind Ben was really worried about not being able to go trick or treating the next day. I could tell that weighed heavily on his mind. I tried to assure him that he could still get better overnight, that all he needed was a good night's sleep, but he didn't seem convinced.
He may have been right. Ben came into my room in the middle of the night (it was the 6th straight night one of the kids came into our room in the middle of the night- ugh) to tell me he was so sick. I tried to offer him some medicine but he just didn't want it. He said his stomach hurt and he was so thirsty he was dreaming he was drinking Lake Michigan. I took Ben downstairs to the living room couch and got him to drink water. Then he drank some more. And after that a little more. Soon he started to feel better. Ben fell asleep on the couch with me next to him. In the morning, on Halloween, Ben was asking for food.
Halloween afternoon I had all the kids lie down and sleep. Everyone had been so sleep deprived with all the late night visits to my room and the ick running around the house that I figured a little bit of extra sleep might give them the strength they needed. Luckily, this time, I was right.
All the kids woke from their naps feeling healthy and strong. Thankfully. Because they would need all the strength they could manage. All week the weather had been a nice 50-60 degrees and sunny. On Halloween the weather was 36 degrees with 50 mph winds. It was crazy!
Because of the hideous weather we scrapped all of our original costume ideas an wracked out brains for warm costume ideas. The boys all opted for either a soldier or a hunter and Grace went as a bumblebee. The kids were so bundled they didn't even feel the cold.
I wondered if Joey would plan it out and be responsible enough to meet us when he promised but as we pulled up to our meeting spot we saw Joey and his friend (also named Joe) sitting on the grass in front of our old house. Not only did it make me melancholy to see Joey sitting in our old front yard but it made me so proud that he kept his word and got there early so he wouldn't keep us waiting.
Grace had had enough trick or treating so we left Tommy and Ben off with the Joes and told them to be careful, stay together, mind their manners. I was a nervous wreck as I drove away from my boys. I went trick or treating by myself (well, with a friend) at a very young age but it is a whole different story when it is my own kids. HA! I'm not ashamed to admit that 30 or 40 minutes later I hopped back in the car, found the boys (they told me the route they would be taking to get back home) and asked them how they were feeling and if they wanted a ride back. They were having so much fun together that they wanted to keep walking back to the house even though their buckets were so full they weren't trick or treating anymore.
When they got home there was a roaring fire, pizza, and apple cider waiting for them. It really turned out to be a fun evening. The kids felt good, they had a blast, and they got home safely. All was well.
There was only one little hitch in the whole night, and it still irks me to think of it. Not even a half an hour into trick or treating a woman handed out candy to my kids and said, "Aren't you a little old to be trick or treating?" What??? My kids were too confused to even answer. I stepped up and said, "Well, they are dressed in costume, they are being polite, and they are having fun. You're never too old to trick or treat. Let's let them be kids as long as possible, right?" She didn't answer me. She just stared at me. I added, "It is good innocent fun. Let's let them be young and have fun." And she just stared at me. I stared back and said again, "Right?" She continued to stare. I was FUMING. So angry. If I was thinking properly I would have added, "They are 5, 7, 9, and 11!!!!! What age to you deem to be an appropriate trick or treating age???" AHHH!!!! It honestly made me so angry. I just don't understand people like that. People complain about kids growing up too quickly these days, the innocence of youth being gone, and then when kids want to be kids they get this kind of response. I just don't get it. And my kids aren't even teenagers yet! So maddening. I wish people like that just didn't hand out candy. I tried not to let it ruin my night because the kids didn't seem bothered by it, but it sure bugged me. Put a real damper on my evening. Dopey lady.
Anyway, other than dopey lady it was a very fun Halloween night.
The next night Todd and I had a costume/vampire party to go to. It has been a long time since I had a Halloween party to go to and being the Halloween fan that I am I was excited to go. It was so much fun!
How was your Halloween?