Adventures in Attachment Parenting: Traditions Old and New by Allison Silver
One of my favorite memories of my childhood always centers around Halloween. I grew up in the east mountains of Albuquerque and since we lived in a semi rural area we used to go to my grandparent’s house in Albuquerque every year on Halloween to go trick or treating. My grandparent’s lived in a wonderful neighborhood that really got into the Halloween spirit. Most of the houses participated and there was always that one house that was deemed the “scary” house that we would stand in front of and dare each other to go ring the bell! (One year we actually rang the bell and left my poor two year old sister sitting in the doorway because we all got scared and ran off!)
We always began the evening by arriving at my grandparent’s house and eating pizza for dinner. After dinner we would get ready to go trick or treating and my grandmother would don her pearls and high heels to take us trick or treating while my grandfather would stay at the house because the dogs were scared, but he loved to pass out candy. After we filled up our bags we would head back to the house where we would have cake! (That thought makes me laugh. Only my grandmother would give us kids cake after we just acquired gobs of candy!) We would then sit and watch The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown on TV while we sorted through our loot. It was so much fun and it was a tradition in our family that I looked forward to each and every year. We even had friends and neighbors join us most years!
Now that I have a child I want her to have wonderful memories too. This year I wasn’t sure what we would do for Halloween. Since we live in a mountain community I talked a friend of mine, who lives in more of a neighborhood setting, into hosting a trick or treat party at her house. After we asked her to host a trick or treating party, we found out that the Waldorf school where we have been attending a weekly parent/tot class hosts a Pumpkin Path on Halloween Night. So we signed up. I was so excited that we had several activities to do on Halloween! We would start the evening by doing The Pumpkin Path and finish by going trick or treating with some friends!
My husband and I did not know what to expect in regards to The Pumpkin Path and we were both pleasantly surprised. It was basically a story that we were led through by an angel guide with several different stops where the actors told their part of the story and passed out gifts to the children. The entire path was lined with jack o’lanterns. The theme of this years story was that the king and queen were hosting a party for their sixteen year old twins but the venue had been changed so we had to go to each area in the village and let everyone know that the venue had been changed for the party. The villagers then thanked us by giving us small gifts. The pumpkin path ended at the twins birthday party. It was beautiful and very well done and our daughter loved it. She kept saying afterwards, “I saw queen.”
The Pumpkin Path took us a bit longer then we anticipated so we ended up being a little late to my friend’s home but we managed to get there and went trick or treating as a group. My friend, Kirsten, did a wonderful job hosting and made lots of fun treats for us to snack on, but I was a bit disappointed with the lack of participation in her neighborhood. The kids had a fine time but it just seemed like many of the homes were dark and the few that did participate had a few decorations scattered about. It made me wonder, “Where has the Halloween Spirit gone that I remember?” Or perhaps this is the norm and the Halloween that I have memories of was a complete anomaly? After we returned home my husband and I both agreed that although trick or treating was fun we all really enjoyed The Pumpkin Path. Perhaps this is the start of a new tradition for our family? Maybe next Halloween we will do The Pumpkin Path followed by pizza and cake!