No More Corrugated Boxes, Mom!

I loved making Halloween costumes for my kids--- loved, as in past tense. My costume-making days have been declared over and done with. Masana and Mack have grown tired of my proclivity to use corrugated boxes as the primary costume material and have left me to twiddle my thumbs in the month of October.

Masana's epiphany about cardboard costumes came in kindergarten. In the picture to the right, she is Lady the magical train from Thomas and Friends. Masana discovered (at the tender age of 5) that homemade cardboard costumes were not as compelling as, let's say, a shiny store-bought princess outfit. She wore Lady the cardboard-costume-my-cheapo-mother-made with an embarrassed expression during the school parade and quickly took it off once she reached the safety of her classroom.

In the ensuing Halloweens, Masana has been a frog, a cat, and a tree---all costumes that did NOT involve a corrugated box. Sadly, she will not dress up this year because, according to her posse of 5th graders, she is "too old to go trick or treating." I don't know how any kid can pass up free candy, but Masana will not be carousing the streets this evening. And I guess I'll have to go with it.

Mack, on the other hand, envied Masana's Lady costume and couldn't wait until Halloween to employ my skills for his benefit. For his 4th birthday in the spring of 2007, he asked for a car race straight out of the movie Cars. I made sixteen (16!) car costumes. Each child took a car costume home as a party favor, which made Mack a little sad. He was hoping we would keep all sixteen (16!) cars in the backyard.

After that party, I was ready to make another locomotive. Trains? Been there. Cars? Done that.

A few months after his birthday, Mack asked me to make a tugboat costume for Halloween. I was ecstatic. A boat! How could I refuse?

Mack the Tugboat marched in his school parade. He marched in the village parade. He got interviewed by middle school kids writing a paper on Halloween costumes.

"Where did you get the idea to be a tugboat, kid?"

"Did you help your mom make your costume?"

"Is that thing heavy?"

"Can I try it on?"

Mack loved it.

The following year Mack wanted to be a rocket. So with a corrugated box, two empty paper towel rolls, foil, and two plastic bags we transformed him into "Weapons of MACK Destruction."

I think he simply wanted an excuse to run around like a maniac, but he loved that costume. It stayed in our play room for another year where his friends would admire it and even try it on for kicks.

Then came the year everyone wanted to be a vampire, and I couldn't make a vampire costume out of a corrugated box. And last year Mack wanted to be Brian Wilson of the San Francisco Giants. This year he's a football referee. I offered to make him a football stadium that he could wear over his referee outfit, but he declined.

Oh, well. It was good while it lasted.