Halloween is my favourite annual celebration, combining dressing up with eating too many sweets, craft, sewing and face painting. In Australia though trick or treating can be pretty disheartening. We seem to too readily dismiss it as Americanisation but cheerfully embrace the coca cola version of Santa Claus. The worst experience we have had so far in Australia was when our oldest was two. We were living away from family and friends on a six month, which turned into an eighteen month, contract in the Blue Mountains and had been building everyone up to halloween, made or bought costumes and spent the preceding friday night at the Museum Halloween party. I think we may have been living in the most religious street in Glenbrook, filled with people who seemed very put out by our dressing up and celebrating a heathen holiday. One neighbour even slipped religious propaganda into my small child's basket. It was a cartoon so even if he was an early reader he could still appreciate the message of condemnation. I could just imagine what that weeks sermon must have been like when they passed around these tragic pamphlets for participants to hand out at Halloween, helping to open the eyes of the wicked trick or treating children to the error of their ways. The Annual Haunted Museum Halloween Party, from the spooky trail to the hidden entrance, to the 'Night of the Museum' inspired monkey and alligator handling when we got inside. This was a great night even though I had a piercing on my lip that was grossly infected and gave my wicked witch costume the added special effect of pussy, bulging sore lip and spooky red eye that not even latex can achieve.
This year we have opened our little heathens eyes to even more harmless Halloween fun. Pumpkin carving!