In the last few years, Halloween has taken on a significance unknown in my previous thirty-um, thirty-some-odd years. No longer a holiday marked mainly by passing out candy or possibly going to some grown up party, it’s a big day for my children to demonstrate their personalities through their costumes, and at midnight, it’s the kickoff to National Novel Writing Month.

The costume search this year was harder than ever. Elizabeth, as usual, wanted to be some form of web-girls-as-princess-buttercup.jpgdecadent feminine explosion in tulle and roses. Emily, though, really is more male-oriented in her interests (math, architecture, heroes.) But those costumes are too boy for her. Or, transversely, too girly (one look at Wonder Woman and she shouted, “No!”)

We searched on the Internet, viewing over 250 costumes via BuyCostumes.com and other online outlets. When we went through two complete sites with no luck, I turned to her and said, “Figure it out or you’re stuck being Hermione again.”

Both girls shouted, “No!” This upset me a little, as I had hand sewn under duress, a costume for Elizabeth that exactly matched Emily’s so that they might go to the Harry Potter Book 7 release parties as Gryffindor. I’d done it with the deal that Elizabeth would use it again at Halloween.

No dice.

After a lengthy discussion of movies they liked and characters they might portray, both simultaneously chose Buttercup from The Princess Bride.

An argument ensued, mainly composed of “I’m Buttercup! No, I’m Buttercup!”

I never dreamed Emily would pick a princess! And a useless one at that, falling in fear in the battle of the Rodents of Unusual Size when she should have clubbed the buggers with a stick. But that’s beside the point. I now had the opposite problem.

Eventually we came to an agreement: Emily would be the red-robed casual Buttercup; Elizabeth the resplendant white-gowned bride.

web-nano-midnight-write-dragons-lair1.jpgHalloween was not quite the same as last year: the usual crowd but less booze as we parents gabbed in driveways while the kids lumbered up to doorways. When the candy bags were too heavy to manage, we took them home and then as is tradition, I joined friends on Sixth Street for a walk-about before heading to Dragon’s Lair for the midnight kick off of NaNoWriMo.

I wrote 1200 words the first night from midnight until about 1 a.m. I’m about 3500 words in now, but more on the book later. I’m off to the Texas Renaissance Festival! (I just finished MY costume an hour ago!)

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