I took the day off work today in what's becoming an annual tradition: Halloween parades. How could I not attend the costume displays and events? And this time, I had reinforcements: Laura and Ryan!
This year, the boys were in the same costume parade, since last year, Julian's kindergarten parade was separate. You'd think this would simplify things, but in fact, it made it harder to watch either of them, and I kept losing track of them during the parade. Still, it was so much fun watching what I could of each of them.
Gabriel and Parth were Luke Skywalker and Obi-wan Kenobi, respectively.
Julian is Anakin Skywalker. (Same costume, different color, shhh.)
The whole school gets into this! I'm amazed that Halloween is such a big deal among kids whose parents, most of them anyway, didn't grow up with a Halloween tradition. I guess it's a really fun tradition to join. As Laura astutely pointed out, who doesn't like costumes?
In Gabriel's class afterward.
I chatted briefly with his teacher and learned that he gets so tired in the afternoons that he even falls asleep on the floor. She has to remind him to eat his snack, or eat anything -- today his lunch came home untouched. Mr. Low-Energy. What's up with that?!
We went home for a while before moving on to Katrina's class performance. How cute is this, a group of preschoolers singing these Halloween songs. It struck me how much smaller this group looked than last year's though. Katrina participated happily this time, but still wouldn't sing.
Then we "paraded" to a nearby pumpkin patch,
I left Katrina at the pumpkin patch (really just a bunch of jumphouses) with Laura and Ryan and picked up the boys. There, a CDC staffer told me that Gabriel had refused to leave the building during a fire drill, and then was defiant and resistant when they implemented consequences. They even ended up calling me (couldn't reach) and Dave about it.
I am fit to be tied -- what I am I to do about this?! Dave is out of town for the weekend, Laura and Ryan are here, and we plan to make it a fun relaxed totally decadent weekend of movie-watching, eating and Halloween-ing. Something has to be taken away for that behavior -- but that ruins it for everyone else. On the surface it seems clear he shouldn't be allowed to watch any movies at all this weekend, but that means a tremendous and unpleasant struggle for me. Giving this kid consequences means seriously negative repercussions for everyone around him, and it's never clear that those consequences do much more than make life miserable for everyone else. Not that they shouldn't be applied, but I'd rather at a time when there isn't such a hefty cost to me. And taking away a movie isn't enough to get the message across -- even if it is a Star Wars movie. Hmm, on the other hand...
Quelling irritation, I took the boys back to the pumpkin patch, where they joined their sister in jumphouses and on inflatable slides for an hour. Pumpkin patches have little to do with pumpkins anymore. We didn't buy any pumpkins.
Late to bed, everyone tired, but a fun costume day. I could do without the weight of wondering how to get across to my oldest son that he has to follow the rules, and do so respectfully. Something has to change, and big.