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Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The Great Costume Hunt

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photo found at comicsninja.com

Halloween costumes have been a recent hot topic at our house in the 5-and-under crowd. My 3-year-old's little witch costume was easily acquired, but my 5-year-old, Hubba, has consistently insisted on being Boba Fett from Star Wars "because he has a jet pack and carries two guns." For two weeks I have searched various stores and internet sites in the hope of finding a child-sized Boba Fett costume at a reasonable cost - to no avail.

Yesterday I discovered that a local "Bullseye" store (as Hubba tends to call it) carried the child-sized costumes. I loaded up a few of the crew and off we went to make all of Hubba's Halloween dreams come true.

They were out of his size.

"Hubba," I told him, "these are all too big. What should we do?"

Without blinking an eye he said, "Oh, well. I guess I'll be Darth Vader."

Not a minute later he had changed it to a pirate, then a skeleton, then a firefighter, based on what costume happened to come into his line of vision.

Frustrated by his fickle ways, I stated that he might as well just wear the same firefighter costume that I made for him last year.

"Okay." He answered. "Let's go, then."

I was shocked by his indifference. So much time would have been saved if we had just reached this conclusion to start with! However, I quickly realized that the fault was mine. Despite the fact that I have fond memories of wearing the same cheap, plastic WitchiePoo costume over and over for years as a child, it never even crossed my mind to have Hubba wear a repeat costume from the previous year. Why?

I think that, as adults, we tend to make things much bigger than they are in a child's mind. He wants to be Boba Fett? Well, then - I will search to all ends of the earth until his request is granted! And then when I find the costume in a crumpled heap in the back of his closet a couple of days later, why am I surprised? He is five years old. He is living in the moment.

I wonder sometimes if it is easier to make children happy than we think. I wonder if we, the adults, are the ones who are guilty of over-stimulating their brains with our own ideas of what they should want. (Don't even get me started on Christmas.)

We got home, dug out the old costume, and Hubba is perfectly content to be a firefighter again. Lesson learned.

Granted, I did hear him ask his older brother if firefighters ever wear jetpacks or carry guns. So maybe he'll be a gun-wielding fireman.

I'm okay with that.

10 comments:

cari said...

Very well put. Things can get way out of control and many times we have no one else to blame except ourselves. (At least that's the case for me!) :)

Kalei's Best Friend said...

Well, u have a unique child... Mine would of had their heart set on the costume they dreamed up... I have to agree I would search high and low for what they wanted.. And u r right, if they didn't get their heart's desire at Xmas, they seemed to be fine w/it..

Linn said...

Fabulous post and I completely agree. It is often me that causes all the drama with their requests. They seldom care that much.

Rebecca said...

Ok, this post got me doing some self-evaluation. My conclusion: I'm a bit selfish when it comes to costuming my kids for Halloween. Creating/finding/gathering the perfect costumes is probably more fun for me than it is for my kids to wear the final product. I had a mother who made me a spectacular costume every year, and I loved them all! If I'm spoiling my kids, and/or myself, I'm ok with that.

Rachel said...

Big water and oxygen tanks! They carry those! And they wear cool scary masks.

I used to make The Native's costumes. I'd spent weeks behind the sewing machine making costumes that literally cost me a fortune both time and money. Now, I still try to help The Native's with what they want to wear but it is way more simpler and the younger ones who don't care....... wear the hand me downs. I got too tired. Which is a good thing.

Richard & Natalie said...

I think we do it because we want our kids to have it better than we did sorting through the old box of hand me downs. I learned this lesson last year when my 1 and only girl wanted nothing to do with all the girly costumes I placed in front of her and I was willing to plunk down a good amount of change for. She wanted to be the gorilla costume we had at home. So I reluctantly said what the heck and she happened to be a darn cute gorilla.

Mom not Mum (Sandy) said...

Oh I so know the feeling but I also remember a year that my daughter wanted to be a red ninja. Easy peasy as it was in the dress up box from one of the boys halloween costumes a few years earlier. She was the cutest little girl ninja there ever was. I'm hoping to recycle a bit this year - she might wear a butterfly costume I wore one year - I'll let you know if it fits.

Lori said...

You are so right, Gerb. I have gotten to where I let/make the kids put together their own costumes from scrap clothes and doodads that we have around the house. Autumn was a punk rocker last year, with an ensemble inspired by a pair of sparkly silver jeans we happened upon at a consignment shop.

I think kids are pretty happy if they just look different from their usual selves.

Gerb said...

Cari- Totally the case for me as well! I'm definitely toning it down a bit this year.

KBF- Unique is definitely a good adjective when it comes to describing my kids. ;)

Linn- Funny thing is, Hubba has changed it again since this post. Now that he's gone through the costume box he's wavering between knight and ninja.

Bec- It is fun to put together fabulous costumes, isn't it? And I have to admit that I love seeing what you come up with.

Rachel- If he does decide to stick with the firefighter he's planning on carrying a big water gun.

Natalie- Isn't that the best when they are headstrong about the simplest solution?! Love it.

MnM- Red ninja, huh? My 11-year-old was a ninja last year and he created the entire costume himself. That was awesome.

Lori- Aren't we ALL happy to look a bit different from our usual selves sometimes? ;)

jacs said...

i made an AWESOME boba fett for jake out of a padded wrestler or strong man costume that i got for dirt cheap. painted it with spray paint in army green and black, made some jet packs out of old wrapping paper tubes and tossed a cape on there. (for future reference, jake has a boba fett mask that is way cool) but it was so unbelievably cool! i'm hoping that chase is finally big enough to wear it this year.

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