Halloween was a success. Well, an <em>A-</em> I suppose. Mostly good with a few of the standard issues that are known to plague the holiday.

Our girls went as Dorothy (M.), the Wicked Witch of the West (C.), and the Cowardly Lion (L.). “Big fans of the Wizard of Oz?” you ask. No. In fact, our girls have never seen the movie, although we’ve read part of the original book. Two of M.’s classmates announced they were going to be Dorothy about a month ago*, and she quickly hopped on the bandwagon. S. figured this might be the last year we can control how they all dress, so the two younger sisters got Wizard of Oz costumes as well.

(One of those girls dressed as St. Dorothy for All Saints Day Friday. Obsess much?)

We did a dry run Friday so we could go to the grandparents’ house and show off the costumes there. That ended up being a good call, but more on that in a moment. Everyone was happy and excited to be in their costumes. M. didn’t ever want to take hers off again. We told her after Saturday night, she could sleep in it all she wanted.

Saturday the girls were bouncing off the walls all day. M. and C. didn’t talk about trick or treating all day, but you could tell they were wound up because of what was to come. S. was working so they were driving me crazy.

When it came time to get dressed, it was the standard herding cats routine. M. and C. couldn’t calm down and would race throughout the house. L., who refused every opportunity to nap all day, was suddenly rubbing her eyes and whining. When S. was ready to braid M.’s hair, she refused to go into the bathroom. C. refused to have her face painted, so the pictures we took Friday will serve as our official pics, I suppose.

We finally got everyone in their gear and headed out. Within five minutes C. was complaining about being cold. It was a bit brisk, but I think she was just stressing about having to deal with strangers and wanted to get home and dig into her candy. S. ended up taking her and L. home a few houses early.

That left M. and I, and she got all kinds of raves from the people at the remaining houses we visited. Unlike C., she was digging the attention. We generally only go to a handful of houses, and after we had hit all the usuals, she said, “Dad, we could go to a couple more houses.” What an idea! I agreed, but before we could cross the street, she decided she was cold and wanted to go home, too.

Once we got home, ate some dinner, and they checked out their treats, both girls were very happy. L.’s mood improved greatly once we took her costume off. Like the past couple years, M. and C. were really into handing out candy. They even went out on the front porch with their aunt for about 30 minutes and waited for kids to come by. So much for being cold.

We probably had the fewest trick or treaters we’ve ever had. I think part of it was the cold, this was probably the coolest Halloween since we’ve lived here, and a neighborhood party that preceded trick or treating that may have wiped some kids out. Also, not knowing a lot of people in the neighborhood and living in a cul-de-sac always keeps the numbers down. When M. was handing out candy, she told a group of pre-teen girls that they could take four or five pieces. One of the girls was shocked by that, and my sister-in-law said that not many kids had visited. The girl looked at her friends and said, “I TOLD you there would be more candy back here!” So I guess we pleased a few people.

A good holiday, once we got past the afternoon and into the evening activities. I’m wondering if next year M. will want to branch out and visit more homes, weather permitting, and if C. will be comfortable enough around strangers to want to tag along. And I also wonder what M. will be choosing for her costume then. I doubt we’ll have much input on the concept.

One last note. I had no idea this is the 70th anniversary of the Wizard of Oz until I saw a display at Barnes and Noble in Kansas City last week. Every place we went on the Plaza seemed to have Wizard of Oz displays or trinkets for sale. M. was amazed by them. She kept asking why there were so many Dorothys in Kansas City.* I reminded her that Dorothy was from Kansas. “Oh yeah!” she would laugh.

(The girls club she and her friends put together last Friday at the N’s featured two other preschoolers who were dressing as Dorothy this weekend. What’s the deal with girls that age and Dorothy? Is it just the shoes?)

And now we get to start working on the Thanksgiving menu and Christmas lists.