From the opening of this month's issue of Wonderwise.
Hello Wonderers and Happy November!
Well, this last week began the season... the season of jumping from holiday to holiday. Between Halloween, Dia de Los Muertos, a few family birthdays, the Harvest, Thanksgiving, Winter Solstice, Christmas and New Year celebrations we usually take part in, things are certainly picking up speed around here. Around Valentine's Day, we usually stop and breathe. But this year, we are reminding ourselves to slow it all down.
We spent the week at the sewing machine (Zeal wanting to make his own costume). It was a costume I could have whipped out in a few minutes, but he chose to sit and sew it himself so instead it was a few day process; likewise with the papier-mache mask he made (that took 5 days for him to complete). And as we stood in the kitchen roasting our pumpkin the slow way for a few satisfying pumpkin bars, we talked and laughed and he even commented on how cool it was that we were doing it the SLOW way. [I'll certainly blog about it this week, so check out thinkingoutsidetherecipe.blogspot.com and wondershop.blogspot.com if you are interested in seeing more of the process.]
But then, the night of Halloween came and the chocolate buzz took over our heavily trick-or-treated neighborhood. We easily saw over a hundred costumed characters and creatures within the first few hours. When it was time to head out ourselves, we gathered the troops and began the journey. Zeal decided he would Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF, and along with thousands of other kids nationwide, he would ask each house to give some spare change to help kids in other parts of the world get the things they need to grow and survive (water, nutrition, medical and school supplies). But doing so meant that he (and his other friend who was taking part, as well) were slowing the others down. It took time for people to dig for that silver. So, caught in the frenzy, the others ran on ahead and these two little ones took their time with each house. They were so proud and faithful to the cause. Some people gave bills. Some gave pennies. And with each bit of giving, little and big hearts did a bit of swelling.
The kids ended up with less traditional Halloween loot than their counterparts (who we met up with again later), but they didn't seem to notice or care. In the end it didn't matter at all since Zeal ended up leaving his candy out for "The Halloween Goblin" who did a nice exchange for the candy with a few new lego pieces (the favorite building tool of late). Works out for me since you know how pregnant mamas just love a bit of chocolate now and again. And I especially love that some of our neighbors even chose to give organic! :)
But he still has that little UNICEF box sitting in a place of honor, waiting to be sent in "for the kids". The trophy of the evening. And the morning here is quiet and slow, the way it should be. And this is only one little way that kids are learning the importance of giving to others and helping people in need.
So here, in this issue of Wonderwise, have yourself a merry beginning to this season of giving with:
-Volunteering with Children from Kelly Palmatier at CompassionateKids.com
-Artists Helping Children - Ways to Give Back
-Consuming Kids documentary
-Bread of the Dead
So just for fun, here we are on Halloween night...
Two characters taken from Greek mythology, the latest source of creative fun around our house...
Zeal, in his mostly self-made costume, The Minotaur, and my very pregnant self as the Goose that Laid the Golden Egg.