Give me a three day bellyache

Rex gets in the car yesterday afternoon and says, “Mommy, this is my new invisible friend, Wilbur! Say hi, Mommy. Mommy? What can Wilbur be for Halloween?”

Considering that it was 5:30 and we had yet to assemble our costumes or even arrive at the house, the last person I was worrying about was Wilbur the Invisible Boy. “He can be an invisible man,” I said.

“That’s great, Mommy! Wilbur loves to be the Invisible Man!”

Halloween might be an American holiday, but the Germans sure seem to like our style.

We decided to throw caution to the ghouls last night and take our chances trick or treating. We have about 50 american families in our village alone, you can’t tell me we’re the only ones with costumes.

One thing I have failed to learn repeatedly is that you should never, ever let your kids play with their costumes before the big night. Harrison opened his Harry Potter accessory kit last Wednesday. By Friday he had misplaced both the wand and the glasses, and there wasn’t enough magic left in the packaging to bring them back. Take away his specs and Harry Potter is just a muggle with a wand.

This meant that his costumes were both created (we had a church party on Friday and trick-or-treating on Monday) on the fly. I was extremely ill on Friday (thank you, Ashley darling for saving my skin) and roused just long enough to cut up a pair of jeans, a long sleeved shirt and a coon skin cap (hello chest hair). Add some face paint, safety pins and fangs and we had one fierce little werewolf on our hands in about nine minutes flat. Last night he had to settle for a ghoul with a cape, since, obviously, he lost half his werewolf costume into the black hole hiding under his bed.

I was amazed and surprised to find that there were loads of Germans giving away candy last night. We passed several neighborhood bon fires, filled with free flowing vodka and candy for the kiddies. What I didn’t see were many American kids. The German kids around here have really glommed onto our traditions, they were all over the place.

My kids had full bags by about the eighth house. “Mommy,” Rex said, “I’m done trick-or-treatin’. I want to go home now.” It had been approximately eleven minutes.

“Well honey, we’ve got at least one more street to do then–”

“No Mommy! I don’t want any more candy! I have enough candy, all right? It’s time to go home, Halloween is done now.”

My Rex. First kid in the history of Halloween to put a cap on the candy count. He actually stood five feet behind the other kids and refused candy at the last half dozen houses we visited. I think the kid is pretty safe from gluttony.


  1. All the American kids went on base to trick or treat. That is THE MOST FUN trick or treating EVER. YOu haven’t celebrated Halloween until you’ve done it at Ramstein.

  2. Wonder of wonders, my Eric (5) also decided to stop trick-or-treating early. He was tired, he said. When I asked if he wanted more candy, he opened his bad and said, “I’ve got a TON of candy! I don’t need anymore!” So I carted him and Aubrey home. Even as we passed houses we hadn’t been to, he did want to get anymore.

    I can’t figure out if I’ve done something right or something wrong in raising him.

  3. My oldest gave up trick or treating for good at the ripe old age of 8. Never went again. On the other hand, my 21-year old texted me last night from college, announcing they had just FINISHED trick or treating, and were now headed to a party – their fourth or fifth of the season, and the second one last night. Jacob, my 16-year old, was spreading spider webs and scattering fake cockroaches all over the porch right up to a few minutes before the first arrival. It seems that Cori and I are the only ones who could take or leave the holiday.

  4. Our little one put an end to trick-or-treating when his pumpking bucket was about 1/3 full. He was completely thrilled to walk around the neighborhood and study what everyone had done with their jack-o-lanterns, though. Seriously. The man stood on people’s porches for a good three minutes admiring their pumpkin work before he’d ring a doorbell.

  5. It must be the age. Last year when my son was 5, he wanted to quit trick or treating after just a few streets because he thought his bag was too heavy. We were on the opposite side of the neighborhood from our house, so I thought that on our way home we should visit the houses on the other side of the street. He didn’t like this idea, but had no choice because his sister still wanted more candy. He was the grumpiest Oompa Loompa you’ve ever seen.
    I’ve found the best way to avoid losing costume pieces is to not actually finish making the costume until right before they go trick or treating.
    Did the invisible man manage to keep track of his costume? 😉

  6. ha ha…Rex, classic. A young man of self-assuredness and control.
    Vodka and candy….that’s pretty funny,.
    It seems like there is a really nice “network” of American friends, church, and community where you now live.
    Do you feel happy and comfortable, and secure??
    Gosh, I have lived here for 2 years now, and it. does. not. feel like home yet.

    happy candy eating…..I like the almond joys. Do they give out the same kind of candies in Germany.