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Three-eyed two-horned flying blue chocolate phobia eater

Much like last year, Noah refused to wear a costume to school. "NO COSTUME," he shrieked at the merest suggestion of dressing up. "JUST NOAH."

At one point he said he wanted to be the house from UP -- purposely choosing the most terrifying cinematic experience of the past year, as he howled in fear and had to be removed from the theater pretty much every time the house appeared on screen, and he had nightmares about floating houses for weeks. THANKS FOR ALL THE WHIMSY, PIXAR.

Although he's since worked through that fear pretty well -- at his request, we took him to see it again at a second-run drafthouse theater just a few weeks ago, and he loved it -- I was skeptical about this costume request. And indeed, when we did obligingly attempt to thoroughly traumatize him with a trial run of cardboard-box-with-balloons-attached, he would have none of it.

So on Friday, the day of his school parties, I distracted him with a waffle and shoved his green Steve-from-Blue's-Clues shirt from last year over his head.


A few minutes later he contemplated a sleeve, and sensing that trickery was afoot, made me promise that the green shirt was NOT A COSTUME. NOT A COSTUME, MOMMY. JUST NOAH.

All of his teachers assured me (when I gave them a heads up on the whole "oh hey, my kid is terrified of Halloween costumes" thing) that this is a pretty normal thing, both for this age and especially for the Kids Like Noah set. Most four-year-olds are still trying to figure out the distinction between real and pretend, while Noah needs and depends on his routines and rituals more than most. He hates -- HATES -- anything out of the ordinary or anyone acting the slightest bit "different." (Last week one teacher had her hair straightened and Noah burst into tears at the sight of her, because her hair wasn't "wiggly" anymore.) Class parties, field trips -- these aren't fun, they're stressful, even scary. 

And so Jason and I, FINALLY, ON SATURDAY, LIKE OH MY GOD WE'RE MAYBE CATCHING ON A LITTLE BIT, decided that we would not push trick-or-treating just because it's "fun" and "he'll like it once he does it" and...I don't know. All the reasons we always stupidly drag Noah to things that we THINK are part of a nutritious balanced childhood.

We told him we could go trick-or-treating if he wanted to, but yeah, he needed to wear a costume. We showed him the options (all leftover rejects from last year) and pretty much left it at that. He seemed quite okay with the idea of skipping it all together.

Then our doorbell rang, and our first trick-or-treaters arrived. Within 30 seconds Noah bolted upstairs and came down with a costume in his hand.


He's a monster. He says RAWR and he scares you when he says RAWR. Just FYI.


A boy's gotta do what a boy's gotta do for candy, apparently. I asked him what he wants to be next year and he said "nothing! I don't! I won't!" and collapsed in a dramatic, exhausted slump, like OH GOD, AGAIN? This would be much easier if you people would just hand over the chocolate. I have no more patience for you and your weird Earth ways.


Ezra has no opinion on the matter, but was just vaguely passively happy to be there. He would like to point out that many houses explicitly gave Noah "candy for [his] baby brother" and yet he has not seen a single bite. Not cool, dude. NOTCOOL.



Ez=awesome as usual. And when did Noah turn into a big kid? He's looks older in every picture. Crazy magic school bus.

Jen L.

Glad he rallied and got himself some candy! Rawr! Ezra is a precious monkey.


The sight of Ezra in the monkey costume is monumentally adorable. And go Noah!

Charlie Reece

So glad that Noah got to do the trick-or-treat thing -- never underestimate the power of candy!

Laura and I are so happy that you guys seem to be doing well.

Tracy D

My 4 yo with some sensory issues was Steve from Blue's Clues this year.... it was great because it was NOT like a costume! Love the pics and love your boys...


re-re-re-delurking to let you know HOMYGAWD CUTEST KIDS EVAHHH.
Thank you, will go back to lurking now:)


Yay for Noah!

Poor little candiless Ez!

We got one bag of dried fruit (the real stuff, not "froot") and some animal crackers that we declared to be Peepers, and also gave her one mini Three Muskateers, which she thoroughly enjoyed!


Baaawwww. Her hair wasn't wiggly anymore.


I like how you let him make up his own mind. They are both adorable! :)


Hooray for Noah! And OMIGOD I could just eat Ezra up. NOMNOMNOM.

I like the idea of the House From UP as a costume. You are a clever clever family.


Go parents! Its so hard to let the kid set the pace, and I'm so impressed you did. And he had fun. Yeah!


Yeap. I'll pretty much do anything for candy too!


I had that same costume for Nathan when he was Ezra's age! Le sigh.

Sprite's Keeper

My kid seems to have a fear of costumes and masks and I seriously thought this year being her first time trick or treating (she'll be 3 soon) would be traumatic, but we went along with it anyway since we thought she would END UP enjoying it. And she did once she realized she was getting some sweets out of it. Although she did learn a valuable life lesson that home owners don't take requests for m&m's.


Your kids are UNBELIEVEABLY cute :)


My Halloween was terrible. We decided to go to the mall since it was cold. My 3 year old spent the whole time screaming. He literally fell to the ground screaming when someone put the candy in his bag. Other causes for screams? Someone calling him cute, another asked if he liked chocolate, you get the idea.... Every time someone put candy into my 11 month old daughter's bag, he screamed 'Throw it away! Is it gone? I don't want that!!!!' It was terrible, and embarrassing. I ended up bringing him home and trick-or-treating with the baby. She hasn't seen any of the candy, but at least I didn't have to explain to my son why his 'trick or treating' the night before ended with him having no candy.....

I'm glad you had a nice Halloween though...


Also, my son had the costume when he was Ezra's age. My nephew wore it this year. My daughter is so small, she'll probably fit it next year. And it's cute enough that I think it would work for a little girl too!


I just passed out from cuteness overload.


I cannot stop giggling at that picture of Ezra the monkey. Hilarious.


Dear Ezra, I love you. You're awesome. Noah, you are pretty fabulous too. I love you. And I also think these Earthlings are weirdos.

Katie Kat

OMG - you can TOTALLY see what Noah will look like as a teenager in that picture with the pumpkin! OH DEAR!!! So dang adorable and LOVE the story.


My 4 year old put it more eloquently than I ever could.

On Noah: "Yeah! I like him. He looks awesome!" "Hey mom, can I wear that costume for trick-or-treat?"

On Ezra: "That looks like a nice monkey baby. I like him."

Blue Satin Sashes

I feel for Noah, poor guy. The world is scary enough for him on a regular day, then throw Halloween in the mix... When I was his age it wasn't my own costume that was the problem, it was everyone else's costumes. The gorilla at the firehouse nearly did me in. The poor man even tried to take his fake gorilla head off to show me it was pretend and that just freaked me out even more. I think I was about the same age as Noah, maybe 4?


Noah is looking older and older! I can't believe how much that baby has grown up. :) And that picture of Ezra make my hand fly up to my mouth to cover the squeal that I'm sure was about to erupt. So cute.


My SIL and I spent all day on Halloween finishing my nephew's costume, which was SpongeBob. He's almost three, and is kind of starting to get the doorbell=candy thing. He loved the costume when it was on the floor. He ran in several times, pointed at it and screamed "SpongeBob!" excitedly. It was another story entirely when he figured out it had to go on him. We were desperately trying to just get him to wear it for a picture or to one house, but he was having none of it. As soon as it would touch his head he did that thing they do where they collapse like they are boneless. We finally got it on him for one picture, in which his face is clearly telling us to fuck off with our costume. He went as a kid in a yellow shirt and brown pants, obvs.

Shannon the SLP

So much awesomeness all around. LOVE the pics of the boys in costume. Ezra cracks me up. And hooray for wearing a costume! Amazing what the promise of candy can do!

Aunt Becky

I need the costume that Noah is wearing in my size. For every day use.


1 - love how excited Noah is and how great he looks as a blue monster

2 - that pic of Ezra made me laugh heartily out loud, at work. Amazing.

Kids dressed up as small animals. Gets me every time.


Wiggly!!! Too cute!


Yay, go Noah!

Courtney in FL

Graham was the same monkey as Ezra for his first Halloween. Graham doesn't like costumes either but somehow this year I got him to be a cowboy. I think I held my breath the entire night waiting for him to panic and demand to "take it off".


I love that the teacher has naturally "wiggly" hair.

Both boys look adorable in their costumes. I bought the same monkey outfit as Ezra wore for my two year old nephew - but when we put it on him, he wailed like he was being poked with needles. I can now at least see how cute it looks on a child who is not hysterical. Thanks.


It's so great to hear Noah wanted to partake in the whole trick or treating business on his own, even if it was last minute.

That last photo is priceless. Ez does not look impressed...but so ridiculously cute!!


Aunt Becky i'm with you. I need Noah's costume in an adult size!

He looks great and so does Noah. Last year a family came to my house with an Ezra sized baby in a monkey costume and the monkey had a bannana is his pocket. I nearly died from the cuteness!

I'm glad your boys had a great Halloween!

Amira @ Define "Mature"

Yay Noooaaaahhh!

Awesome costume, kiddo.

And Amy, I just about fell over from a loud sudden burst of "LOL"-ness when I saw that last adorably funny picture of Ez.

He's a pro with the facial expressions. A pro, I tell you!


Ahhh Noah's the best monster EVAH! Great approach with the costume t and t'ing-- with my son who'd just 2 months younger than Noah, that's pretty much what we need to do in many situations as well.

Even though my son may not have the intensity of reaction Noah may have to change and differences, the fundamental desire for routine is normal and expected for these little guys. Glad Noah had fun on his own terms... tackle next year, next year!

My son also broke down crying when I mentioned picking a costume for next year. Can you say sugar crash, late bedtime and daylight saving time all piled together? I'm medicating by eating his sister's candy.


How precious are your little men? Love the costumes, maybe I'll be a blue monster next year.


Could that adorable head be ANY rounder?! I wanna shmooooooosh the monkey cheeks! I'm so impressed with you and Jason for not pushing Noah to trick-or-treat. Most parents wouldn't have done it that way and those parents would be wrong. You guys have 2 lucky lucky boys. LOVE the blue monster!


Delurking because your kids are adorable...Love to see what they do next...

Also, want to mention that I miss Snarkywood...Would love to see you snark on Train-Wreck-From-Hell Lindsey Lohan...just a thought!

Yay Halloween, candy, and costumes that make your kids even more adorable than they already are...can't stand it :) !


I'm in my mid-twenties and I thought Up was terrifying and wildly inappropriate for young children. I feel you, Noah!


Both the boys look fabulously adorable in their costumes!

Jessica V

Those boys are so stinkin' cute! Lovelovelove Ezra's expression - it made me giggle.

Also, lovelovelove that Noah worked it out for himself - and that he had a good Halloween. Go Noah!

Jessica (@It's my life...)

So much better when the whole Halloween thing is child led, though I'm with you, until I became a mom I had no idea that some kids just freak the heck out at the sight of costumes and Halloween stuff. Now that I think about it I'm all "duh, that shit's scary." But I had to learn the hard way.
Then the second kid? No stress, no worries, and figured out that putting both hands in the candy bowls netted twice the amount of candy in about two houses. Go figure...

Jessica (@It's my life...)

So much better when the whole Halloween thing is child led, though I'm with you, until I became a mom I had no idea that some kids just freak the heck out at the sight of costumes and Halloween stuff. Now that I think about it I'm all "duh, that shit's scary." But I had to learn the hard way.
Then the second kid? No stress, no worries, and figured out that putting both hands in the candy bowls netted twice the amount of candy in about two houses. Go figure...


I know it must be hard to deal with Noah's various issues. But would it be bad if I said that was sooo cute? Because it was. :)

Hairy Farmer Family

I find with Harry that it can entirely depend on how well or otherwise I sell and incentivise the mooted experience to him. It's not always a winner, but it's amazing how often he can overcome a good deal of his patent sensory dislike and nervousness if he finally works out there's yummy food involved. Odd, that!

SUCH a staggeringly fabulous pair of boys you have there. I am seriously injured by Cute everytime there are photos!


Good for Noah. Good for him. I'm still waiting for the Earth beings to explain their ways to me. And beginning to sense that it may never happen.

Amy S.

The first picture in the monster outfit is just beautiful! That smile!

Parsing Nonsense

Aww, seeing Noah in his monster costume made me a tad weepy. Not because it's sad, just so happy he finally got to do trick or treating!

Both boys look adorable!


Awwww, Noah is Monster of Awesomeness. We love!

The expression on Ezra's face is PRICELESS. He's all, I AM MUCH TOO GOOD FOR THIS NONSENSE. And where's my damn candy?

Did Ceiba go dressed as a dog?


Ezra looks ecstatic. :)


omfg I'm going to eat them. I think I say this every time you blog.


Great stuff!

Fairly Odd Mother

That photo of him running toward you in his outfit is amazingly heartwarming. He's a smart kid!

Willow Wright

I'm so happy for Noah! What a great surprise you must have had as he appeared with his costume!


they are just too dang cute! love the pic of noah in all of his excitement!


I used to live about a block from the Cinema Drafthouse. Love that place. Miss being able to go there, drink and watch a movie for like a buck and not have to worry about driving home. Good times. Baby forced us into the even-more-burbs-than-Arlington since Arlington homes cost a bazillion dollars.


i refused to put on a costume this year too...
they are both so cute!


They are just the cutest things ever! And yay for Noah for deciding candy was worth it. I'm glad he had fun and hope that when the time comes next year, he decides the same thing!


Oh how we can over-invest (emotionally) in children's costumes. Good job just leaving it up to Noah.

An unrepentent tomboy, I went 180 one year (I was 7? 8? 9? don't remember) and asked to be a ballerina. My mom FLIPPED. I think that request, and the subsequent shopping for and modeling of costume, made my mother's mothering year, if not overall career. And then ten minutes before we headed out to trick or treat I got cold feet about my new girly-girl look and hid in the family bathroom.

Armed with scissors, those cream Halloween makeup sticks, and fake blood, I DESTROYED the only store-bought costume I'd ever (and would ever) had.

I think I told baffled neighbors that I was an alien-demon-dead-ballerina. It was a dumb costume, and my mom was sad. There are no pictures, for obvious reasons. But I was happy!


Whenever someone tells me I have frizzy hair now...I'll say - umm excuse me jackass - it's called wiggly.

I tried a hotdog costume on my kid...went over like a lead balloon. I'll keep this as hope for next year!


Just Noah. Too cute. Glad that he got it. Costume = good stuff to eat. PS My husband did not dress up. He joked that he was going out as "a middle-aged guy beaten down by life." HAWT!


Just Noah. Too cute. Glad that he got it. Costume = good stuff to eat. PS My husband did not dress up. He joked that he was going out as "a middle-aged guy beaten down by life." HAWT!


PS Little monkey is so sweet too! Cute little ones you have there!


You make me laugh almost every day. Thanks. (SO glad Noah had fun trick-or-treating.)


Congrats on your realization that there are some things we hold on to that our kids can just as easily give up (or enjoy when it's their idea!). My son with Asperger's Syndrome is 13 and we used to have many issues like that. One that taught me the best lesson was Disney World (we live in Florida). He used to be so excited to go but after just a couple hours he would have a melt down to go back to the hotel. We started out fighting it--you know, we wanted to get our money's worth, worried that he would never want to leave the hotel, etc. Eventually after a 20 minute screaming fit (him) and panic attack (me) we would go back to the hotel, rest and play video games for a while while the siblings swam in the pool. After a couple hours he was ready to go back to the parks. He just needed time away from the "fun" sensory overload. Once we realized what he needed we started to plan our trips this way--and guess what--it's actually better for everyone! It's great to have a break and relax in the middle of the day, instead of hoofing it all over the park untill you pass out at midnight. Sometimes they teach us some things, eh?


Noah changed his mind that quickly? I am a staunch admirer of such flexibility in a child. Another example of how perfect he is, I'd say.


Oh, I so so get this. You want them to be so excited about the whole shebang. Last year the kid was so FUCKING ANNOYED that we made him wear the big puffy costume and was just so lost in space when it came to trick or treating. Granted, he was young, but I look back at the pictures of the painful look on his face and I wish I had been able to read between the lines.

So yeah, I get it. It's more disappointing for you.

Also disappointing? My kid HATES PRESENTS. Ok, hate is a strong word, but he's so not into the whole present thing because the loudness of the paper ripping and the bags thrashing. That's such a buzzkill at Christmas. He'd rather sit in another room and spin a wheel.

Heather Shake Shake

Yep, BTDT.

After 9 years of raising one of these Other World kids, as an Earthling, I have to say the approach you took always works the best for us. Present the choices, what'll happen with each choice, let them decide. The more we pushed, the more he dug in his heels.

You handled it great!

Also, it does get better and before you know it, you'll be make costumes, like Naked Soles and Australian Spotted Jellyfish costumes just like me! You know, normal things like that.


I went to the West Hollywood Festival this year, and there were several people in boy scout uniforms with little houses tied to balloons tied to their backs. I thought UP was scary, but it was a great costume idea. Go Noah! I also liked the balloon boy costumes. Why am I so boring? Where do they get their ideas?

Beyond Alice

Cutest thing ever. I love this. :)


When Sam was 3, he wanted to be a robot, so I made a costume out of boxes and aluminum foil. He wouldn't wear it at preschool until about 20 minutes into partying with all the other costumed kids. So then he makes a "big entrance" and ALL the boys were entranced by the robot, surrounding him and pounding on the costume. Freaked him out!

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