Saturday, October 28, 2006

Unicorn bits

When I left the UK 21 years ago, Halloween was not a particularly big deal there. We never went trick-or-treating and didn't carve pumpkins. I do remember bobbing for apples. I also remember trying to carve what I think must have been turnips at Guides - boy, was that hard! One of my nephews celebrates his birthday at the end of October and for one of his birthday parties when he was very little I sent over a box of Halloween related stuff - paper plates and cups, and decorations. My sister had asked me to send them over because it wasn't easy to find them in the UK. She's told me that's no longer the case. I believe it as my brother has just sent me pictures of the pumpkins he carved with his kids this week - beautifully done - and the kids and his wife trying on their costumes before the big night. Fun as it is for them, I think it's a bit sad really - another example of the homogenization of cultures.

We live in a neighborhood with lots of kids and Halloween is definitely a big deal here. I forget how many pounds of candy we got through last year and I'm a bit worried I haven't bought enough for this year. Of course I'd rather have too much than too little. The leftover candy always gets eaten eventually, so it's not wasted. It does contribute significantly to the seasonal weight gain though - Halloween followed by Thanksgiving and Christmas. Three occasions for overeating, all too close together. We have neighbors who give out stickers instead of candy, which I think is a great idea. A dentist friend always has a bowl of candy and a bowl of toothbrushes. It's amazing how popular the toothbrushes are with the kids!

Many schools here are careful about how they deal with Halloween as there are families that strongly disapprove of it for religious reasons (even to the point of keeping their kids home from school for the day.) The Littlest American had a Halloween celebration at his pre-school on Friday though - they were trying to spread out the sugar high. He had a wonderful time wearing his frog costume and trick-or-treating. He said his favorite treat of the day was the 'unicorn bits' on the cupcakes. It took us a while to figure out that he was talking about candy corn - a popular candy at this time of year. We asked who told him it was called unicorn bits and he insists he decided on that name for himself. Seems like a good name for it.

No comments:

Related Posts with Thumbnails