I am personally a late comer to the whole phenomenon of Halloween.  Growing up in England it was not that big of a deal.  Now however.  Having kids.  In Southern California.  October 31st is a date that looms large on the calendar.

Trick or Treat is an institution here.  There is something undeniably magical and wondrous about walking around the neighborhood and being literally swamped by wave upon wave of miniature sized Batmans, Supermans, princesses and ghosts – of all ages – as you wander from one elaborately decorated house to another.  Each one more fantastical, welcoming and generous than the next.  As if there is an unspoken Halloweeners code to out-do each other.

It is impossible, for even the most cynical of hearts, not to be swept up in the theatricality of the whole event.  And it does feel like a real event.  As you join the masses of children shuffling along the sidewalk, and dodge the numerous children who are already experiencing sugar highs, it is impossible not to feel as though you are on the set of a Spielberg film.

For the first time – Jaxon had a costume change during the day.  Both boys began as rescue bots: Heatwave and Bumblebee respectively.

Heatwave and BumblebeeBumblebee Costume

Jaxon goes into fire truck mode as Heatwave.

Heatwave Costume

Skyer gets into racing car mode with Bumblebee.

Bumblebee Costume

By the afternoon, Jaxon had decided to ring the changes and – still embracing the whole rescue / helping theme that is so beloved of boys – became a policer officer.  An unarmed police officer it should be noted.  A sort of US / UK hybrid copper I guess.

Kids Police Costume

We began the afternoon at a party down the street.  It’s great to see all the kids compare costumes and swap accessories.  A plastic Captain America shield for a plastic Policeman’s badge. Sadly no plastic was lost or damaged as a result of these endeavors.

There was an attempt by the kids to “make mummies out of the mommies” and wrapt them up in toilet paper.  I decided to spare their blushes in this post.  In any case we the tables were quickly turned.

Jaxon broke free and exclaimed “I am the ice man!”

Kids Police Costume

We begin our pilgrimage for cheap confectionary that we will never actually eat.

Yes that is a giant inflatable black cat that visitors walked under to gain access to the house. Suitably spookily decked out inside I should add.  Don’t ask me what they do with the cat for the other 364 days of the year.  I don’t think it’s considered polite Halloween etiquette to ask.

Cool Halloween House

Surely some one engaged the services of a professional pumpkin carver at this house?  Or am I even less “crafty” than I previously thought?

Cool Pumpkin Display

It’s hard to capture how elaborate some these houses really are.  Here giant spiders, industrial amounts of fake cobwebs, tombstones and hanging ghouls lead the way.

Cool Halloween House

Skyer “on the streets” mid trick or treat.  Eyes firmly on the candy prize.  Pumpkin bucket locked and loaded.  I am not even going to attempt to wrestle with the mixed messages of accepting candy from strangers, begging for things in general, or, for that matter, the concept extortion (trick or treat?) that the night sends to kids!  My head will explode if I try.

Bumblebee Costume