Did you have a Happy Halloween? I hope you did. We had lots of fun, and the whole time I kept thinking about how wonderful it was to be healthy this year, NOT recovering from the swine flu, and having the energy to really throw myself into the festivities. We had Putrid Punch, which the kids completely loved, probably because we never ever drink Kool Aid and because ginger ale normally is reserved for sick tummy days. And who could resist balls of lime sorbet floating on top? And gummy worms? I made finger cookies, and those spider cupcakes, which were also a big hit with T. and her cousins. L. wouldn't eat one because he's not a big fan of any food being transformed to look like something else--especially when that something else is an insect. But he ate lots of the vegan pumpkin pie (shhhh! I didn't tell him it was vegan. He's so sensitive about changes in food that I was afraid he'd be put off if he knew), and everyone else who tried it didn't seem to miss the eggs or evaporated milk. I thought it was better than regular pumpkin pie, actually--I liked how the texture was firmer and how it wasn't overly-sweet. I used regular coconut milk creamer instead of the soy milk, and instead of the granulated sugar syrup I used regular sugar. I also used a vegan pie crust from Whole Foods--delicious! I made soy-dog eyeballs, with a dollop of Tofutti-Better-Than-Cream-Cheese and a sliced black olive. I think I was the only one who ate them, though, but I thought they were strangely addicting. I was going to be Princess Leia for Halloween, since we happen to have Princess Leia hair lying around from the time my sister came and dressed up as her, but Scott went as a stereo speaker, so I decided to be a vinyl record. We made a cute pair, I think. Have you checked out L.'s DIY Clone Trooper costume yet? Just when I thought the work was done, we had to spend some significant time on Saturday afternoon making adjustments to the body armor and fixing the helmet up to standard. L. added the green paint, to go with the colors on the armor. I also made some adjustments to T.'s ghost costume, because she wanted the bottom of the sheet to be more "ruffely" like a "real" ghost. In our neighborhood, everyone gathers at one particular cul-de-sac for a costume "parade" of sorts and some games, food and dessert. Then, as soon as it gets dark, we trick-or-treat down through the neighborhood and back to our house. The first year or two we lived here we couldn't go the distance. Our neighborhood is an older one, with huge spread-out lots, and walking it is work--for big legs, and little ones, too. But this year we made it--all of us--and returned, the children's plastic pumpkins brimming with too many treats, to our house, and to the four pumpkins, all aglow. And now, suddenly, somehow, it's November.