Sunday, November 05, 2006

Zany Mama Hypothesis #4: There IS a mothering handbook.

Ever since Zane was born, I have had a sneaking suspicion that there is a mothering handbook somewhere – and I didn’t get a copy of it. Oh, I’m not denying that I’ve read books on parenting. I’m simply saying that I wasn’t passed that special (spiral bound?) notebook that tells every mother the real deal when it comes to raising your child.

My Argument: There are ways to get around the “no costumes” rule at your preschool.

When I got the information that was sent home to parents about Halloween, I will admit to being a little relieved. Our particular preschool has a “no costume” policy and doesn’t do candy parties. Before you begin to think that I’m a bah-humbug Halloweener, I should explain that my dread of the holiday was mostly based on the fact that Zane cannot eat the vast majority of Halloween candy. (Go figure. Almost every bit of candy has dairy, egg, peanut, or tree nut in it.)

Adding to my dread, were memories of our attempt to get Zane in an Elmo costume last year. My poor child screamed like we were asking him to pay Wesley Snipes back taxes when we zipped the suit on him, and he’s had an aversion to putting on anything red and furry since.

Last Year's Halloween Fiasco

All this to say that I was pretty pleased that Tuesday was supposed to be a fairly typical day at preschool.

So imagine my discomfiture when we walked into a preschool class full of children dressed up for Halloween. True, none of them were dressed in “costume” but they were all – every single last one of them - dressed up wearing some combination of orange and black. (The really natty ones had on outfits with orange and black stripes). Some wore cute little shirts that said boo! or had ghosts on their turtlenecks. Others had skirts or pants decorated with pumpkins or black cats.

My kid had on grey sweatpants and a white t-shirt.

Apparently, the handbook tells mothers how to circumvent those pesky preschool rules that are designed to kill a child’s sugar-induced holiday buzz.

Fortunately, Zane didn’t seem to care. I think I have a few more months before he starts to get embarrassed by his mother’s gaffes and amateurish attempts at child-rearing.

He seems happy, though, so I’m just going to go with that.

Please feel free to share your own parenting gaffes or your own parent's gaffes in an effort to make me feel better. I'm not beyond feeling being buoyed up by the incompetence of others.


zingerzapper said...

When trying to fit Seth into an adorable giraffe costume that slid over top of his head, he proceeded to kick, scream and refuse to put his arms through. Therefore, refusing to wear his sweet costume for trick or treating. We head over to the brother's house where we promptly put the cute 15 month old, sans costume, in the wagon. Upon traveling with my nephew, who points out to all givers of candy, his costumeless cousin, we come upon a woman who calls us out. She looks at him, who is now without costume and refusing to get out of the wagon (way too comfortable), and says,"well at least he has a pumpkin bag for his candy." Then looks at me like she knows I'm going to eat it (its not me, its his sugar-craving dad)!! From that point on we refused to go into the driveways and just hung out in the street. Luckily Seth's cousin is sweet and would periodically bring treats back and throw them in his candy bag. Rule #1, Just give up on trick or treating until they want to do it, no matter how cute they could look in their costume. As for her, I'm thinking about egging her house next Halloween!

Nadolny said...

Mine was the one with the BOO shirt. When Scooter was there, he had a shirt with a bat on it for Halloween (yes one for each year, different designs and sizes). My wife dresses 'em and I didn't even what she was wearing on Halloween. I also showed up with her on Thursday, ready for school, to be reminded that there were conferences that day. I had it on my calendar, but didn't check it.

If it makes you feel better, I forgot about picture day and Andie was wearing non-dress up clothes. Ce-La-Vie (or however the French spell it). My wife wasn't too happy with me, but it turns out Andie wouldn't agree to individual pictures anyway (although she acquiesed to the group one).

Kristi said...

I was always the bad mom who ignored the preschool notices. So not only would I forget the costume, but I'd forget snacks for the parties, bathing suits for wet day, pretty much anything they asked me to bring. And then I'd shrug it off and say, "My kids are too little to remember this." No harm done.

allrileyedup said...

Think of it this way, your son was probably much more comfortable during his day of school.

My son hates costumes too. This year, I got him pajamas that had the Incredibles logo on it and then my husband and I wore the real Incredibles costumes so everyone would know who he was.

Zany Mama said...

Nothing in your story surprises me - except the lady calling you out.

I think egging her house next year is entirely appropriate.

I will admit that I did have the thought, You're kidding me. Even Nadolny's kid is dressed up for Halloween. That guy wears neon yellow camo, for goodness sakes. I am a bit relieved to know that it was your wife's doing - although that does support my hypothesis. That woman clearly has the handbook.

I'm so glad that Zane had no idea that refusing to take individual pictures was an option. Although I'm sure that he did his "pained smile" look for the camera.

Right on. It's nice to know that I have company in the whole crappy-preschool-parent category. You're right, no harm done.

Thanks for stopping by - this blog is certain to be a place where you'll feel better about your own parenting, by comparison.

Pajamas! That's brilliant.

Dustin said...

I will make my future children participate in Halloween/ Trick 'or Treating for no other reason than to gorge myself on their hard earned candy while they sleep. Yes, I know this is morally reproachable, but I don't think that will deter me. =)

Zany Mama said...

I just have a feeling that you are going to have children who will completely rebel and not like candy at all. That seems to be the way it works.

You can't make them do anything they don't want to do - well, unless it's a safety issue and/or you are willing to manhandle them into submission.

Glad to have you back around!