We are approaching the end of the first week of the first school holiday over here in France. The kids get two weeks off around Halloween time (now), and the next is for Christmas time. Having Célénie and Louis-Auguste at home has been fun because we get to go to the movies, eat lunch with cousins, sleep in (I like this one), have play-dates with friends (them, not me although I do have friends here–I swear), oh and we get to create a Halloween costume from scratch!!!!
OK now you should be aware: I don’t even know how to use an iron. So when Célénie asked me to help her create a dress from large sheets of velvet fabric I was a little scared. Louis-Auguste to the rescue: he has a knack for sewing–future designer? Perhaps…
So I provided the ideas–“creative visions” if you will–and he did the hard labor; we made a great team. After a few pricked fingers, some frustration and a lot of orange and black fabric, I have to say we did a pretty good job! There are some tweaks to be made before Sunday–one sleeve is a bit larger (and uglier) than the other–but other than that it’s a success.
If you’re wondering what she is being I must admit, I am right there with you! First I thought it was an elf–she ordered prosthetic elf ears that arrived yesterday. BUT she also ordered vampire teeth…oh and GIANT black wings! They are literally bigger than my back and very heavy. I can’t imagine she will actually be able to wear them–she is so tiny! But we will see. So yeah, I have no clue what all of that will create in the end.
Louis-Auguste’s costume was a bit easier: he ordered it online and it came today (no assembly required, thank God). Instead of telling you I’ll just post pictures after Sunday –that way you can guess what the elf-vampire-princess is too!
All of this Halloween hype is not typical France. You won’t find Halloween candy in stores, no isles filled with costumes (we made ours, remember?!), and really, not many people do anything for the Night of the Living Dead. My neighbor at home would be horrified by this! Her Halloween spirit, and the decorations that cover her house are enough for the whole street (it’s the excuse my mom has for decorating for “Harvest” and not for “Halloween”)
But I am not really bothered by the lack of Halloween here. It was never a favorite of mine–I take after my mom on that one 🙂 But I LOVE fall and pumpkins and the changing leaves and Thanksgiving (I realize there is no hope for this holiday in France) so when the kids wanted to carve some pumpkins I was happy. I was ready to go to a pumpkin patch and make a day of it–that didn’t happen. Instead Bruno (one of the workers at the winery) came over with some pumpkins which we gutted (Bruno wanted the inside for soup/pie) and Louis-Auguste carved a face in one.
OK not a big deal, but I wasn’t ending this pumpkin carving without doing my favorite thing: baking the seeds! The kids had never heard of this so pressure was on to make a yummy snack. Of course it didn’t turn out like I had planned (cooking here hasn’t been going too great so far). My idea was to make half with salt and half with sugar–The Duband children have sweet tooths! If I knew how to cover them with chocolate I would’ve! So I figured out the conversion between celsius and fahrenheit–YGG (for my mason street girls) and lit the oven. No but literally, I had to use a lighter for this oven and it took a few tries and a lot of stinky gas smell (don’t worry I waited between attempts for the air to clear–I wasn’t going to blow anybody up!) After a while I smelled something else…BURNING! Awesome, I hadn’t taken into account that sugar and salt don’t cook the same. Needless to say, the sugar ones were black as the night when I pulled out the tray. OOPS! But we enjoyed the salt ones (I like them better anyways) and actually Louis-Auguste bravely tried the sugar ones. He didn’t seem to be bothered by the charcoal flavor that was added.
So maybe I didn’t successfully bring Halloween to Chevanne but I still have 3 days in which to redeem myself. Maybe I will find a really awesome costume to wear? Any ideas?