01 November 2010

The Friendly Lion Who Hates Things on His Head

There was a Great Halloween Debate this year about whether we should even take Eamon trick-or-treating.

Point the first: Eamon doesn't like sweet things. So why bother going knocking door-to-door to ask for some?

Point the second: Eamon really likes people. And doors (don't ask me why; he's 22 months old and that should be reason enough). So maybe he would enjoy trick-or-treating?

Point the third: Eamon doesn't understand "dressing up." So why bother?

Point the fourth: But Eamon really likes lions and he picked out his own lion costume.

Point the fifth: With all other things being equal, eh, why not?

So out we went. We went first thing while it was still light and before the inevitable late evening crankiness. Eamon put on his costume easily enough, though was a little upset when I undressed him from his regular day clothes and then would not let him take a bath (why else would I undress him in the evening?) He would not, however, put on the hood that actually made him look like a lion, rather than just a very cute little boy in a furry yellow jumpsuit.

We did manage one picture with the hood up. One picture.

We then set out on our sojourn. We decided to just try 2 or 3 houses and then head back, but our plan was quickly amended when it turned out that Eamon.Loved.Trick.or.Treating.

On so many walks previously, he desired nothing more than to go up to every door with cries of "Door! Door!" If anyone was out on their lawn during these walks, he wanted to meet them, to let them fawn over him, and could not understand why we were were against the idea of him introducing himself to the neighborhood.

But this--this was The Walk He Had Been Waiting For. He got to go up to doors and knock. Or ring the doorbell, which was astoundingly fun and we had to remind him not to do 3 or 4 or 55 times per house.

And then, after he knocked or rang--the door would open! And people would appear! And they would tell him how adorable he was! And they would give him things!!!!
(Side note: he did not understand what they were giving him or why, but he understood that the getting was good--and gosh darn it, he wanted those packages of things, whatever the heck they were).

After awhile, he seemed to grasp the idea of "candy" as an abstract concept. He knew that it was something to be "eaten" and much of the time he was not winning the adoration of complete strangers was spent attempting to "feed" the candy to his father. I think he thought of it kind of like his fake plastic food, though, rather than as actual edible objects.

After walking about 3 blocks, Eamon finally started to get tired...of walking, but not of Trick-or-Treating. We had a hard time convincing him that some houses were not participating; he was pretty sure that everyone wanted to meet the cute little mane-less lion. The only houses he didn't want to visit were the ones where the owners were dressed up themselves or had on masks. He didn't mind walking by costumed people as we went from house to house, but was determined not to take anything from anyone in a mask (probably not a bad life policy, come to that).
When we got home, Eamon immediately sat in the entry way and dumped out his bucket on the floor as if to take stock of his loot. He carefully surveyed every piece of candy...and then carefully put each piece back in the bucket. He then dumped the bucket again, put each piece back one by one, and continued in this way for a good 10 minutes. After awhile we decided that one or two pieces of candy wouldn't hurt him, so we sifted through and picked out something we thought he would like.
First, I gave him some M&Ms. He took them suspiciously, like Jack's mother with the enchanted beans, and just held them in his hand. I then tried to convince him to eat one, which he did with a raised eyebrow like maybe his mother had lost her mind. Everything was going well into he bit into an M&M...and blanched like I had given him sawdust, then spit it right out and handed it to me. He could not be induced to eat another.
Mind you, this is the child who eats raw lemons like they are apples.

So then we tried a lollipop. He took a few licks of that, but was quickly annoyed that he couldn't just eat it. He handed it to his father without a backwards glance.
Okay. No chocolate, no lollipops. In a last ditch effort we decided to try some Swedish Fish, because who doesn't like Swedish Fish? And he ate one. Then two! Hotdog, we had finally found something! But the third got stuck on his tooth, as Swedish Fish are wont to do, and it freaked him out. Aaron had to pry the thing off Eamon's tooth and after that, Eamon was done with his foray into Halloween candy.
Eamon took his bucket full of his prized possessions, dumped them into the large bowl of Halloween candy so I could give it all out to other Trick-or-Treaters, and went to watch Sesame Street on the computer with his father. Because, people, the real spirit of Halloween is not the candy...it is having people adore and fawn over you.
And thus ended Eamon's First Real Halloween.

1 comment:

Julie said...

Daniel walked IN every house we went to and told them how much he liked the decorations and pumpkins like it was a social call, while Riley took half the contents of the candy bowl while they were distracted. The message there is that it's both.