by Leeann Burke

Every year at Halloween I tend to remember what it was like for me and my sister growing up. I lived in a small town when we trick or treated. So we knew everyone. I remember the costumes we chose were handmade, my parents never bought our costumes like they do today. One year our bags were a pair cut offs from my uncle that my Mom sewed. I can still remember the laughs we got from those who gave us candy. I think we got extra candy as a result.

As for the types of costumes we wore, I can’t remember any of them. The only thing I do remember is that they had to be big enough to fit over our winter coats. Yep back then we had snow (sometimes a lot of snow) on the ground.

My Mom one year embarrassed my sister and I to no end. How did she do this? Well she’d answer the phone with a spooky “Heeeellllooo”. I find it funny now, but back then we used to run to get the phone before she did. LOL

I remember one year our home was the most popular house and everyone wanted to come and sing “Happy Birthday” to my Mom. The funny thing is that it wasn’t even her birthday. Why did they want to do that? We lived in a small town in Quebec where only 10% of the population was English (that included us). However at the beginning of the year my Mom taught English at our school when the teacher quit and they couldn’t find a replacement quick enough. She taught for two weeks and everyone loved her. They used to say they learned more in those two weeks than they did a whole year of school. So they all wanted to show my Mom that they hadn’t forgotten what she’d taught them. My Mom thought it was nice.

Then we moved to Ottawa and I started to hand out candy instead of collecting it on Halloween. I have to say it was fun. One year we had a little girl no more than 18 months walk right up to the door drop her bag, lean against the door jam and sing the ABC song, except it wasn’t your ordinary version it was a sexed up one. By the stunned look on her father’s face he didn’t know she could do it either. She got tons of candy from us that night.

So what is your favourite Halloween memory?

art work courtesy of: stressedjenny


  1. Joanna

    What wonderful Halloween memories and what a wonderful tribute to your mother. My fondest Halloween memories are from the time I was a child living in the city of Wilmington, Delaware. There were row homes for miles. Hordes of kids in Halloween costumes trucked up and down the steps going to all the houses. I can still see that in my mind. Another memory is as an adult when I drove from my home in Delaware to Toronto, Ontario, to get married to my boyfriend who lived in Toronto. I got lost and ended up going through a neighborhood in Buffalo, NY, on Halloween night. There were kids dressed in costume all over the place then too. But I was too nervous about being lost to fully appreciate it.

    Carolyn/Cara Marsi

  2. Leeann - great post! I always get nostalgic at Halloween - more so than any other holiday - funny that. I remember using pillowcases for treat bags - they worked very well! And yes - home made costumes always - most kids wore the home made costumes.


  3. Leanna - My favorite part of Halloween is addressing each trick or treater as their costume persona.

    "Here you go, Batman!"
    "Some for you, your Royal Highness!"

    The kids sometimes forget that they're the character and then realize I'm playing along - I just love the grins on their faces when that happens.

    But one year my sister - who does the same thing - said to the little Spiderman who was at her door, "Oh thank heavens you're here to save me, Spiderman!"

    And the little guy took off his mask and said, "I'm not Spiderman," with a worried expression, so that my sister would know he couldn't really help her out. Priceless!


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