Since I became Orthodox I’ve had a real conflict each year about celebrating Halloween. I know there are some strong objections to a Christian’s participation in a holiday that has it’s roots in paganism, but I’ll admit I just love Halloween. I have no intention of practicing Wicca, lighting black candles or making potions. I have fun at Halloween for the same reason I adore Renaissance festivals. It’s fun, it’s nostalgic, it’s magical make-believe.
One of the things I’ve done with my kids is to read Halloween stories during the weeks before October 31st. The books have become well worn, and I’m sad to think that as my kids get older, they won’t want to continue this ritual. My eight year old was already giving me grief last night when I pulled the books down from the shelf to read before bed. He whined that he was too old to read baby books. Thank goodness my six year old still gets the fun of sharing books together. Below are some of our all time favorites.
We’ve read “The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid of Anything” a million times. This is one of the most fun to read because my kids and I can act out all the scary sounds and movements: clomp-clomp, wiggle-wiggle, shake-shake, clap-clap, boo-boo. It’s a real workout right before bedtime.
“The Big Pumpkin” is just adorable. A witch, a vampire, a ghost and a mummy try and pull off a big pumpkin from a vine to make a pie. It takes a little bat to help them work together.
“Scary, Scary Halloween” is beautifully illustrated and not scary at all.
I’ll be going to the bookstore in the next day or two to add a couple more new books to the reading list. One October night years from now, the kids will be grown and out of the house. I’ll be an old lady sitting in a rocker, getting all teary-eyed with memories as I read these books to myself and reminisce about long-ago October nights when we celebrated the fun of Halloween.