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Friday, October 30, 2009

Halloweens of Yesteryear: 2005

Many years ago, I heard from Japanese friends that there was a O-Bon Matsuri in Salt Lake City* every summer. In 2005, I finally found out when it was being held and planned to take my family. I pictured street vendors selling yakisoba and taiyaki, and everyone coming out in their festive yukata, like at the festivals in Japan. I made yukata for Jane and Zuzu to wear and was excited for them to experience a taste of Japanese culture.

What we found when we got there were a few sparsely attended booths advertising various products and companies. If you were hungry, there was a stand selling overpriced burgers and fries. The only people we saw dressed up besides my girls were the performers on the little stage that was set up between the booths. We did get to see a little bon odori performance, and if we'd come at the right time, we could have caught some taiko, but perhaps you've picked up by now that it was, on the whole, a disappointment. We walked through the exhibit on World War II Japanese Internment Camps inside the Buddhist temple, then drove back to Utah Valley for some dinner at a Japanese restaurant.

And the girls' outfits got put to good use again when Halloween rolled around.

"OK, give me your most natural smile."

"Let's try again."

Hey, at least they're both looking at the camera at the same time. That's a small miracle.

*Apparently there was a small but thriving Japantown in Salt Lake City, starting from the turn of the 20th century and up until the Salt Palace was built in 1967 on the land where it had been. Now Salt Lake's Japantown has dwindled to one small stretch of 100 South, where the Salt Lake Buddhist Temple and the Salt Lake Japanese Church of Christ are located.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Halloweens of Yesteryear: 2004

The Littles: Red Riding Hood & Bo Peep

We didn't get good pictures of Jane's and Zuzu's costumes on Halloween that year, so we dressed them up again and tried for a photo shoot in December. They were far too entertained by their hilarious joke of throwing down Bo Peep's staff to hold still, so eventually Peter gave up and resorted to video. We recycled Jane's Goldilocks dress from the year before and Peter's mom made the red cape and Zuzu's costume -- all except for the vintage pinafore. (Amy Moore, are you out there somewhere? Do you recognize the pinafore?) Bo Peep's staff was a giant plastic candy cane from the dollar store that I spray painted. It may have been the only time in my life I was happy that the Christmas merchandise was already out at the beginning of October.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Halloweens of Yesteryear: 2003

Baby Bear Zuzu, Papa Bear Peter, Goldilocks Jane, and Mama Bear Me

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Halloweens of Yesteryear: 2002

Speaking of when we went as Wizard of Oz characters, click on the picture below to see an album of the EIGHT costumes I made that year. It still kills me that after all that work, the only documentation I have are these half-decent snapshots.

Wizard of Oz Halloween Costumes 2002

*For some unexplicable reason, if you're using Firefox as your web browser, some of the pictures might show up as blank boxes in the album. Try using Internet Explorer or Safari instead.

Don't Tell the Emperor, But I Think My Backyard Might Be the New Rebel Base

Ewok sighted in my backyard yesterday morning:

Luke Skywalker was there too. Leia and her friend the giant turtle were off at school.

Did you know that Luke's eyelashes are amazing in real life?

Durn it, I already redid the ears once and they're still too big. When my sister's family and mine went as characters from the Wizard of Oz for Halloween 7 years ago, this fur suit was 15-month-old Molly's Toto costume. I didn't think it would work because it was too small for Ellen, but it turned out to have wide seam allowances and hems, and once I let them out, we were in business. I took off the little terrier ears and cut up the tail to make new ears which I meant to look like an Ewok's, but now I see are more like Mickey Mouse's.

Monday, October 12, 2009

I Have Good Excuses For All of the Other Days Too

I'm still here, I'm just taking the day off from blogging because it's Columbus Day.