November 1, 2019

Gumby and Pokey, a dream crusher, plus retro pics

This year I admitted to Curly that I could not wait for Halloween because it meant no basketball or Irish dancing practices.  No games.  No school conferences.  Nothing but a pesky doorbell.

Back when the kids were younger, I enjoyed the challenge of creating awesome Halloween costumes.  As a result, half of our storage room in the basement resembles Jim Henson's studio.  

I made a knight riding on a horse for 5 yr old Laddie.  It got lots of funny looks because his legs were hidden under the horses long covering and we had fake legs attached to the sides. 

There were the Star Wars years.  Chewey.  Jawa.  Yoda.  Princess Leah.  Our Christmas card one year had a picture of the kids in Halloween Star Wars attire with the words:  May the Force Be With You this Christmas!

Probably my biggest accomplishment was the Sesame Street characters.  Big Bird.  Cookie Monster.  Oscar.  Elmo.  I did not make them all the same year.  It was gradual.
For a few years our friends had an awesome Halloween party - adults only.  One year a month before the party, I told Coach I really wanted to turn him into Gumby.  He is tall and thin.  I could make myself Pokey.  He resisted, but never get in the way of a creative wife and her pinking sheers.  

That year our friends decided NOT to host the party.  The costumes were already done.  I was so bummed.  Coach wore Gumby to work and treated patients while wearing it.  It got lots of laughs.

The same friends hosted a party this year.  It centered around their kid's birthday.  Adults and kids alike attended.  Not exactly the same vibe as the adults only raves we were accustomed to, but we dusted off Gumby and his pony pal Pokey too, because 'if you've got a heart, than Gumby's a part of you.'  

I am usually careful about not revealing our true identity - but I am throwing caution to the wind (or more honestly, ditching my fear that Mary Ann might stumble across this blog and see how her behavior over the years has impacted her neighbors).  I wanted you to see Gumby in motion.  Reg and Tank make cameos.  
Coach:  'I am hot.  I need to go to the bathroom.  I can barely bend my arms to reach my beer.'  Me:  'I worked hard on this costume, damn it, Gumby!'
I spoke to the mom of a friend of Curly's for a big part of the night.  Folks, I am struggling in the 'what am I going to do now that I have decided I would like a career' thought process.  This woman went on about this great job offer she just got.  While she was supposed to be deciding about it, she was lucky enough to get a 2nd interview to her dream job.  Translation:  she might end up with 2 job offers!  She started looking for a job because she wanted to get back into marketing from her current position.  

In my head, I was like, 'Shit, I can't get out from under my changing diapers position even though I have a marketing degree.'  HEAVY SIGH.  Then I confided in her that I am hopeful to get my book published, even if I have to self publish it, etc.  

Her current job is at some kind of a book distributor.  I think children's books.  Not sure, but she is not exactly in the business of editing and publishing novels.  STILL she decided to cut into my orange foam body and yank out my little defenseless Pokey heart with this gem:  'Oh, yeah.  Those don't really end up selling.'  

Not the kind of thing you say at a damn party when someone shares their hopes and dreams.  Right?!?!  Even if she is correct.  

I found Gumby and we took our one dimensional selves on home after that.  (really we are old, and we were ready to go anyway).  Party foul to steer clear of though:  I have a great job.  I have a great job offer.  I have a possible even better offer.  Oh, and you might want to rethink your dream.'  

retro!  Circa 2005

Last week:  Curly trying on Oscar in the basement.  He needed a few adjustments and I need to snap a photo of her wearing him once he got all spruced up.  
The four youngest:  circa 2013 or 2014
This did not require any sewing, but I felt it was simply genius after Tank got expelled an hour before the last day of school for fighting.  Missed graduation.  Then I suggested his 8th grade sister wear this cap and gown the next year with the boxing gloves and his name on her back, um to school.  The same school that kicked him out.  I gotta be me, and thankfully Mini embraces my sense of in-your-face-ness that I have going on.  
The knight riding on the horse.  I think this is Eddie.  Legendary.

Last week:  I told Reg a few times to try on Elmo before the school dance.  He did not.  I guess I made this when Tank was in 6th grade and Reg is in 8th.  Big difference.  Reg: 'Ugh - it is giving me a massive wedgie.'  If you look closely, you can see the feet that are attached are just dangling from that crease about 6 inches above his ankles.  


ccr in MA said...

Fun costumes! And I think that woman at the party must have some major insecurities, since that's a lot of bragging (and ego-popping) for one conversation.

Ernie said...

Probably true. As my kids reminded me her husband is awful, so there's that for her to deal with. We try to be social and invited a few couples over with their kids to run around and play flashlight tag over the summer. Her husband asked me if I put something in my AMAZING 7 layer taco dip. (I cannot for the life of me think of what it was - maybe jalapenos). I was like, 'Um, no.' He was like, 'oh maybe you should. It might make it better.' Like, what? Did you actually say that out loud? Nothing could make my 7 layer taco dip better - it is always the biggest hit. So, my lack of a career might suck - but at least I am not married to an ass.

Anonymous said...

Wonderful costumes. you are a great Mom to craft these masterpieces.

Ernie said...

Thanks! I do enjoy being creative and I had a great time trying to figure out how to make them. You should see the Irish dancing dress I made. Guess how excited Mini's dancing teachers were when I refused to pay $600 for a crappy used dress that was literally falling apart? They did not love that I would not get on board with their 'system.' Ha.

Gigi said...

Those costumes are FANTASTIC!! And how rude of that woman - and her husband. Sounds like they deserve each other.

Ernie said...

Thanks! It was always an exciting time of year when I took on the challenge of a few costumes. The house was often covered in a later of brightly colored fur.

Yes, I agree. It is always a challenge to find another couple to socialize with that we both have things in common with. When we invited them over and he asked Coach how recently he had had a good facial and also admitted that he felt he and his wife should never have moved out of his mother's house, Coach was like : 'Game over.' :)

Kari said...

OMG Gumby looks like he need a physical therapist......oh wait.

Beth Cotell said...

Your costumes are definitely EPIC!!!! And don't let the dream crusher stop you. Keep dreaming and keep writing!!

Busy Bee Suz said...

You could have a career in making clever costumes! These are so great. Please don’t let someone crush your dreams; you have passion and talent. Thanks for sharing all the past pics, they made me smile.

Ernie said...

Bahh ha ha ha! Good one! His facial expressions scream 'help me, my wife made me do this!'

Ernie said...

Thanks Beth! I do like an excuse to be creative. I have found some new avenues to dig deeper into the writing deal. I have good feedback so far from the writer's group that I joined.

Ernie said...

I was just telling my girlfriend that I would love to be a costume designer for plays, etc (because our high school just had a play and I know the woman who does the costumes - I believe as a volunteer). The only issue is that they are probably looking for a true, seasoned seamstress. I took a few classes, but I am a far cry from a seamstress. I roll more like this: do you have a laundry basket, some foam, a bit of cardboard, feathers, and an industrial strength sewing machine? Ha!

Bibliomama said...

Yeah, that woman was a punk-ass bitch and you rock at making costumes. I LOVE the Tank thing. And I think MacGyver-ing together the costumes is more impressive than just knowing how to work a sewing machine.

Nicole said...

OMG! Those are amazing. I can't believe you made all those - how incredible is that! Great job, I love them all and I cannot pick a favourite.

Ernie said...

Ha! Mini wore that to school the following Halloween after Tank got kicked out for fighting hours before graduation. The teachers made her take it off, but not before MANY people got a good chuckle out of it.

Ernie said...

They were a super fun project - several years worth of projects. The kids had a blast and I loved using my creative juices.