My blog is about the scenic, stressful, spectacular life (and everything screwy in between) of a
California girl turned expat transplanted to the land down under: North Queensland, Australia.

October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween! *wipes tears*

It seems I have been MIA for the last couple of days, but Thursday we had to take a drive to THE CITY! And Friday I wrote on my other blog. Speaking of my other blog, I don’t really have a set name for it. The address is “” (shameless plug), because that’s the username I signed up with. I was thinking of re-naming it something like “Hed’s Head” because it deals with all thing mental. Thoughts? Suggestions?

Yesterday Mum and I went shopping at Woolies (Woolworth’s, the local grocery store), and in the produce aisle they were selling “carving pumpkins”. In America you would see this normally. You would see makeshift pumpkin patches by the side of the road. There would be giant stores that sell only Halloween-related items. Houses would be decorated with fake spider webs, carved pumpkins, witch cut-outs on the door, and orange Christmas-type lights. Not in Australia. Halloween isn’t really celebrated-actually last night I threw a silent tantrum when my father-in-law called Halloween “a stupid Yank holiday that was created just to make money”. Some of the articles I have read lately in the newspaper mirror his sentiments. My husband tried to placate me by saying that it would be like Australia celebrating the Fourth of July or Memorial Day. Um…no! It’s freaking HALLOWEEN! The second best day of the YEAR! I totally understand I won’t have Thanksgiving, or Martin Luther King day, but Halloween? Ugh, I’m heartbroken!

Halloween in my family is a big damn deal. I would actually choose to work on Thanksgiving then have to work on Halloween night. I trick-or-treated until I was 15 (I was Elvis that year), and when I was seven months pregnant at 18 I dressed as “Snow White who swallowed a Dwarf”. My hometown boasts the best damn pumpkin patch in all of Southern California! My mom lives in a nice tract community, so its a safe and compacted place to trick-or-treat. Every year my mom spends about $60 on candy, and we actually tally how many kids come to our door (a few years ago I remember there were 240 kids!). We all take turns getting up and handing out candy, and we all have to come to the door when there is an awesome costume or a cute baby dressed as a bee or a bear. My grandpa lives on a sparse street where few kids come , yet every year he always buys tiny paper bags and fills them to the brim with candy bars. That was always the best treat we got each year-and even in our adult years my siblings and I get a bag from Pop (aww now I’m teary eyed because I’m missing it!).

On Halloween night we usually play cards at the kitchen table while AMC’s “Fearfest” is on playing a “Halloween” marathon. Yesterday I downloaded the 2-disc limited edition of “Halloween” (my favourite scary movie!) and “Halloween 2” so J and I can pop popcorn and have a scary date night. I also downloaded “Bravo’s 100 Scariest Movie Moments”. If you haven’t seen this special and like scary movies, you are truly missing out! Oh, and jack-o-lanterns? That’s our thing. None of us are freehand artists or anything, but we loves us some carving kits! At Woolies there were only pumpkins (and two days ago they were $22. $22! I got one for $5), so I bought it and have an idea on what I’m going to carve. I’m just hoping it comes out well-and I will definitely post pictures, good or bad! Here are some highlights of J’s first ever Halloween, in 2008:

J hard at work on his inaugural pumpkinJimmy Outlining


What skill! He definitely belongs in our family!Jimmy's Phantom


My pirate shipHed's Pirate Ship


Side by sideThe Pumpkins


Happy Halloween!


  1. Awwww...sorry Hed. What would happen if you had your own Halloween party in Australia. Maybe not this yearn but next year? Invite people to dress in costume, have lots of candy and decorations. It might catch on!!!

  2. Bummer about not celebrating Halloween. I am sorry about that. I agree with Barb- why not have your own Halloween party?? Show people that you can do it up pretty good...sorry that your father in law thinks it just a silly Yank holiday...hang in there...

  3. I hear what you are saying Hed. And I agree with Barb and Colenic. Have the party and show us Aussies just how much fun Halloween can be. We just need educating, thats all.

  4. My community had trick or treating today (Saturday) because apparently we can't trick or treat on actual Halloween because its on a Sunday? Anyways, we moved into our new house 3 weeks ago and MUCH to my freakin' disappointment...NO ONE trick or treats down my road. Not a single child came to take my candy. It's worth moving for in my opinion.

  5. I was talking to my cousin in NZ last night and he informed me the same thing you just did, that Halloween isn't a big deal over there and is relatively a newly celebrated holiday.

    Here where we live its a busy street so parents don't like taking their kids on our road. The first year we were here I was pregnant and hubby was in the field so I did it all by myself and had 230 kids and bought only for 75! The following year I bought for as many as I had the year before and had 100. Then last year we had about 40. So this year we bought only chips and for 130 kids. This way if not all the chips go at least its something to brag my daycare kids to be good for!
    I'm not ashamed to bribe them!

    I'll post pics of our 3.99 carved pumpkins for you later this week.

    *handing you a bag of chips for your pillow case*


  6. I brought heaps of sweets to pacify kids that may be tempted to egg my house if I didn't give them anything. NO ONE CAME!! NOT ONE KIDDIEWINKLE! Guess I'll be popular in the office tomorrow.

    Does QLD get a public holiday for the Melbourne Cup? Another reason I love Melbourne- we may not do Halloween but we get a day off work for a horse race!!

    FF xo

  7. You're from So Cal too?! Where? And thanks for the follow!

  8. Barbb, Colenic and Mynx-that's an awesome idea! I hope next year we are situated in our own place and I actually have some Aussie friends to invite!

    Miss Vicki-thanks! I'm writing on Nov. 1 and sadly, was too lazy to carve ours last night. J says we should do it today in honour of it being Halloween in the States today.

    Jumble Mash and CBG-lame! You know there are always the prime spots though hee hee! I remember going to the rich areas one year, and those assholes were so chintzy!

    FF-Yes...give them away! If I had bags of lollies just sitting around...oh boy. Um, QLD doesn't get a holiday but the Cup is all over the news nonetheless. Excited to see what all the fuss is about!

    Adorkable-I grew up in mostly Riverside, but I was born a 909'er lol. My husband is going through In N Out withdrawal!

  9. Halloween parties are the best! I only say this because one of my greatest joys in life is dressing up :P
    But trust me, Halloween as a holiday is not going to catch on here. What sane person would spend ridiculous amounts of their own money on lollies for strange beggar children? It's definitely one of those crazy American things.

  10. Your pumpkins are simply gorgeous! Ideas for next year, such talent. Thanks.

    We had such a good time - we actually tripled our trick or treaters this year - to a whopping 15! We were thrilled. I love the kidlets in their costumes.