Holidays, Weekends

Halloween Weekend: Events

In the words of Asher from about 8:50 p.m. last night: “Well, that was a fun weekend!”

It was!! It was also a pretty full weekend, and I am kind of tired right now.

But I’m going to need to rally, because it’s a) only Monday and b) Halloween, meaning the festivities are not over yet!

Here’s a recap of a few of our Halloween weekend events:

Event #1: Asher’s “Trick or Treat” swim meet

This was both Saturday and Sunday morning, about ~30 minutes from home. He had to be there by 7:40 a.m. both days, which meant early 6:30 a.m. wake ups for him both days (earlier for me…).

Going to a swim meet means:

  • eating a good breakfast
  • packing a bag with snacks/ water/ chocolate milk/ etc.
  • packing extra towels
  • packing his Crocs
  • packing his swim parka
  • packing sweatshirts and other dry clothes for after the meet
  • making sure he has his racing suit/ goggles/ caps
  • printing heat sheets
  • marking his events on his arm
  • hopefully arriving on time for warm ups.

Whew. And that’s all before we even get there for the 4 hour meet. No wonder I’m always tired after swim meets.

This meet was held at a beautiful pool though:

Here’s Asher talking to his coach after one of his events and getting feedback on what he did well, and what he can improve on:

The final event on Sunday was a “silly Halloween relay” where they had to swim 25 yards wearing a t-shirt, then take the (wet!) t-shirt off and give it to the next person in their lane. There were 16 kids per relay team, so it took a while. Asher swam the final leg and his team won!! Woohoo! haha. They each got a full size candy bar as a prize.

wriggled the t-shirt on, about to swim

Event #2: Asher’s last soccer game

We had to go straight from the swim meet to soccer on Saturday, for Asher’s last game of the fall season. He was bummed afterwards, “Now I’m not going to get to play again until the spring season, and that’s like, 5 months away.” 😦

The game was held in a gorgeous rural location, and it was an unseasonably warm day. I ended up stripping off my sweatshirt and sat there in a tank top!

Event #3: HAUNTED FOREST

Saturday night was the Haunted Forest with Asher and friends!! I’ll jump ahead and just say that THIS WAS SOOOOOOOO MUCH FUN and I would go again in a heartbeat. Although- it was also very, very scary!! But in a good way. Exhilarating!

It ended up being just me, Ethan, Asher and two of his friends. Ivan bailed on me at the last minute because he got invited to play a soccer game….. and because he is unreasonably obsessed with playing soccer, I guess that trumped the Haunted Forest for him. Hmph. This also meant that I was the only ADULT in the group and had no husband along to protect me from the scary things. (I informed Ethan ahead of time that as my oldest son, he was going to stand in for Ivan and that I was going to be shrieking in his ear instead and grabbing onto his arm instead. He begrudgingly agreed. 😆)

Waiting in line for our turn to board the wagon ride out to the spoooooky forest…..

We had tickets for 6:30 p.m.

Asher and his friends also LOVED this whole experience. It was so, so well done!! I can’t say enough good things about how fun this was.

You ride on a tractor wagon ride (in the dark, with like, heavy metal music playing, through the corn fields) along with lots of other amped up people who were hooting and hollering, ready for a good time.

waiting to load up on the tractor

After a 5-10 minute ride, you disembark at the edge of the dark, dark forest (where people immediately start jumping out with chainsaws and stuff to scare you before you even get in the line). Then you wait in a line and each small group is released into the forest one by one, to navigate the Haunted Forest on their own.

It’s not only “just” a walk through the forest, either- there are tons of very elaborate props and dozens of actors and also many different haunted houses that you have to walk through (most of which were SO SCARY!!). We were all screaming and laughing and it was amazing. Asher’s one friend lost his voice from yelling so much! lol!!! At one point I thought I might have popped a rib out of place as I startled so hard from someone jumping out at me. hahaha.

We finally made it out.

Definitely planning to go back next year. After I described it all, Ivan was disappointed that he didn’t go!! I think he thought it would just be like, a walk through a forest with lit up jack o’lanterns or something. Definitely not! It’s geared for teenagers and up and is some seriously scary fun. 🙂 Ivan said we’ll have to all go next year for sure.

Afterwards we got caramel apples and kettle corn and hot chocolate and sat at a picnic table for a bit.

Event #4: Pumpkin Carving

And last but not least, we carved pumpkins on Sunday night. It ended up that just the boys + Ivan carved pumpkins- I kind of had an upset stomach at the time and just didn’t feel like it. So, I just supervised this time. (Which I don’t feel guilty about, because I ALWAYS carve a pumpkin. I think this is actually the first time Ivan carved one. He can be kind of hit or miss on this sort of thing- not something he grew up doing in Mexico, so he can be a little “meh” on certain traditions… But I asked him to take my pumpkin, and he did so, good naturedly.)

Ivan’s first ever pumpkin carving creation!

The boys had to point out that “Dad cleaned the pumpkin out WAY faster than you normally do, Mom.” Good for him! He is welcome to become the family’s pumpkin cleaner outer for all care. 😜

I sat and sipped some peppermint tea and half watched the dismal Packers game and half watched them carve their pumpkins. I forgot to take a pic of all 3 pumpkins lit! Will have to post that tomorrow.

I also went around and added little LED candles to all of my Halloween decorations! I have all sorts of little Halloween knick knacks that can be lit up in our family room.

And that’s a wrap on our pre-Halloween weekend! All that’s left is our annual chili dinner + Halloween cupcakes tonight + trick or treating. Both boys ARE still going, though they are kind of phoning in the whole costume thing. Ethan picked up a silly mask at Target and I think Asher is going as a Mexican National Team soccer player.

Happy Halloween!!

Daily Gratitude:

I am grateful that I did NOT chicken out and that I went to the Haunted Forest, because I seriously had a blast.

11 thoughts on “Halloween Weekend: Events”

  1. I don’t think I’d handle that Haunted Forest very well. Just this weekend I was mopping the floor in our dining room and happened to catch a sliver of my reflection in the French Door that connects our dining room to our kitchen and I nearly hit the ceiling thinking someone had come into the house without my knowing. It was my own reflection. Sheesh. The next day I opened the door of our car and a gust of wind made a brown leaf dance around on the floormat and I thought it was a mouse – or something?! – and also jumped. So…I’m not big into getting scared. But it sounds very fun…for someone else! And gold star to going along with the boys.

    I didn’t do anything with the pumpkin carving this year. I’m not a fan, and was happy to delegate the responsibility to my hubby!!

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    1. Hahaha, I am normally super jumpy too! I was very jumpy in the haunted forest as well. We joke about it because literally if my husband touches my arm and I’m not expecting it, I jump or gasp. Haha! I’m also a huge chicken when it comes to scary movies or really anything scary- but I think in this case I knew it was all pretend and I was sort of prepared for things jumping out at me.

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  2. I am here for the caramel apples and kettle corn! Also, that Haunted Forest looks very fun. What a fun and busy weekend!
    We haven’t carved pumpkins for a few years, which makes things easier since I like to have pumpkins on the step, and they have usually frozen/ thawed so many times by Halloween that they are completely mush.

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  3. I was on the sewing team for that pool! (Still can’t believe they actually ended up with two – high schools are wild these days)

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      1. No way!!!! That’s so cool! It is an absolutely gorgeous facility- I’m seriously jealous and wish it were our home pool. Not only is the pool area itself beautiful, but everything from the space to where the concessions stand is located, the spectator seating, etc is just so well laid out and perfect for hosting swim meets. Not to mention the two pool thing, plus the diving well for warmups/cool down. Just top notch all around!

        (And I’m glad you clarified design team- I was scratching my head for a second about the “sewing team”, haha!!)

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  4. what a fun weekend, busy but so much varieties of activities. sorry to hear that you didn’t feel well for the pumpkin carving, but the boys did a fantastic job. I love Ivan’s creation, so funny.
    I like that you always put up some decoration for the festival. I wish I can plan ahead to make it happen. oh well.. maybe I’ll do something for Christmas, although we are not likely to be home.

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  5. I am still a HARD PASS on the haunted forest! I can not handle things like that at all! But I am glad you all had fun!

    So Phil usually carves our pumpkin but I clean it out. I oddly really like to clean out the pumpkin. I find it really satisfying, plus we got some tools years ago when we started hosting pumpkin carving that makes it easier to scoop out the guts!

    What a fun, full weekend! We had a really really full weekend, too, so I was exhausted by Sunday night.

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  6. I was visiting a friend this past weekend and she and her 15yo son had never been to a haunted house, so we went and they had so much fun. The 15yo was so brave and spent a lot of the time making sure his mom and I were doing okay and trying to be the protector and it was so sweet and now I just want a teenager to go with me to all the haunted things!

    I’m glad you had such a busy and fun weekend and hope that the beginning of the week doesn’t give a huge letdown. Maybe that’s just me projecting on how sad I am about the week starting!

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  7. Ok, I said that I would have chickened out but you make the Haunted Forest sound like a fun experience – how scary was it REALLY? Because I won’t deal with a popped out rib because someone scared me too much LOL (so funny that Ivan ended up bailing and you had to be ‘brave mom’ and go with the boys. I am glad Ethan agreed for you to scream in his ear and grab his arm – how much of this was needed?) 😉

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