What I’m Reading: Ethan’s Halloween Edition
Ethan is much more interested in Halloween this year and I’m all too happy to indulge, making October a month of books, activities, and crafts surrounding this, my least-favorite holiday, proving once again that kids make holidays fifty times more fun.
Finding not-scary, not-too-creepy Halloween books can be a little tough—believe me, we went through about 50 at the library last week. What is it about this “holiday” that makes it OK to scare the crap out of little kids?
But between my childhood book stash and a growing list of library finds, we’ve been able to keep Ethan’s Halloween interests under control…for the time being. He can’t get enough of these books!
First up, Happy Halloween, Stinky Face. I have it memorized and it’s only been in our house three days, checked out from the library and read every day since. We have the original, I Love You, Stinky Face, one of our favorites. While not quite as cute, this one fits the Halloween bill.
The little boy is once again inundating his very patient and creative mother with silly questions. “What if Reese’s butterfly costume turns her into a real butterfly…” and so on. The great part is it shows lots of different costumes (none gross or death-related) and sums up trick-or-treating in a family-friendly, candy-centric way.
Sure it’s totally silly, but the illustrations are fun, story is cute, and it’s not painful to read every single night. I do recommend reading the original though, or you may find it pretty strange that this mom calls her child “Stinky Face” on a regular basis. (There’s a Merry Christmas, Stinky Face too…it’s on the list.)
One I was sure to request from the library, Room on the Broom isn’t necessarily a Halloween book, but it fits the bill. Witches, cats, frogs, magic, a cauldron…it works. This clumsy witch keeps dropping things, each time getting assistance from an animal to find the item, then agreeing to take them for a ride on her broom.
And, hey, anything with a dragon is hit with Ethan. This happens to be a mean dragon that wants to EAT the witch, but luckily her new friends come to her rescue in a creative way. Cute, cute, cute. And not at all creepy. I’ll be checking out a few more of Axel Scheffler’s cute books.
Here’s a “vintage” favorite from our huge stash, Witches Four. It’s a random story about four witches that basically live in a witch sorority (kidding) and fly around on their brooms making mischief together. They eat bat-wing sandwiches and brush their teeth with spider paste—two things that totally grossed me out in a funny-kid-friendly way when I was little.
In a fascinating turn of events, the witches lose their hats while flying upside-down and inadvertently end up adopting cats in the end. Not really about Halloween, but witches and cats really only make sense in a Halloween setting. Ethan thinks it’s pretty awesome.
Even last year, Ethan was totally crazy about another one from my childhood collection, The Pumpkinville Mystery. I’ll never forget the first time Stu read it to him, not knowing it’s a pretty involved book, I heard him trying to read all the words without paraphrasing and it sounded hilarious, knowing a one year old was on his lap listening patiently.
So yes, it’s a little drawn out with greedy councilman that try to screw the town of Turkeyville by charging too much for turkey feed, but the gist is that a spooky man comes to town and gives a nice family some magic pumpkin seeds. They start a new town called Pumpkinville where everyone is equal and happy and no one goes hungry…there’s pumpkin soup, pumpkin bread, pumpkin pie, you get the idea.
Of course the councilman get mad that all their customers left town, so they try to go ruin Pumpkinville by destroying all the enormous magic pumpkins. The spooky character waves his hand and scares the pants off the bad guys, driving them out of town forever. It all ends with a new tradition of faces being carved in pumpkins to commemorate that day, October 31st.
These are just a few ideas for anyone looking for new Halloween books. We’ve been really enjoying our trips to the library located at the end of our block (I’m doing my best to keep my book-buying habit at bay) so hopefully I’ll have more to share before the big day. Ethan thinks the librarians are amazing (I do too!) and they get a big kick out of him, he’s just so excited when they engage him and make suggestions.
Oh, and we decided on a costume. Ethan will be a shark for Halloween this year. He’s pretty excited for his costume to arrive. Yep, I ordered one fully assembled so no DIY will be needed for this holiday. Gotta save up my time and motivation to figure out a project or two for the big Christmas/Birthday
What Halloween books are you reading right now? Please share!