Last year for Halloween, I declared we were having a theme. It was only my second Halloween as master costumer to five kids, and I felt so crazy the year before trying to get everyone in a costume they liked, and they just looked a little like a ragtag band when they were all dressed. I talked it over with the Bigs, and we decided to go with a Wizard of Oz theme. Three months and 60 hours of sewing later, we wound up with Glenda the Good Witch, the Scarecrow, The Tinman and, of course, Dorothy. A certain 13-year-old rebelled against the theme and was a very expensively costumed Belly Dancer.

Truthfully, making all those costumes nearly put me in the hospital. Add to that the fact that this year I had just come off months of studying for my certified personal trainer exam and a very busy summer, and I declared it was the year of buying costumes.

The Captain has been going to speech and occupational therapy since he came to our home. Our therapy center is in the same shopping center as Navy Recruiting and two doors down from Army and Marine recruiting. We see a lot of people in uniform, and we call them all heroes. For instance, we’ll drive up to the center and someone in uniform will exit one of the doors and my kids will fly out the doors of the car yelling, “Hi hero!!”

We’re enamored with heroes. In the summer we began a discussion about other heroes in our community– police officers, teachers, doctors, nurses, firefighters, and so on. For Halloween this year, we decided to have an “everyday heroes” theme. Each child selected his or her favorite hero.

Like all little boys, The Blitz is enamored with fire trucks and fire fighters. He was the cutest little fireman EVER! 4-year-old Tinker has a stint in the hospital last summer, so she was a nurse. The Captain, no surprise was a soldier, aka “army guy.” Sunshine was a police woman and Pepper was Rosie the Riveter, the symbol of female powering the industrial machine in World War II.

All the kids were so proud of their costumes, and the little ones will keep enjoying theirs in the dress up basket. It was so fun to have a theme and even better to represent the people who make our country great. My only question is, how do we top that next year?