I wore my Elmo shirt and my Santa Claus hat, and joyfully opened the door to greet all the trick-or-treaters.
It was great to see the looks on the children's faces when I opened the door.
Some cried, "Look, it's Elmo!" Others said, "Hey, it's Santa Claus!"
Some look confused, maybe because Elmo had a Santa hat on.
No matter what, they took our candy
And I answered back, "I'm Elmo-Ho-Ho-Ho!"
My wife didn't have to work at the hospital this Halloween night, so we were able to pass out candy to trick-or-treaters together. She was dressed as my wife in civilian clothes (no nurse's scrubs). And we enjoyed the evening together.
When I opened the door to one little boy, he just smiled at me. I jokingly asked him, "What do you want?!" He replied, "I want candy, but I will take money!"
I've never had a trick-or-treater ask for money before. He's a smart kid! He may go far in this capitalist society of ours.
There were some adults that came to our door trick-or-treating too, and they didn't have kids with them and they weren't in costume.
When Lynn saw that, she smiled and said, "Well, times are tough!"
Times may be tough, but a lot of people spent money on costumes and decorations and candy and treats. Halloween is a fun time for a lot of people.
The cars were lined up on both sides of our street so parents could drop off their children and follow them as they went door to door. We had a traffic jam in front of our house.
My two granddaughters were at our house on Halloween too. That made the night all the more special. Charli, almost 3 years old, was dressed as a clown. Kori, 4 months old, was dressed as a pumpkin. And of course, Papa, was dressed as Elmo Claus.
I decorated two pumpkins for the pumpkin decorating contest at Harton Medical Center in Tullahoma this year. My wife works in the OB department, so she asked me to help.
I painted two baby pumpkins, one for each of our granddaughters. I got some doll arms and legs at the craft store and stuck them in the pumpkins. Lynn put hair and bows on the pumpkins heads, and the nurses in OB put pacifiers in their mouths. They set them in a bassinette with some stuffed animals and wheeled them down to the cafeteria and entered them in the contest. The OB department and our little baby pumpkins won the "Best Over All" category. Yay!
I also had the opportunity to read a book to several groups of children at East Side Primary School this year. I read "The Berenstain Bears Trick or Treat." That was a lot of fun for me. Of course I donned my Elmo shirt for the occasion. I left my Santa hat at home though.
I am proud to say that I didn't gorge myself on Halloween candy this year. I did sample some tasty treats, but I was able to resist over doing it.
I've had fun. And now, we have Thanksgiving and Christmas and New Years to look forward to. I can wear my Elmo Claus outfit for all of those special days too.
-- Doug Dezotell is the pastor of Mt. Lebanon UMC and Cannon UMC. He is a former staff writer for the Times-Gazette, and he is a husband, a father, a grandfather, and a friend to many. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.