I Found The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown

Almost every Halloween I run a post about things that frighten me, but I didn’t do it this year because I forgot.

Yep, the mighty JackB with a memory that can put elephants to shame forgot to run the list of things that frighten him and I can only attribute it to old age and a growing sense of impending doom.

Scratch the doom part, I don’t believe that for a moment. Might be dealing with a few challenges and fighting a few battles but doom is not one of them. Don’t live in cleveland so gloom isn’t part of it either.

Guess we can say this happened because I was focused on other things.

Halloween Lessons- We Have Neighbors

The kids love going trick or treating because they like getting dressed up and getting candy. I like it because it creates a festive atmosphere in which the neighbors open their doors and come outside.

It is nice to see people come out of the bubbles we walk around in and hang outside. That is not to say we don’t know our neighbors or that we don’t live in a good neighborhood because neither is true, but this is different.

Because on Halloween the entire neighborhood throws an impromptu block party and my kids get a chance to see what life is like when people stop to look around and smile at each other.

This year we went to the neighborhood I grew up in. It was their first time trick-or-treating there and they laughed when some of the “really old” people talked about me when I was a boy.

Since they no longer go to private schools they also got to experience what it is like to see kids from school trick-or-treating in the same neighborhood. It was fun and part of me loved it because it made me feel like I was 11 again.

Halloween Lessons- Nintendo

I am a brand ambassador for Nintendo and have been for more than a year now. When I first began I did so because I thought it might be fun and because I thought it might provide an opportunity to get some swag my kids might like.

But I didn’t spend any time considering how much blog fodder doing so could produce. I intentionally haven’t written about them as frequently as I could because I don’t want people to feel I have been compromised or that they own me.

It is why I disclose my relationship and talk about it openly. They don’t pressure me to do anything which is a big part of how they have gained my trust.

However what really sticks out is that I feel like they really value my opinion and  that I am not treated as just another number. Some of that credit goes to their agency and some of it to the company.

This year they helped us decorate our home for Halloween. They sent over the pumpkin you see above (plus one more not shown), decorations and candy.

My children were over the moon and I can’t tell you how much fun it was to see the smiles on their faces.

Halloween Lessons- Gratitude

When we got home we sat down and talked about how lucky we are and why we should be grateful. I reminded them about our family and friends back East. We talked about how my nephews, niece,sister and BIL slept in the basement because they were worried about what would happen if Sandy blew a tree(s) into the house.

We talked about how many kids didn’t get to go trick-or-treating and how some go hungry and then we talked about the election.

They wanted to know who I voted for and why. I told them they aren’t obligated to vote as I do or their mother. I said they need to figure out what they think is right and vote based upon that.

An educated vote is what I said they need to focus on and then I told them I didn’t want to pay for the dentist’s new house and sent them off to brush their teeth.

It was a good day and thanks to Nintendo I found the great pumpkin, but I made a point not to put the one I carved next to Mario.

I am not stupid, it is like asking me to stand next to some pro athlete. On my own I look alright, but stick me next to one of those guys and all the flaws come out. 😉

Good things happen to us all the time. We just have to look for them and remember to say thank you. I am very lucky and grateful.

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