Halloween Blogfest: Jessy Ferguson

The Adventures of Halloween

Halloween is a special event in my Louisiana neighborhood, which consists of only two streets– East and West Hollow. If you start and end in front of my house, you’ll have walked a mile. For the past 20 years, ever since we’ve lived here, children have come from miles around to trick or treat our homes. With the help of our neighborhood husbands, parents park their cars on two vacant lots at the entrance–no cars allowed inside on Halloween night–and everyone sets out on foot. For two hours, our two streets are alive with shrieks and giggles and blinking lights. Parents have as much fun as the kids, and I’ve suspected some make it a huge family affair with aunts, uncles, grandmas and papaws trailing after the children.

The oldest trick or treater I’ve met looked to be twenty something. He had his girlfriend with him. The youngest goblin was in diapers, wrapped in her teenage daddy’s arms. I’ve handed out Hershey’s kisses and Blow-Pops to pretty little ballerinas, skinny skeletons, a green Hulk, cute cowboys, Pippi Longstocking and a young man wrapped in gold chains.

“What are you?” I asked.

He held out his arms and answered, “A pimp, of course.” He ran off yelling, “Mom, I got chocolate!”

Seeing the elaborate costumes of today make me remember my childhood and my own trick or treat adventures. I loved picking up yellow ducks to win a prize at my school’s Halloween carnival and often got a sticky face from gnawing candy apples. I used to make my own mask by cutting and decorating a brown paper bag. A friend of mine wrapped himself from head to toe in toilet paper. He looked pretty creepy stumbling down our dirt road with the loose ends of Charmin blowing in the breeze.

Halloween costumes from the 50s and 60s were quite different from the flashy attire sold in stores today. Now tell the truth, how many of you have actually worn that French Maid outfit? Leave a comment and I’ll draw a winner who’ll receive a mask and beads–just in time for Mardi Gras. Now there’s a holiday that can be just as fun as Halloween!

TheLastDaughter_w7831_750Jessica Ferguson is the author of The Last Daughter, a romantic suspense published by The Wild Rose Press. Her short story If You Believe will release Oct. 1st by Helping Hands Press. Jess is co-editor of Swamp Lily Review, A Journal of Louisiana Literature & Arts and a staff writer for Southern Writers Magazine. She is the author of one Silhouette Romance, The Groom Wore Blue Suede Shoes, writing as Jessica Travis. Jess worked as assistant editor/writer/photographer for The Times of Southwest Louisiana, and her work has appeared in magazines and newspapers in Louisiana and Texas.
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  1. Cute post, Jess. I’m usually out on Halloween. I haven’t been home for trick or treaters for years!

    • Kathy, thanks so much for popping over. I’m not surprised you’re never home for the ghosts and goblins. You’re one busy lady! When do you write?

  2. Hey, Jessica!

    Halloween is an absolute favorite of mine. It makes me remember the magical times of my childhood. They were few and far between, but Halloween was always the best. I try to make it memorable for my own children. Hoping to one day experience a Louisiana Halloween!

    Excellent post, my friend!

    • Can’t say Halloween is my favorite, Kimmie. I get spooked easily. In fact, last night I saw a little crack in the blinds, and I would have sworn someone was looking in at me. Ooooohhhh, how I hate looking into the darkness! Thanks for leaving a comment!

  3. Some of my fondest childhood memories came as a result of trick or treating. My sister and I would go from door to door with our jack-o-lantern candy baskets. We’d get home and spread all our candy on the bed. Then we began the trading process. I don’t celebrate Halloween that much now, but boy do I miss those days.

    • What a sweet story, Jeuron. My brother is 7 years younger than I am so we didn’t Trick of Treat together. And I know we’d have had trouble trading. We’d both want the chocolate! Thanks for leaving a comment.

  4. Teresa Bailey says:

    Hi there lady. Loved your blog. I grew up in the country and we had maybe 10 houses around and what you have shared is what I remember about Halloween; neighborhood parties, with games and campfires. I never dressed as a French Maid or a Pimp for that matter. My most SUCESSful costume was a Hobo; pretty ironic right!! Love reading everything you write. Take care friend.

    • I cannot picture you a hobo, Teresa. ๐Ÿ™‚ I’ll bet you were a pretty one though. Thanks for leaving a comment. I can always depend on you.

  5. I love Halloween…and much more so as an adult. What a great idea to have a block party!

  6. Yep, I’ve worn a French maid outfit…just not for Halloween. LOL! TMI, right? Last night we went out to eat while the two churches in out neighborhood hosted Trunk-or-Treats and filled the street with goblins, ghosties, and pirates. I didn’t see a pimp. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  7. Great post! I used to love Halloween but it’s lost some of its spooky appeal as I’ve grown older. We don’t receive kids trick or treating and I felt sure we would our first year here because we live in an older established neighborhood. Nada. I do think it’s a good thing that churches and communities are having events. My own granddaughters, one as Doc McStuffin, the other as Jessie from Toy Story, went to the zoo Saturday, the aquarium Sunday, and a friendly neighborhood last night. They loved it.

    My own costumes . . . I can’t really remember but I know none were store bought. If I was lucky I got a Lone Ranger mask at Wacker’s. My brother and I were probably hobo’s and ghosts.

    The last year I went trick or treating was when my best friend and I were thirteen. She had a 9 month old sister and we wrapped her up in a sheet or something and went our knocking on doors. Baby Sarah Jill got loads of candy, popcorn balls, candied apples, and real apples for us. However, one older man who probably didn’t have a single piece of candy in his home gave us a watermelon. We had to take turns carrying Sarah Jill and the melon. We thought we were lucky but the melon turned out to be rotten.

  8. amy bowens says:

    I love Halloween time! My family and I usually all dress up in something that ties into one another’s costume. This year my son and husband were fisherman, my daughter was a shark, and I was the bait (wiggly worm). We had a great time going door to door but after only 45 mins my kids were beat (or they were ready for candy)Loved reading about your Halloween story, it’s nice hearing others special stories. And yes, I was actually a French Maid in my younger day I was around 19 and I had a blast. Now though I don’t think I would ever have the courage to wear something that naughty again! Have a great day!

    • Amy, that’s hilarious! Love the idea of tying the costumes together: fisherman, shark and bait That belongs in a book! At the very least, an article or something. ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. Hi Jess,
    Great post on Halloween — it’s always entertaining to see what the kids in our neighborhood choose as costumes… my own daughter wanted a blond wig but wanted to be a vampire, so became a “princess vampire.” I love your book cover for The Last Daughter. Congrats from a fellow guppy!

  10. Halloween was a bust this year, Jess. I couldn’t figure out why there were so few kids. Then a neighbor brought her three-year-old daughter over, and I stepped out on our front porch. It was raining! That answered my question. We usually have about 40 kids. Last night’s storm kept about half of them at home. Hope if was fun for you!

  11. I was just telling Mom how I missed being seeing costumed kids around the neighborhood on Halloween. But the area where I grew up is shifting, and it isn’t quite safe for little ones anymore. Mom got “tricked” two years in a row. So sad.

    I like your story much better!

  12. Interesting experiences

    bn100candg at hotmail dot com

  13. Ashley F. says:

    wow great story, and usually the only things I buy in the costume department is accessories. And join the family going to Fall fest

  14. Jess, I love what you wrote. It reminds me of this place in Portland, Oregon, where at Christmas time they have all the houses lite up. When they buy a house on that street they have to sign an agreement that they will put Christmas lights out. The name of the place is gone from my mind right now but it’s such a kewl thing to observe. And just like your neighborhood, no cars are allowed down it during the times of night that everyone is walking around it.

    • Sounds fun, Kristena. I’m afraid I couldn’t buy a house in that neighborhood though. ๐Ÿ™‚ We run hot and cold on decorating for Christmas. One year I went overboard; the next year I didn’t have anything but a wooden Santa stuck in a flower pot. ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks for stopping by.

  15. I just put all the names in a “hat” and drew. The winner of the mask and beads is Zan Marie. Thanks everyone for leaving a comment. I appreciate it!

  16. Beverly Martin says:

    Jess, I remember Halloween as being a much quieter time in our neighborhood. Back then, we looked forward to the goodies we would receive. We knew who made candied popcorn, who gave apples, one man always gave money. Then we weren’t afraid to eat the candy without first having it xrayed somewhere to be sure there was nothing harmful hidden in the apples. That was Kentucky.

    Where we live now, we don’t have any ‘spooks’ because of Trunk or Treat at the various churches. Children are safer, but I miss seeing all the cute costumes. I still love the homemade costumes best.

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