Oct 31, 2019

Lovin' Life 31/10/2019: Coming Around To Halloween ... Slowly.

Halloween and Valentine's Day traditionally rate at very similar levels on my radar which is barely.  As you probably already know, I embrace practically every other commercialized holiday on the Australian calendar of such days but H and V Days leave me cold.  While there are chocolates and lollies related to trick or treating, the lack of family and friends being the motive of the day is three strikes against Halloween for me.  As for Valentine's Day?  Where do I begin?  It all feels fake, showy and contrived to me.  

It's probably all because of my Australian upbringing.  In other countries, specifically in the US - celebrations for both days reach into classroom life from the early years.  There are Halloween parades and parties (though I was surprised to read in my googling for this post that there is some controversy about how US schools observe the day) while for Valentine's Day cards are given as tokens of friendship.

Being October 31 today, let's focus on Halloween.  Elements of the celebrations are slowly but surely breaking down my defences.  I'll always be a selective observer of the day but here are a few things I like about Halloween.

1.  Celebrity Halloween costumes.

Image result for lisa rinna halloween 2019
via Google images
Lisa Rinna as J Lo circa the Diddy years.  Need I say anymore?  Both Rinna and Lopez are among my favourite Hollywood celebrities.  They've both gotten better and stronger with time and their off duty media personas (via Instagram and as guests on shows like James Corden's The Late Late Show) are both likeable and relevant to me.

Image result for lisa rinna halloween 2019
via Google images

2.  Local Halloween decorations.

If there's a physical place in Sydney that can help me with my Halloween apathy, it's got to be The Tramsheds.

I love how their themed decorations work with the energy of the space while also being just a bit kitsch.

Not many houses in the local area do Halloween but those that do give it 110%.

I run past the gate of this house frequently and the residents LOVE the holidays.  Their Christmas decorations are always 11/10 but their Halloween stuff also rates a mention.  They've added a few things here and there over the weeks since this photo was taken.

3.  Neighbourhood trick or treating.

I went trick or treating with Master SSG and some buddies last year.  It wasn't as weird as I thought it would be.  Everyone who participated was respectful of the houses that weren't obviously hosting treats.  Those that were treating were very kind and welcoming.  It actually ended up being a lovely way to get to know more people in the neighbourhood.

I'm working late this year so while we won't be out, I'll be sure to leave some treats at the front gate.

How do you feel about Halloween?  Sort of engaged with it like me or a bit more passionate either way?

Oct 28, 2019

Life This Week 28/10/2019: My Favourite Book As A Child.

Image result for richard scarry best word book ever
via Google images

If it were humanly possible, seven-year-old me would have teleported myself into the highly detailed pages of Richard Scarry's picture books.  I'd skip across the pages as an honorary member of the Cat or Pig families exploring Busytown.

Image result for richard scarry best word book ever page

There was always so much to find and discover on each page, the details were both familiar but different to my everyday life.

Image result for lowly worm
via Google images
Not to mention the ongoing search for Lowly worm.  

Image result for richard scarry cars and trucks
via pinterest

The irony is not lost on me now as a veteran of Sydney's peak hour traffic but I loved the chaos of a typical Scarry street scene.  The quirky vehicles, the mishaps with delivery trucks, the knock-on effects of various things leaking and bursting.  Through it all, the residents of Busytown would just keep on smiling.  No cross words were ever uttered.  Perhaps we could take a leaf out of Busytown's book?  No pun intended....
Image result for richard scarry best counting book ever
via Amazon
Master SSG's favourite Scarry, unsurprisingly, is the 'Best Counting Book Ever'.

Image result for richard scarry best counting book ever
via Google images

I remember many evenings sitting down to explore and count as we turned the pages.

While the basic concepts and constructs of the world of Busytown are timeless, the text and illustrations have moved with the times by reflecting the more equal presence of men and women in what were previously very gender-specific roles and occupations.

via Upworthy
Here's a fascinating article about this if you're interested.

Were or are you a fan of Busytown too?


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