Thursday, November 1, 2012

Life is What You Make of It

We hope everyone had a safe and fun night last night. We had a great evening...nothing hugely special or exciting, but we enjoyed it. It's is interesting to me every holiday to watch expectations for holiday grandeur and then to see how reality pans out. I remember our first Halloween after getting married. We were so excited. We decorated the house, carved Jack-o-Lanterns, and bought the good candy to pass out. We turned on our porch light of our little house and waited. Hours went by. After no trick-or-treaters we sadly pulled ourselves off the couch and were heading to go turn off the lights and blow out the pumpkin's candles when there was a knock on the door. We got excited and a little jittery and opened the door to find my sister and cousin there grinning at us. We laughed and pulled them in the house and the 4 of us sat and ate the bag of Halloween candy and watched "Something Wicked This Way Comes". It wasn't the grand Halloween we expected, but those two "trick-or-treaters" made our night wonderful. I still smile when I think about that first Halloween. Last night after handing out candy at a Trunk or Treat we decided to drive by a friend's house to see if their porch light was still on, which it was. We pulled over, hopped out and knocked on the door. We could hear scrambling and the hurried rustle of a candy bag being opened. The door was pulled open and we watched his face go from excitement, to slight disappointment, back to good humored excitement again. We were their first and only trick-or-treaters that night. This was their 2nd Halloween married, their first Halloween in our town. Our stay wasn't long, but we enjoyed visiting, laughing, and eating the bag of candy with them. It made me think of our first Halloween together and it made me glad that we stopped at their house. 

Things often don't turn out just like we imagined them. In fact, I don't know about your life, but in mine things usually don't turn out just as I imagine them. That's just life. I think the trick to it is not being disappointed in the things that didn't happen as imagined, but to focus on the good that did happen. Last night wasn't the most amazing Halloween of my life...but I enjoyed it anyway. We had the chance to visit with a few friends and we got to help out at the Trunk or Treat, and that's a fun memory we have now. 

Today's Pinstrosity isn't quite a normal one. Most of our Pinstrosities show projects that didn't turn out quite right for one reason or another. In this case...the DIY part went as imagined...the reception of the work just didn't live up to expectations. Meghan saw this picture on Pinterest and used it as her inspiration for an adorable Halloween costume for her 20-month-old daughter. 

The Original Pin
"I decided to change it a bit and I used feather boas.  I had a simple blue tulle skirt that she had picked up somewhere and decided to sew the feather boas onto it.  No problem at all... it took me all of 5 minutes to complete! I even made the back a little longer! Then we picked up some real peacock feathers at the local free zoo here in Toronto.  I planned to attach them to her hat (since its cold here) as an added accessory. I even got a mask that she could hold up to her face (its on a stick.. its a bird mask...)."

Isn't that cute? I love it. Meghan said, "Everything was going amazingly until this happened..."

The Pinstrosity
"Never did I account for the fact that she'd refuse to wear it.... Yep.... As cute as the skirt turned out this was a complete and utter FAIL!!!"

Oh that picture makes me laugh. I truly love it. It's not quite the Halloween Meghan was imagining, I'm sure. I know it's easy to let something like this appear to ruin everything (I'm a pro at this...poor Cameron has had to help mop me up off the floor after a melt down a number of times...good thing he's so patient and kind). It is quite frustrating to put a lot of work into something and not have it be appreciated as you had hoped. But don't despair Meghan....

You see this cute picture of me and my siblings all dressed up in our cute Halloween costumes?
(I'm the one dressed as a witch.)
I think that this wasn't actually Halloween. We found the costume trunk one day, got ourselves all dressed up and played together. As we grew up we each got a turn in those costumes...I was the first to wear the rabbit costume, but I think each of us got a turn as we grew up wearing that costume. It came out of the costume trunk every Halloween, Easter, and any other time we could convince mom to pull it out. My mom even received a phone call from our neighbors one day to inform her that there was a large white rabbit riding a bicycle up and down the road. On the other side of the coin...I can remember my little sister (the one dressed as the white rabbit in the picture) sitting on the ground at the trunk or treat in an adorable duck costume, crying because she didn't want to wear the costume (which everyone thought was hilarious and cute anyway). She soon was out of the costume and that was it for the night. But that duck costume got used in later years, so the hard work wasn't wasted. 

What am I trying to get at? Life is not about what you imagine it to be, life is what you make of it. Meghan, the costume you made is adorable. Save it! And the picture you took of your daughter sitting on the floor crying? Save it! Print it! Put it in your family album. I'm glad my mother and mother-in-law saved some of the crying/throwing a fit pictures. They are hilarious now. 

So as we now all get ready for the festivities left this year, just keep this thought tucked in the back of your mind: Life is what you make of it. Don't mourn the imaginings that didn't come to pass, but rather make what does happen into a good experience.

I sent Meghan a message letting her know we'd featured her submission and she sent this response and photo:

"Thanks!! Made me laugh all over again!! Just as an update, she was more than happy going out as a princess last night! Luckily I prepared and bought a backup costume for her! It was downpouring rain last night... Hence the rain jacket under her dress... But she had a blast :)"


  1. I could NOT stop laughing at that picture!! That was totally me when I was little, totally unhappy with anything my mom made that wasn't exactly how I pictured. Now that I'm a mom, I understand how ungrateful I was and how much patience my mom had. That costume is ADORABLE!!

  2. Oh no! Poor little girl! Poor Mommy!!!! I feel really bad for laughing. That photo is precious. I totally agree, you have to get a hard copy of that one. A wonderful job was done on the skirt. Maybe it will fit next year.
    I wonder two things: 1, what did the little one end up dressing up as? And 2, there is a FREE zoo in Toronto???? How do I not know this? I have a membership to the big pricey one.

    1. Ange, Meghan just sent us a picture of her daughter's second costume and we added it to the blog post.

    2. The High Park Zoo.... I guess its not a 'zoo' but my daughter LOVES it!!It has peacocks, kangaroos, buffalo etc.

  3. Oh yeah, my kids change their mind last minute too, no matter what effort was put into it or how much they loved it the day before. Thankfully we find something that works, and I try not to get frustrated, because they'll probably wear it tomorrow in some capacity, lol. Also, we always have to put costumes over coats too, because it is CHILLY the end of October here!! We take pictures before and after the coats, lol.

  4. I made a Jet Pac to go along with my grandson's Buzz Lightyear costume for last night. He REFUSED to have anything to do with the costume or the Jet Pac! "No like! No Like!" And so he wore his brand-new-just-arrived-in-the-mail-that-day Thomas the Tank Engine pajamas from his Aunt.
    See the Jet Pac here:

  5. I made a poodle skirt for my niece that was absolutely adorable (and I'm very proud of myself for how it turned out!) To match her sister's... she wore it to a school function for an hour, hated it, and refused to wear it both on halloween and last night when we went to another costume event. She ended up being a butterfly and a princess on those evenings, with old costumes from her dress up box. In the end, everything worked out, she was happy, and that's all that matters.

  6. I made fairy costumes for my daughter's second birthday party so all the girls could dress as Abby Cadabby. I passed them out and every child was happy to wear their lovely new costume - save for one. My daughter, the guest of honor, refused to wear the wings! (Then wouldn't take off the headband!) I laughed and made sure to document it. That's going in the Quite Contrary photo album with the story!


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