Monday, November 17, 2008

Trick or Treating, Moscow-Style


I'm finally getting around to finishing up my post about Halloween... Figured I should do so since it's almost Thanksgiving and the Christmas (New Year's) decorations are popping up in the city...


This year we were so happy to join our friends who live at the US Embassy for Halloween. The weather was also unseasonably warm, a real gift! You can't really tell it from the one poor photo of Katya that came out, but she was a spy. On the territory of the US Embassy. The pink coat kind of spoiled her "incognito" apparel... Natalia was a Greek goddess princess (her words).  My favorite homemade costume? An ipod with siblings who were the headphones.


Many of the home were decorated with jack-o-lanterns and orange lights; it was nice since there aren't Halloween decorations anywhere else in the city. The White House and one of the Seven Sisters skyscrapers looked so pretty in the night sky. It sure is different from the suburban backdrop of my childhood trick-or-treating!


As much as the girls enjoyed trick-or-treating, they most enjoyed just hanging out with our new friends and handing OUT the candy to kids who rang the doorbell.


The girls and I were also pretty excited by all the American candies that can't be purchased in Russia: Reese's Peanut Butter Cups; Whoppers; Jujubees; York Peppermint Patties; Nerds... After that first night, however, they've pretty much forgotten about their stashes. I've hidden it all VERY well and will dole it out from time to time...

The next morning we met up with friends and another family that found me through this blog at a local diner for a Halloween breakfast. That mom even brought all kinds of favors and activities for the kids. Thanks, L~!

Two days later an American classmate of Katya's threw a party that was creative and splendid -- except for Natalia's massive meltdown... I had to literally carry her out of there, wishing I could have fallen through cracks in the floor that never appeared. Talk about a parenting low... She felt so left-out and jealous and simply LOST IT. 

I can only imagine what the other parents thought as I chased her through the living room and carried her out -- while she flailed wildly kicking and screaming, shouting that she hated me and that she wished the other kids were dead. 

All in the spirit of "keeping it real," people. It was a horrible day... And not a good way to kick off our school vacation full of family togetherness... 

On a positive note, though, it lead to a lot of good chances to practice sanctions and to work on behavior... And she ended up having a very good week overall.

11 comments:

Rachael said...

Glad you had a nice night trick-or-treating! We had really mild (as in no coats) weather too. I kept thinking about you guys trick-or-treating in snowsuits at the Embassy, so I'm glad that wasn't the case!

Bummer about the meltdown.

Tina in CT said...

Look forward to when Natalia outgrows her temper outbursts. One day, she'll have to deal with her own child.

Susan said...

oh, the post halloween (sugar high) blues.

Christine said...

How cool that you found someone through your blog. I love the star pumpkin---- neat idea. I didn't think you could get pumpkins in Russia.

Tami said...

That's awesome that you were able to go trick-or-treating! What a treat!
Sorry about the meltdown. Virtual ((hugs)) are all I can offer. Glad the weekend got better.

Carey and Norman said...

Glad you had a nice Halloween. I can imagine it is much different celebrating overseas.

As for the meltdown, I'm just glad that it happens to all of us and is "normal." My heart goes out to other families when I see it happen to them in public as we've all been there/done that.

Anonymous said...

I am sorry to hear about Natalia behavior.
I guess, you can take a credit on how well you handled the situation, or learn the trick or two from my experience years ago.
We were shopping with friend of mine from work and her two little children ages 8 and 4. In the middle of our shopping, in the middle of large grocery store, something happened, and little boy got very angry. He threw himself on the floor right in front of his mother and started screaming and beating the floor with his arms and legs. His mother calmly stepped over him and motioned me to continue shopping. I said: "You are not going to leave him here alone on the floor?". She said:" Yes I will! I am not going to watch him throwing temper tantrum, I have seen enough of them".
I will never forget the calmness and determination with which she stepped over screaming kid and went on with what had to be done. It was a sight to behold!
Needles to say, he grew out of it.
Olga

Anonymous said...

Rachael,
check out your entry on pirozhky. I put there a reference to a good Russian cookbook written in English and by American author.
Olga

MamaPoRuski said...

Don't feel too bad, I'm sure it has happened to them too! Too much foreign sugar LOL! Great post even if late!

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Annie said...

Wow - Natalia and Anastasia ought to go into business! I was going to post about Anastasia's reaction to NOT being the "Birthday" person last week. She would have destroyed Zhen's birthday if she could have. Came close. I had a great [awful] photo of her glowering face and threatening posture, but her loving brother Ilya got hold of my camera and erased it (which I thought so touchingly brotherly that I couldn't be cross).

Isn't it amazing how such apparently sweet and adorable little girls can turn into monsters?