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October

31st

Alice’s Diary — Monster Mash

Dear Diary,

Today brought a Cullen first: Halloween!

We have never celebrated Halloween before – at least, not in this life. But with Renesmee here, and Emmett to goad her … let’s just say there would be trick-or-treating whether we liked it or not.

Of course, Ness would never eat candy; that’s what our Quiluete friends are for! I swear, Seth was so disappointed when Leah told him he was too old (and way too tall) to trick-or-treat this year. He went rambling on about how he wanted to be a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle … I had no idea what that was, but the next day, Ness had charmed me into agreeing to make “poor Seth” a costume – and hosting a small get-together on Halloween.

So I spent a few days cutting, draping, and sewing a costume for Seth as well as one for Renesmee. We had decided that Belle from Beauty and the Beast would be the inspiration for her costume, since she already has the wavy dark hair anyway, and she also has a BEAST!

That’s right – Jacob was taking her trick-or-treating. Not as a wolf, obviously … too bad, but that would never fly! Instead, he, Edward, and Bella were escorting her around a safe residential area in Forks.

Here’s where it gets complicated: Edward and Bella couldn’t be seen with Ness. So far, we’ve managed to avoid anyone outside the “circle of trust” getting a glimpse of her, and we figured it was best if nobody knew there was a little girl living with the Cullens right now. So Jacob would be the only adult any humans could see. Well, Quil too, since he was taking Claire out with them.

That left the rest of us hanging out at home – which was liberally covered in fake cobwebs, extremely realistic giant spiders (I had some concerns about Emmett when I noticed him staring at those), and jack-o-lanterns carved by Emmett, Jacob, Renesmee, Bella, and Seth.

Although it was a “casual” party (defined by me as a party with a guest list under 100), there was one requirement: costumes! Because once they had started talking about it, I sort of got into it myself. It’s like fashion in a way … kind of …

So Rosalie was dressed as a blond Jessica Rabbit, re-using that red Monique Lhullier dress I’d gotten her, and drawing constant stares from the rest of the wolfpack. Emmett was cheerfully threatening everyone he caught looking at her, which was less intimidating than usual since he wore a Roger Rabbit costume to match his wife. Esme looked lovely dressed as Giselle from Enchanted, while Carlisle gallantly portrayed the generic Prince Charming … or Ken … or whoever.

Turns out little miss “I don’t like attention” Bella loves Halloween – hiding herself inside a costume is right up her alley! Only problem was, she wanted to dress up as a character from a book. I know, right? So very Bella. Emmett managed to convince her that nobody would recognize an Elizabeth Bennett costume and would just think it was Bella all dressed up – perfect argument to change her mind. But she still wouldn’t agree to dress up as Neytiri, or Slave Leia, or Lady Gaga. Finally I had to ask her if there was anything she’d agree to wear (in a very polite, understanding tone of voice, of course).

Well, turns out Bella always wanted to be Jasmine. Surprising – since she was such a bookworm I could see her identifying more with Belle, but there you go. This meant Edward had to be Aladdin. And if you think that was a walk in the park, you’re dead wrong. I had to appeal to his love for Renesmee to finally convince him. And he looks adorable with his red fez and bronze-painted chest!

Now, I know what you’re wondering. What about me and Jazz? Well, I’ve saved the best for last! After being dragged to the theater by Emmett, I had actually found myself enjoying the movie Kick-Ass. So I decided to use my petite stature to my advantage and dress up like HitGirl, while Jasper was destined to wear the lime green Kick-Ass costume. We looked fantastic, if I do say so myself!

Apparently trick-or-treating starts early, so Jacob, Ness, Edward and Bella left around 5 PM. Esme’s cupcakes were ready around 5:30, and I started the Halloween playlist soon after.

Before I tell you how everyone else dressed up, I want to take a minute to tell you what an amazing job we did on decorations. The Wall of Fame was my brilliant idea – as soon as each guest, couple, or group entered, they would pose in front of a cemetery backdrop painted by Esme, get their picture snapped, and then we’d post the pics on the magnet board next to the backdrop. It was such a great idea, I swear, I impress myself sometimes! The fog machine made it even more awesome and creepy.

So that was pretty much the first things the guests saw when they entered, and then they were led into the darkened living room, where the food was disguised as body parts, internal organs, etc. I’d found some “blood-spattered” throw pillows to place on the couches, and the music was full of creepy movie sound effects to make the guests jump every time the noise-sensitive lights flickered. (Great touch suggested by Emmett, the king of electronics! He saw it in one of his magazines. One of the ones that were appropriate to leave lying around the house, that is …)

Okay, so then the living room had a photo booth set up at one end, with a huge box of props inside, including severed (fake) limbs, silly hats, wigs, and “bloody” fake weapons. I wanted a separate photo booth because that way everyone could take a variety of pictures, even if they didn’t want to pose for a camera-wielding Cullen. The photo booth was a more expensive model that allowed the users to select the background for each photo from a pre-set gallery of images that Edward had hacked into and added a few more (mostly Disney ones for Ness and Claire, but some bona fide creepy ones too).

The finishing touch was the steaming bowl of blood punch. It was made of pomegranate juice, Hawaiian Punch, and a variety of other sickly-sweet liquids that we hoped the humans would enjoy, and of course it was chilled, but the dry ice made it look like it was steaming! So cool. This was Rose’s idea, just to spite the guys who like to call us “leeches” – look who’s drinking blood now! A bit immature, I’ll grant you, but it looked pretty neat.

Then, for the (two) kids, we had a big cauldron of apple cider with floating “shrunken heads” (dried apples) that Jasper planned to make less scary and more funny using his special talent, which was why he was stationed over there the whole night.

So that’s what the decorations and setup looked like. Anyway, the guests began to arrive around 6:00, with Emily and Sam in the lead. I was pretty shocked to see Emily dressed as Lara Croft in shorts, a form-fitting sleeveless turtleneck, and some realistic-looking water guns – but good for her! She looked great. Sam, at first glance, didn’t appear to even be in costume – but he was quick to explain that he was Sherlock Holmes, and he pulled out a pipe to prove it. I would have made him dress as a matching character (although come to think of it, did Lara Croft really have a leading man?), but it was Emily’s business and none of mine!

Seth dragged Leah in next, all excited and grateful in his Ninja Turtle costume. Leah looked a lot less excited to be wearing her costume – boring old scrubs. She hadn’t even doused them in fake blood or anything. Well, I could improve on that … but would she let me? I resolved to let her relax a bit first, and then try to spill some of the blood punch on her scrub top.

Embry and Colin sauntered in a few minutes later, looking very proud of themselves. Embry had a tank top pulled up and taped to his pecs, which seemed odd to me, until he loudly proclaimed that he was “The Situation” from Jersey Shore. That explained my confusion – I never got within ten miles of those awful shows!

Colin, on the other hand, was Jake Sully from Avatar. But instead of buying the costume … oh, I just realized that these guys don’t really have a lot of money. Crap, I should have thought of that before insisting on a costume party! Anyway, I guess that’s why Colin had painted himself blue instead of buying the costume like a normal person. He did a pretty good job though.

As we impatiently waited for the trick-or-treaters to return, Billy, Charlie and Sue showed up. I couldn’t help but crack up when Billy rolled in – he had dressed as Fred Flintstone, and turned his wheelchair into a Flintstone-mobile. It was hilarious! He totally knew it, too – he had a huge, smug grin on his face in the Wall of Fame pic.

Charlie didn’t seem to share Bella’s love for costumes, or maybe it was just the money issue again. Either way, he looked disdainful in his baseball jersey and jeans as he scanned the room full of costumed guests. But Sue had dressed as a cheerleader – no, I’m not kidding – to match him, and she looked positively adorable! It could only have been improved with a blond ponytail wig, but whatever.

Kim and Jared came in next, looking all cute dressed as a sexy bumblebee (Kim) and a beekeeper (Jared). They’re a cute couple, even if Kim is super shy around us still. I guess she hasn’t been exposed to us enough to realize that we’re just like anyone else. … HA!!! Can’t even write that with a straight face! Still, you know what I mean.

Quil, Claire, Jacob, Edward, Bella and Renesmee finally returned to join us. I thought Quil was very sweet to dress up as Peter Pan to Claire’s Tinkerbell, despite the howls of laughter that greeted him, and the many, many insults on his green tights. And Jacob was in no position to make fun of Quil, with his authentic Beast costume, topped with the classic cartoon Beast mask.

Finally, Paul and Rachel decided to show up, with smirks on their faces and their hair all disheveled. I saw Jacob’s masked head turn in their direction, and then he very pointedly ignored their presence for the rest of the night. Can’t say I blame him, either – they were all over each other, like … well, like Rosalie and Emmett, actually! Oh, they came dressed as a pimp and … you know … one of his employees. Blech.

Well, once everybody was here, and the wolves had decimated about half of the candy and baked goods, it was time for the costume contest. Cards were passed around for confidential voting, and the votes were collected and tallied by Carlisle/ Prince Ken or whoever.

Third place went to Emily for Lara Croft, which made me happy, because she really is a nice girl. And I have a feeling Renesmee will be spending a lot of time with her in the future, so I’d like her to be our friend too. She blushed and looked pleased to accept her prize of an iPod Shuffle. (Perfectly appropriate for third-place prize, no matter what Bella says!)

Seth Clearwater took second-place for his Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle costume, and he just about shattered our eardrums with his victory cries! He was so cute, he made an acceptance speech and thanked me for my hard work – I grinned like a loon the rest of the night! He seemed to love the Nintendo DS and games that he was awarded, judging by the fact that he was immobile on the couch, staring at the tiny screen for the rest of the party.

And finally, in first place … a tie! Colin and Billy had the most votes for their costumes. Billy’s laughter made Charlie and Jacob laugh with him, and I joined in too – it was so nice to see him having fun with us again. Colin was just about speechless with excitement when we revealed their prizes: a Nintendo Wii. For each of them. (We had an extra one that was meant to be Jacob’s Christmas gift, but there was plenty of time to replace it.)

The photo booth got quite a lot of use – the computer stored all of the photos after printing a copy out each time, and we got a kick out of them when our guests had left. There was one photo strip in which Charlie smooched Sue, which I intended to hold on to in case wedding bells ever rang out for them.

Overall, I’d say the evening was a success. Dancing, photos, costumes, and the ever-present wet dog smell … okay, so it wasn’t perfect, but it was still a total blast!

I’m going to have to mark Halloween on next year’s calendar. I wonder if November 1st is too early to start planning for it?

XOXO Aiice