2020: How Do We Halloween?

Oh, spooky season. How I love thee.

Here we are, it’s two days before Halloween and I…do not have a costume yet.

I’m hosting a small virtual Halloween party on Saturday — complete with a DJ 🙂 — and yet, I am costume-less.

Last year! 2019!

A certain gentleman and I have spent the past week or so trying to come up with an idea, and the best one we have, is dressing like we’re from the 1990’s.

I think I’ve scrolled through probably close to 1000 vintage photos on Google images of 90’s era couples and parties and fashion and whatnot. And while I’ve seen probably enough grunge tee’s, baggy jeans and Doc Martens to last me a lifetime, I have to admit: I find myself longing for those “simpler” days.

A time when the country wasn’t being ripped apart at the seams by an election that has neighbor hating neighbor, fathers against sons, and blanket hostility covering the interactions between strangers.

A time when the worst influence on young people was the MTV’s TRL (Total Request Live), and snacks consisted of Dunkaroos, Gushers and Combos, and people didn’t even know — or care — what “gluten” or GMOs were.

A time when kids played outside, or in the woods. Where cell phones didn’t exist — other than Zack Morris’ brick phone. Where 9/11 was an unthinkable horror, family dinners were a daily norm, and kids were safe to ride their bikes in the neighborhood.

What a time to be alive.

I’ve flipped through my own 90’s photos — my childhood years with birthday parties, Christmas Eve’s, soccer games, and time backstage from my years as a child actor. And again, I find myself wistful to that era of innocence.

A lot of life has been lived between then and now. A lot of joy. A lot of growth — much of which coming from pain, and trials — ulcerative colitis, anorexia, my mom’s stroke. Powerful “teachers” that taught me important lessons, albeit the hard way.

But it’s funny, isn’t it. What the simple act of looking back can do? I mean, I can’t remember the last time I purposefully sought out photos and memories from the 90’s – or from the past. Because, though it may be fun to look back and laugh at the fashions, and maybe get a little nostalgic for the times gone by, it is exactly that: time gone by.

It was good to us then. It taught us lessons. But we should now appropriately put it to rest, in it’s rightful place — not idolized, not trivialized, not disregarded, just respected for what it was.

We are here, in the now.

And though the “highlight reels” we see memorialized can seem idealistic, every time had its challenges and obstacles. Just like today.

Right now, it can feel pretty overwhelming, and frankly, it’s easy to just blanket 2020 as a “dumpster fire.” To just generalize this time during the pandemic as the “lost year” when everything went to pot.

But I think if we were to look closely, we can find some good that came out of this time. Lessons that, we’re literally in the middle of learning the hard way. And it will only be thirty years down the road, when we’ll be looking back and realize all those good times that came out of 2020. (Boy, can you imagine the “2020” Halloween costumes that kids will be doing in 2050?)

I know personally, I’ve strengthened important relationships in my life. New ones have bloomed. I’ve realized the importance of family, and communication. I’ve recognized my own strength to endure adversity. And found a new dependence and reliance on God. Lessons that won’t necessarily make the quick highlight overview of 2020.

But whether it’s 1990 or 2020…what we have is today. We have right now. And if we spend it dwelling on things in the past — things that we cannot change, that we can clench in regret, or cherish in glee — we can miss out on the right now. On the precious gift of today, that is a humongous blessing. Because look around — take an inventory of everything that is good, and beautiful, and full of love and joy, right now. Don’t miss it, by dwelling on the past…or conversely, in worry for the future.

“Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself.” Matthew 6:34

Obviously, with the election looming, and with the repercussions of a shut down economy, and a nation trying to recover and move forward, and with rising COVID cases, we can also spend our precious time in anxiety about the days to come. We can waste these present moments in worry, or fear, or crippling toil trying to micromanage things that are out of our control.

God’s plan for our lives is good, and perfect, and perfectly timed. We can trust that. He loves us, and is with us in this moment, and was yesterday, and will be tomorrow. It is our job and joy to take that blessing and simply place our trust in Him. To live our lives in response to His love. In response to His gift of now, and all the immense blessings that we can so often overlook or take for granted.

So. With all that being said…what am I going to do for Halloween? After all this nostalgic thinking, I think I’ve spent enough time in the 90’s. My proverbial clock has struck midnight. I think I’ll just be a pumpkin.

“This is what the Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life.” Ez 37:5


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100 responses to “2020: How Do We Halloween?”

      • You are welcome. Your blog is wonderful and beautiful and has a lot of matters related to health, food, beauty and healthy eating. These are good things for every person who wants to feel that the Creator loves all people and wants them good in this world and the hereafter I am again, but you are wonderful and beautiful

      • Oh gosh that’s so kind of you go say!! Yes! The Creator is so good to us!! Hugs and love xox

  1. Wonderful photos, Caralyn! Your so cute in the cheerleader outfit. I’ve had the same thought. My son and daughter are adults these days, but if they were still children, I would lean toward coming up with alternative. It’s just too dangerous this year. Perhaps next year will be different, God willing. Stay safe! ❤️🙏🏻

    • Thanks so much John! Awww that’s kind of you to say. That was such a fun costume! I always wanted to be a cheerleader growing up! Yeah you’re right. Too great a risk! Hugs and love xox

  2. First let me say as a generation who gave the world platform heels and flared trousers, I wish my fashion Walk of Shame, only involved nineties fashion. Thing is I look back at that era and cannot believe we ever let ourselves be dragged into that trend. I have no problem looking back on my punk fashion or my nineties stuff, but seventies fashion, having assessed it over several decades, I have decided, “Never Again.”

    • Hahah you’re too funny about the fashion! You’ll get a kick out of this – we actually just got our costumes – we’re going to be disco 70’s!!!! Hahahahaha I guess after this Halloween we can say never again! Heheh thanks so much for stopping by! Hugs and love xox

  3. A 2020 Halloween costume… ha ha, a big, green, spikey, Covid.

    Yes, nostalgia. Christmas comes to mind, for me…

    Yes, respected for what it was, and, we are here, in the now…

    With hope and prayerful anticipation

    • Thank you so much David! Ooh a toga! Hahah and sandals too! Now that’s an easy costume! Thanks for the idea! Hugs and love xox

      • “I’ll just be a pumpkin.” Lol! 🙂 That was clever. I’m a 90s kid, too. It is weird/funny/nostalgic to look back. 2020 has been challenging but I can’t think of a time I’ve ever yearned more for heaven and to live in God’s eternal presence. Is that a good thing? I think so!
        Amen, come Lord Jesus.
        I always look forward to your posts, Caralyn.

      • Hahah good! I’m glad you got my pumpkin joke! I didn’t know how that would “read” – so thanks for that 🙂 hehe I agree – it’s a great thing!! Come Lord Jesus, indeed. Thanks for all your kind words, Hannah. Means a lot! Hugs and love xox

    • Hahaha oh yes – there will certainly be a leisure suit. And a platinum blond wig for me! Hahahah Hugs and love xox

  4. The Lone Ranger probably ought to steal the show this year, but then again his mask is all wrong.

    At my high school band tenth reunion I wore my band tux, but I was the only one who still could or did.

    The dress-up routine turned serious after my year in Germany in graduate school. Before Germany, I basically dressed like a hippy with full beard and shoulder-length hair. After Germany, I trimmed the bear, cut the hair, and wore a sport-jacket with tie to class. My new custom was so well received that I dressed like German professor the rest of my government career. However, I got rid of the beard.

    By the 1990s, we had turned Halloween over to our kids–I posted photos of them playing dress-up last week in my newsletter. In our household, the 1990s were super stressful, but the kid’s photos do brighten up the memories. My kids look like junior-sized Three Musketeers in all their photos from that period.

    Keep safe.

    • Haha you’re too funny Stephen. That’s impressive that you could still fit! Your hippie costume sounds amazing! I love your zeal for costumes! I’m inspired! Thanks for stopping by! Hugs and love xox

  5. Caralyn you just keep addressing what is important while sharing a little more of yourself. God’s plans are always what is loving and best although our understanding may take a while. But what a privilege- to take time to get closer to the only God there is! Thanks. I continue to be impressed and blessed by you. John

    • Oh gosh thank you John for such a generous compliment. You’re right – Hid plans are always loving. I so agree! Hugs and love xox

  6. Wow beautiful written as always Caralyn. I love your heart and your perspective. Happy for you! So happy you got to see your family and you have strong relationships in your life. 🥺🥰 God is good. Can’t wait to continue following along your journey. Sending you a virtual hug 💛xoxo Laura

  7. Thank you for this. I am not political mean I vote but I am not political & yet I’ve found myself gripped with anexity these last few days over the election. Basically because both sides say if their party doesn’t win the world is over 🤦‍♀️
    I need a reminder that God is in control and he has the plan.

    • Thank you Lindsey. I feel you there. It’s definitely an anxiety inducing time. Amen. He is in control! Hugs and love xox

  8. How odd (for me) that you write tonight about nostalgia for times past. This past week had me thinking back to times that were much more carefree, more successful, and more filled with hope. Yes, there’s hope for eternity and hope that God walks with us…the sure hope of faith. But hope for earthly things is dwindling; the election, violence, COVID…

    Still, I have Julie – we just got back from dinner. Hillary finished her internship and applied for a job where she interned – they had asked several times if she was going to apply there. Things with our daughter in Columbus are, well, she’s going through a very hard time, but she’s coping well and calls us daily for advice and support. That’s huge to me! I was done with my dad by junior high.

    I have friends that I stay in touch with. A couple from St. Augustine will be here in a few weeks, and they’ve invited us to stay with them sometime back at their home. I have a great church, great pastors. I value your blog and your friendship. My job is going well. On balance, things are good.

    Yesterday still beckons, but today the sun rose.

    • Hey Jeff! Oh my gosh what timing! You’re right about that – with all the waves crashing around us currently, it’s hard to hold onto hope and keep our eyes fixed on the beauty of eternity. But you’ve said it : we have so many blessings around us. Family. Friends. A church community. Today the sun rose. Wow I love that. I LOVE how you put that. Thanks so much Jeff for blessing me with this powerful perspective. Big hugs to you and your girls xox

    • Thank you so much Kenneth!! Yes. I am very grateful for such a wonderful man in my life 🙂 have a great night! Hugs and love xox

      • Goes to show you never know what’s ahead of you (Love wise). met my one and only love & best friend @ 27yrs, she is now my wife of 30yrs. True love eh!xx

      • You’re so right about that. Oh my gosh wow! 30 years – that’s so beautiful and really something to celebrate! Hugs and love xox

    • Awww that’s so great, Paula! It was a great decade!! Have a wonderful weekend and Happy Halloween! Thanks for stopping by! Hugs and love xox

  9. I plan to wear my normal attire that I’ve worn on any given occasion before/through 2020 and call it “Normal”.

    • Hahaha too funny Matt! I like the “normal” approach! Thanks for stopping by! Hugs and love xox

  10. People got pretty heated over politics in the 90s too, although it wasn’t quite as bad as it is now. Maybe I just saw it more as a conservative attending a large liberal public university.

    • Hi Greg – thanks for sharing that. Yeah I’m sure there were heated politics during the Bush/Clinton eras too. Ugh – politics! Hugs and love xox

  11. We in the big world out here are very much affected by what a handful of Americans decide at the polls, as you are in a way electing a world president. It does affect us one way or another. All I can say is that the current POTUS was shown rather unmistakably to an old prophet, one more accurate than Nostradamus, that lived in the arid northwest of South Africa a century ago. His accuracy stands at around 99% and includes WWII, Chernobil, Lady Di, the current problems with racism and Islamic trouble in Europe, etc. Perhaps it is time for Christianity to exchange their opinion for how God sees things, to seek His counsel and not to even have an own opinion. As God is superior.

    We non-Anglophone Christians could never figure out why Halloween, a pagan tradition, is kept alive by Christianity. WE don’t celebrate it, it isn’t in our culture and, like Christmas, it’s not in our Bibles. Does it please God, does it really aim to honour Him? Maybe someone would care to educate us on Halloween and why Christians observe it.

    Things blow over from America – we even have Valentine’s Day and Blackfriday now; the black population deluded enough to think it has to do with slavery; so they run to the stores and indebt themselves while they don’t know why, then become indebted. It is sad that media hype can cause much hardship in this way.

    • Wow I have never looked it that wow. My goodness. Thank you for this powerful perspective. And thanks for sharing that about Halloween. I personally think that if you just are having fun dressing up in silly costumes and greeting neighbors with candy, there’s no harm in that. Now when Halloween is taken in the vein of darkness, witchcraft, evil spirits etc – that is highly problematic and to be avoided at all costs. But I celebrate the light hearted fun of dress up! 🙂 Hugs and love xox

      • Gosh, the late teen – young adult clan in our city really dress up gross and it reflects everything Christ is not. The first time I saw it, about a decade ago, I was really shocked. But then they maybe go overboard as it is really a new thing here. It’s just sad to them indulge in gory stuff.

      • I will definitely check out that verse!! Thanks for passing it along! You too – happy Friday! 🙂 Hugs and love xox

  12. 2020 has not been that great – definitely missing the 90’s right now, too. I especially loved the 90’s shows like “Friends.” Your verse from Matthew reminded me of this one from James:

    “Now listen, you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.’ Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead, you ought to say, ‘If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.’” (James 4:13-15).

    This year has been a humbling reminder that ultimately, we don’t have any control – God does. And now is a time that we definitely can’t plan ahead!

    Hope you have a fun and safe Halloween 🙂

    – Katie

    • Thanks for sharing that. Oh gosh – I am right there with you! I saw a “Friends” sweatshirt at urban outfitters yesterday and had a moment of wistfulness. Thanks Katie for this beautiful reflection. Amen – God is in control!! Hugs and love xox

  13. Caralyn, you are so wise beyond your years. I am jealous of your wisdom and intelligence but also understand that you had to live through some hard life lessons to get here. Thank you for another great post and I hope you and your ‘certain gentleman” enjoy halloween :D.

    • Oh gosh Kara, you are too kind. Thank you so much. Yes – definitely lessons I’ve had to learn the very very hard way. Haha oh yes! We will! We ended up going with 70’s disco fever! I’ll list photos on my Instagram!! 🙂 have a wonderful weekend!!! Hugs and love xox

    • Thank you Nihao!! Yes! I will share all about the party on my Instagram and recap on here too! 😉 Hugs and love xox

  14. I had a really good giggle at the thought of the 90’s being vintage. Thank you for beginning my day with this thought as I had to realize that the 90’s are now vintage and the 70’s are becoming antique. One day the quilts I make will be considered vintage and antique and it will be in my lifetime.
    God has a big sense of humor.

    • Hi Teri! Hahah I know me too! As someone who grew up in the 90s it was a sobering thought too! So We got our costume last night and we’re actually being 70s disco fever! Haha thanks Teri for stopping by! Hugs and love xox

  15. Inspiring post.

    As the months roll on, mentally, it has become more challenging for me. But your post has made me look at the positives. As tough as it has been there are so many benefits to come out of this time. Mainly gratitude

    We all took so much for granted, mainly our freedom. The ability to fly wherever, whenever, by whatever means we want. Going for a few drinks with friends.

    Hope NewYork is a lot safer now for you.

    • Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts! I definitely agree – it is a challenging time on so many fronts. Yes – lots was taken for granted. Hugs and love xox

  16. Inspirational words. I often look back to the 60’s and 70’s of my youth. Much simpler times. Also, no cell phones, computers and constant barrage of technology. But, today is the best day to focus on. Yesterday is gone and tomorrow is not promised. Happy Halloween.

    • Thanks so much! I wish we could go back to times before cells!! Amen – today’s the best day! Hugs and love xox

  17. I really enjoyed looking back at some of your memories and photos.
    The mobile phone was really amusing however I had a Motorola Transportable with an iron battery, so heavy you sloped to 1 side and I actually broke a clients desk putting it down.
    Seriously though 2020 has been a year of trials and tribulations and we are not through it yet however the 1 thing that I believe in very deeply is always to have hope.
    I too think that a lot of people have spent a lot of time evaluating their lives and are in the process of making changes, relationships are important and those that are worthwhile are definitely worth working on, those that we don’t get any benefit from I think that it is a good time to reevaluate them. Certainly this is something that I have been doing and some people are no longer a part of my life but that’s OK.
    I wish you well in your continued journey through life, stay safe and well and take care of yourself 🙏❤️

  18. Well, that’s what I always do…Living in the past specially now on this pandemic. Your cheerleader outfit also reminds me of past cause I was a cheerleader younger! I still see dreams about that like last night…but it’s true that there’s always some good and some bad things going on, in every time period!

    • I feel you – It’s easy, especially now to live in “better times.” Oh how fun! I always wanted to be a cheerleader but I didn’t have a season where I could because I was on the soccer and basketball teams! Yes’ always some good! Thanks for stopping by! Hugs and love xox

  19. This was such a great post. I think you summed it up with this one sentence “But we should now appropriately put it to rest, in it’s rightful place — not idolized, not trivialized, not disregarded, just respected for what it was.”

  20. Their bodies begin to change. The male salmon’s jaw begins to elongate, the nose hooks downward and large, sharp teeth emerge. The physical transformations continues upon arriving at the mouth of their birth river as they adjust to life in freshwater again.

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