Turtle Power (Powered by Diet Dew)

You may have noticed that I haven’t been around a lot this week. (What? You didn’t notice? I’m crushed.) This is because late last week, as I was talking to my mother, I said something about trick-or-treat this coming Saturday.

“It’s not on Saturday,” she said. “It’s Thursday.”


I know. I know. If I bothered to look at a calendar occasionally, I would have realized that this Saturday is November. Whatever.

So, it occurred to me at that moment that I had two less days to make Halloween costumes. I got my fabric and spent several hours on Saturday cutting out pattern pieces.

At church on Sunday, they reminded everyone that they were doing a Trunk-or-Treat for the kids tonight.

Double crap. Scratch off one more day to make costumes.

Growing up, we never had store-bought Halloween costumes. My mother wouldn’t hear of it–too cheap looking. Why pay for something poorly made when you can make it yourself?

Well, my kids have always had store bought costumes because, until last year, I was convinced that I didn’t know how to sew. This year, knowing better, it was time to step up to the plate and make three Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

Honestly, I had originally wanted to make these costumes last year. My big plan back then was to make the costumes for N~, W~, and C~, and an empty shell to stick over my still pregnant at the time belly (Mommy in a half shell). I thought it would be fabulously clever (especially if I made a little turtle head and legs to stick out from my back). I asked my mom if she still had the TMNT costume pattern from when she made one for my little brother (in 1990!!!). She couldn’t find it. My kids went as Darth Vader, Spider Man, and Superman–all thanks to WalMart.

A couple of months ago, I was in my parents’ house and noticed the Turtle pattern sitting by their telephone.

“Where did you find that???” I asked, knowing that we had searched everywhere for it.

“Oh, it was in the trunk of my car,” was my mother’s reply.


OK, I don’t think that they even made Saturns eighteen years ago. I know that particular one sure as heck wasn’t around when she made the costume for my brother (who is now 25). How that pattern ended up riding around in that trunk for at least a year is a mystery that my never be solved.

So, anyhow, I had my pattern. And, as I realized a few days ago, I had less than a week to make it. Three times.

I was up until one o’clock Monday night. Last night, I got to bed around two.


C~, W~, and N~ showing off their costumes. I’m not sure if C~ looks more like Michelangelo or Mush Mouth. (You get this without a password since they are wearing masks)


As I stand to accept this award for The Best Mommy Ever, I would like to take this opportunity to show my appreciation.

First, I would like to thank Joann Fabric for having the foresight to stock solid green pre-quilted fabric, without which I would have actually had to quilt a turtle shell design on by hand. My mom pointed out that I still could put the concentric rings over the quilted pattern for added effect. I could have but, you know, monkeys, orifices…it didn’t happen.

To my mother: Thank you for teaching me to sew (even though I didn’t realize it until I was 30). Also, thank you for letting me borrow your sewing machine when mine went wacky at just the wrong time. I now know that everything they say in the commercials is true–nothing runs like a Husqvarna.

And finally, I’d like to thank the soft drink engineers at Pepsi Co. I couldn’t have pulled off the short nights without you.


The costumes are made, and I doubt that my children will ever begin to comprehend what a representation of my love and devotion to them they really are. I don’t sacrifice that much sleep for just anyone. Which leaves me with just one more thing to say:

Mom, thanks for all of the Halloween costumes.



Filed under Daily Life, Kids, Patting myself on the back

7 responses to “Turtle Power (Powered by Diet Dew)

  1. You forgot, “And thank you to my brother-in-law’s mother who gave my sister that kick butt Husqvarna that now resides at my mother’s house because my sister doesn’t sew. Much. So far.”

  2. Very cute picture, btw, and awesome costumes!

  3. Well, you know, if I didn’t realize that I could do it…Maybe you should just give it a try. It isn’t nearly as scary as I thought for all of those years.

  4. You really are an awesome Mommy. That’s one thing I’m sure I’ll never do!

  5. Nicole

    Wow! Nice work!! What a great mom you are. I’m sure someday the kiddos will appreciate all your efforts. Maybe next year you could shift them all up a costume and put E in C’s costume and make another one for N. Oh, and maybe you’ll be prego again… and you can pull off your Mommy in a half shell idea! 😉

  6. Awesome costumes! Way to go!

  7. Nancy

    I have to explain that the pattern was in a box in my trunk with other patterns. It was a swap around thing that never got off he ground. I do have to admit it was there for over a year, though. It got shoved back in the corner where I couldn’t reach it.

    You’re welcome. I am taking my bows as I type for all the years of costumes. But now you understand, not only did you get nice costumes out of it, but I enjoyed making them as much as you are now enjoying doing it.

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