But where did those fantastically modest frocks come from? Hope wore a dress and bonnet that was made for my sister in law when she was a child. She recently passed it on to Eva, and Eva might wear it out! Hope also sported a pinafore apron made by my grandmother for one of my young cousins and passed on to us. Her costume was completed by adorable little black pointy toe boots. Eva's and my dresses were sewn by a good friend of my family. She had four daughters, about my same age, and each summer we all attended "Old Time School" together, in a one-room school house, in our old time outfits. Our friend was gracious enough to unearth the dresses, shawls, boots, bonnets, and lunch pails that her girls had worn to school 20 years ago or more! Eric admittedly felt a little left out of the loop, as we threw his costume together (complete with nylon rope suspenders) the night of the party :(.
I don't know how Ma did it, wearing a bonnet and trying to keep track of her three little girls all the time! The radius of sight when that bonnet is snugly tied under your chin is really small! Right, Hope? Ahhh, now that's better!
And there's Half-Pint herself. Eva was in a make-believe paradise, in which all the adults called her Laura and she was allowed as many corn bread muffins as she could consume. To her, pioneer life is intoxicating, captivating, and all together perfect. I think it is the delightful combination of high adventure and simplicity intertwined with family life that make keep us coming back to those good 'ol days. To top it all off, we found out there were prizes to be won for the best costumes. A combination of pride and ecstasy slowly crept across Eva's face when they announced the winners for "best executed costume", the Ingalls Family!!! It took her half a second to realize that WE were the INGALLS family, but then she was all about the chocolates and coffee that we won! And here's Pa with his happy girls.
We weren't the only fun costumes at the party that night. Although I didn't get good pictures of everyone, there was also the Wetzel family, dressed as a small swarm of bees.And Becca L., came as an "extinct Northwest mechanic."
And Caleb and Kristie came as a cowboy and his princess. This picture was taken as Caleb tried his hardest to get Kristie to kiss him in front of other people. He succeeded! Jon H., voted least likely to ever dress up, surprised us all and came as an over-the-top tourist. He had it all: water sox, chapstik lanyard, foam visor, name tag, Hawaiian shirt, sunscreen nose, and last but not least FANNY PACK! Tonya complimented him in her turtle costume.
Joel and Erika were a pumpkin and it's guts. Mmmmm...Hope's buddy, Roman, was a cow.
And his mother was the most beautiful widow in mourning I've ever laid eyes on.
Did you want to see one last picture of little Hope in her prairie garb??? Me too!There she goes!