Throwback to a Vintage Halloween

Throwback to a Vintage Halloween

My mother is a saint. She gets texts like this from me on the regular, and she always delivers.

“Do you have that old picture of me in the library in my Woody Woodpecker costume?

-Oh my goodness, I don’t remember it. I can look in the trunk.

It might have been a newspaper clipping. It was in the story well in the library and I was sitting next to Michael Wayne.”

Michael’s last name isn’t Wayne but I knew if I said it like that she’d know right away I was talking about one of my all-time best childhood friends.

Seriously, how great were 70’s Halloween costumes?

They were total fire hazard suits and the molded plastic masks were sure to cut your face by the end of the night, but were they not the greatest? I enjoyed them in the 70’s and the 80’s.

children dressed in vintage costumes in the 1970's
Photo: L. Hudson and RealHonestMomBlog

I couldn’t wait to be Woody Woodpecker and my mom came through. Michael Wayne was the Hulk, I believe. (Some things never go out of style)

My mom is standing at the top of the picture (dark hair) holding my little sister, who is now 39 years old. I was hit with a wave of nostalgia as I saw this picture of the story well in the library where I spent a great deal of time as a kid. I remember the librarian reading stories and moving around characters on the felt board at the front of the room.

nostalgic halloween costumes
Photo: L. Hudson and RealHonestMomBlog

It also took me back to old school trick-or-treating in our small town.

It was back before safety was much of a priority, but it was the best.

Our parents would load us all up in the car (seat belts, schmeet belts), drop us off at the end of the street and we would run up and down the block with our cousins and friends searching out the good stuff.

vintage halloween costumes

We would run down the block with our masks flipped up on top of our heads just before ringing the doorbell. Then it was masks-down and a big, breathy “trick or treat!” in unison.

Then we would flip the masks back up on top of our heads and race to the next house, oblivious to the larger-than-life high school kids throwing eggs at each other at the town square and t.p.’ing houses and trees.

vintage woody woodpecker halloween costume
Photo: Ebay

Okay, well maybe not oblivious exactly, but we definitely had bigger priorities.

The weather mattered even less than the time on the clock, and we would stay out until we scoured every block and found every porch line shining bright.

We would get home and dump our bounties in close, yet territorial piles and count out the loot.

Mom would check for needles in the apples and popcorn balls. Not that it mattered, she would end up eating those herself because well, you know. Not at the top of the kid list, really.

I try to keep trick-or-treating with my own kids as close to what I got to experience growing up.

As much as you can today, anyway. We hit several streets full blast with breathy trick-or-treats. I walk closely with them, but I enjoy dressing up just as much as they do.


Some things never die.

Except fire hazard suits, thin plastic-molded masks, eggs and t.p.

Another 1970’s gem from the trunk (treasure chest):

A picture of my preschool class in 1979.

Photo: L. Hudson and RealHonestMomBlog

I’m on the upper right.

My mom loves to tell the story about how my grandma dressed me for school that day. The clothes were too small and if you look closely, my belly is hanging out the front of my shirt. Amen for pilgrim hats and a sweet friend in the middle row!

Not that it wouldn’t be awesome for me to see now. It’s still a classic memory.

Take. the. pictures.

Looking back on times like these ensure that I’m taking all of the pictures and videos I can of my kids now. One day I will be the mom at the top of the picture holding the baby that has long since grown up.

What are some of your favorite nostalgic Halloween memories?

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