Heater, Mother of Lance

Halloween 2013

In very uncharacteristic fashion I had preparations for halloween finished weeks ago. Costumes, candy, the refill on my anti-anxiety medication, all of it. Normally I put it off until the week of the holiday and I’m standing there in one of those seasonal stores where every shelf has been picked clean except for a three little pigs costume for a six-month-old. And I’m like, hm… Leta won’t mind if it’s a little too tight around the waist.

Marlo got her costume months ago from Costco and I ordered Leta’s online the first week of October. Sometimes I wish I was the kind of mother who could sew original costumes, but then Halloween night arrives and Leta doesn’t want me to style her hair. Or put any makeup on her face. Or add anything to the costume that did not accompany it in the plastic bag it was shipped in. And before she’s even left the front door she’s removed all the little extras because “they itch.” I don’t think she’s ever going to look back on her childhood and think, “Damn. If only my mom had made me costumes that required long and uncomfortable fittings followed by several boring alterations where she could have accidentally poked me with a needle. Then I would have known she loved me.”

No, she didn’t want any makeup on, but my mother stopped by as I was getting them both dressed and worked her Avon voodoo, convincing Leta that a little bit wouldn’t hurt. The price I had to pay for this was Marlo’s Grandmommy high, a behavior not unlike what happens when a child her age consumes a queen-size pillowcase of candy in one sitting.

You see, it started off so innocently…


How adorable is that, right? She’s Tinker Bell. She let me put her hair in a bun and didn’t even attempt to rip it out. But then I guess the high kicked in.








Oh, look! Her sister is a vampire. Isn’t that great? That’s so great.




AHEM. Does she have to perform a flip again because she totally will.


We told her to step aside for just one second because it was Leta’s turn.





And that’s when she went from Tinker Bell to Evil Fairy Who is Totally Going to Take A Huge Shit in the Middle of Your Bed Tonight.


  • Tish

    2013/11/04 at 3:31 pm

    Reminds me of Hyperbole’s dinosaur costume effect…have you read that brilliant piece?

  • Jennifer

    2013/11/04 at 3:31 pm

    Oh. My. God. That face will not rest until everyone in the world feels her fairy wrath.

    … I can’t stop giggling.

  • Rachael

    2013/11/04 at 3:32 pm

    Wow. I have never seen any human being emote the true character of Tinker Bell more so than Marlo. Uncanny! Your kids look great and I hope everyone had a fangtastic Halloween <3

  • Katie Sutton

    2013/11/04 at 3:39 pm


  • Sue

    2013/11/04 at 3:40 pm

    This made me laugh SO HARD. Thank you! Your kids are awesome, Heather.

  • Jennatorture

    2013/11/04 at 3:42 pm

    The one where Marlo is frowning at Leta and Leta is smiling like the cat that got the canary is all that is wonderful about the big/little sister relationship!

  • Nan

    2013/11/04 at 3:55 pm

    Leta is really getting the hang of vamping for the camera (appropriate for a vampire). She looks great. Since I’ve watched her grow up year after year, it still surprises me when she looks like she’s getting older. Marlo is a kick and a half!

  • Candice

    2013/11/04 at 4:06 pm

    I love these two. I cannot wait for Leta’s memoir.

  • Richard Morey

    2013/11/04 at 4:22 pm

    “Evil Fairy Who is Totally Going to Take A Huge Shit in the Middle of Your Bed Tonight.” hahaha love that! Your kids are adorable.

  • Paul Smithberger

    2013/11/04 at 4:26 pm

    Great photos! I think I like the last two the best.

  • kmpinkel

    2013/11/04 at 4:27 pm

    Love. I cannot believe how big and old Leta has become. She no longer looks like a little kid. Sniff. marlo on the other hand makes you take a double take and say “oh shit. hide the fine china.”

  • Katybeth

    2013/11/04 at 4:28 pm

    Leta is such a beautiful young lady. A good example of beauty and brains…and with a natural “look” comedians kill for. Marlo is adorable.I hope you clapped twice and believed…..

  • Jeanie

    2013/11/04 at 4:50 pm

    Those pictures are Great!

  • KateTdid

    2013/11/04 at 4:50 pm

    I am crying because I am laughing so hard. This was epic!

  • Kristan

    2013/11/04 at 5:35 pm

    LOL. The last 2 pics are the best. (And okay maybe the ones where Marlo’s on her bum.) Gosh, Leta looks so mature! Can’t believe we’ve been reading about her since she was a baby.

  • Teal

    2013/11/04 at 5:39 pm

    Man, that’s a good pout! That last shot of Leta is like a preview of what she’ll look like as a teenage. Lovely!

  • Amanda Gobaud

    2013/11/04 at 6:46 pm


    That is all.

  • JRSF

    2013/11/04 at 7:40 pm

    The Evil Fairy photo would be a great holiday card. Inside: “Bah F’ing Humbug!”

  • TWM

    2013/11/04 at 8:26 pm


  • GP

    2013/11/04 at 8:44 pm

    Oy to the vey! These pics (and your captions) are PRICELESS. First time commenter, and I *so* love your blog! I have a niece who is just as much of a ham as Marlo, and I’ll tell you the same thing I told my sister:
    Please, please, PLEASE get that girl in some dance classes, youth theater, whatever it takes. She NEEDS to be on a stage! I think she would LOVE it, and everyone who was lucky enough to be in the audience at one of her performances would love watching her.

  • Danalan

    2013/11/04 at 9:24 pm

    Great shots, lovely girls. Marlo is going to generate so. much. drama.

  • Kathy

    2013/11/04 at 9:33 pm

    Frame these last two pics!

  • SmithShack71

    2013/11/04 at 10:06 pm

    Good stuff.

  • jenny

    2013/11/05 at 12:02 am

    It will be called; ‘Mom Sold My Childhood to Pay the Mortgage.’

  • Chloe

    2013/11/05 at 12:59 am

    Oh my god. That first photo of them together – SO funny the look Marlo has when staring at Leta!

    Absolutely loved the last photo!


    2013/11/05 at 1:27 am

    haloen vui

  • BeckyCochrane

    2013/11/05 at 3:43 am

    Those last two photos are killer. Love them.

  • Folaigh

    2013/11/05 at 6:36 am

    I mean this in the most affectionate way, but I LOVE how dorky Leta is.

  • Jaclynhoek

    2013/11/05 at 6:57 am

    The photos of Leta and Marlo together KILL me! I have two girls as well. It’s amazing how much power an older sister can yield just by ignoring her performing monkey of a little sis!

  • JasonTromm

    2013/11/05 at 7:05 am

    Do Mormons believe in arranged marriages? I have a very handsome nine year old son that would love to meet Leta.

  • Jackie

    2013/11/05 at 9:54 am


  • Kelly B

    2013/11/05 at 11:57 am

    I love how Leta went from “Ugh, take pictures already before Marlo goes out of her skin” to looking like she just snapped her fingers in the shape of a Z almost. She is the most fabulous Miss Vampira I’ve ever seen. And Marlo is totally Tinkerbelling.

  • Lauren3

    2013/11/05 at 11:59 am

    Leta is divine in that last picture of her. She is channeling The Jessica Lange, brunette style.

  • Beth

    2013/11/05 at 12:22 pm

    So funny. Great costumes!

  • crash1212

    2013/11/05 at 12:34 pm

    That last picture of Leta is fabulous….as is the last one, however ominous, of Marlo. Cute kids/cute costumes.

  • Kristin

    2013/11/05 at 1:08 pm

    These pictures are priceless.

  • cattail722

    2013/11/05 at 1:46 pm

    Don’t hold back. Tell us how you really feel.

  • Jenn

    2013/11/05 at 4:38 pm

    Your girls are adorable. I’m glad that they had a nice time dressing up for Halloween.

  • Kelly B

    2013/11/06 at 8:07 am

    If she has her mother’s sense of humor? Definitely.

  • anonnynomnom9

    2013/11/06 at 9:29 am

    This has been your best post in a while – so damn funny!

  • Deanne Carte Groves

    2013/11/06 at 10:43 am

    all I can say….they are both beautiful…

  • valeria73

    2013/11/06 at 2:25 pm

    You know? ITA. I’m actually impressed with how little of their lives are broadcast on here. I’ve read some “mommy blogs” that are horrifying with the oversharing (including a local one where the woman actually identified her favorite of four children, and not in a tongue-in-cheek way).

Heather B. Armstrong

Hi. I’m Heather B. Armstrong, and this used to be called mommy blogging. But then they started calling it Influencer Marketing: hashtag ad, hashtag sponsored, hashtag you know you want me to slap your product on my kid and exploit her for millions and millions of dollars. That’s how this shit works. Now? Well… sit back, buckle up, and enjoy the ride.

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