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Another Halloween has come and gone. Here's some of our decorations and some of the many great costumes that came to our door. We had between 130-140 trick-or -treaters come by; more than in quite a few years, as parties have become more popular. We actually ran out of goodies and started giving away quarters, which the  kids thought were AWESOME! 

This bat came and sat in our tree!

Our neighbors and their kids.One half of the twins across the street; the other half was ill.A giant cookie! Who could ask for more?

An angry banana!
There was an Angry Birds costume also, but I missed him. (Angry Birds is that game everyone seems to be playing on thier I-phones and I-pods these days).

There were so many great costumes this year, better than most years. The olders kids were their school back packs around their necks and one just throws the goodies in there. The younger kids have pumpkins and bags for their stash. A really fun Halloween! Given that we had snowy weather just days before, the kids lucked out with a perfect day.

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What is it with you guys and Halloween? Is the third photo down Donald Rumsfeld by any chance?

By which I mean the US of A, not just you. Seems to be a much bigger celebration over there than over here. Why?

Don't really know. We just love Halloween because it gives everyone a chance to dress up and get free goodies from strangers. We've never had any tricks played on us. Halloween partly stems from All Hallows Eve, when the spirits of the dead were supposed to walk the earth before All Saints Day. Somewhat like Mexico's Day of the Dead, when people visit the graves of loved ones and leave food and gifts.

I'm told that in the 20's and 30's, kids used to go door to door on Thanksgiving Day, begging for treats.

The bone man does look a bit like Rummy. He never did smile much.

Would it horrify you to know that many of the old fogeys in our road put up signs saying no trick or treat. Caused a bit of a stir when one of the trick or treaters called anyway, tore up the sign and threw it at the householder when he opened the door. He was escorted home in the end by the police and consequently none of the Tot'ers dared make it to our house. So we have a big box of sweets to eat.

I think you have goldfinches over there. Someone near here had 400 turned up around their bird feeders recently in the garden. Most on the ground. They have had an amazing autumn.

Those were not nice trick or treatera! Here, if a house has no outside lights on, kids know that there are no treats there.

We do have goldfinches; don't get too many in our little yard. I see the winter versions of them in Florida. I had several hundred Grackles here again the other day. They swarmed all 3 of my feeders, ate everything and left. Again, only males. Ken said he saw a flock of only females down on the beach. I'm guessing the sexes separate after mating.

Single sex flocks sounds really odd. Our goldfinch populations are booming. Back in 1995 they were reported from around 25% of UK gardens. Numbers have increased every year and this year they look like they could be closer to 70%. Folks have started feeding them with nyger seed in special feeders, a trick which I think we picked up from your side of the pond.
We have a stunning TV series on the arctic and antarctic on the BBC at the moment. This bit had me in stitches last night Iabout 52 seconds into the clip of film) http://www.boreme.com/posting.php?id=31131

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