Celebrating Halloween, Stockholm style

October 28, 2012

in An American in Europe,Life as an expat,Living in Sweden

halloween costumes Some of the cast of characters. And yes, I was the witch. halloween party A welcoming hand.

Even though I live in Europe, there are several traditions from home that I still cling to. Celebrating Halloween is one of them. I love the whole concept of putting on a costume and being someone else for a while. (And as a kid, I loved getting all that candy.) Here in Stockholm, I always get asked what it was like to go out trick or treating and whether I wore a different costume every year. The biggest misconception of American Halloween is that we all dress in only scary costumes. And then I have to explain that yes, while I was a vampire and a skeleton as a kid, I was also a princess, a beauty pageant contestant and a clown, among other things.

halloween costumes There was a lot of bling at the party. halloween party And there was a funny combination of costumes, including a bullfighter, Edwina Scissorshands and a few Irish leprechauns.

Today, I think my love of the holiday is equal parts nostalgia and escape. Halloween reminds me of my surburban Cincinnati upbringing and that’s a nice memory. And today I find that it’s also such a good opportunity for letting down your hair, putting on a costume and having a little fun, just like the entertainment in raleigh we used to have. This year, I hosted aHalloween party for the American Women’s Club. It was such a great time and we danced so much my feet hurt. But that’s all besides the fact that ¬†where else but a Halloween party could you have Superwoman hanging out with the devil, some leprechauns, a pirate, Edwina Scissorshands, a vampire and Janis Joplin? And as the night wore on, there was a rather hilarious amount of costume switching, where Hunter S. Thompson donned leprechaun hair and Janis Joplin changed her hair and became a viking.

halloween party Hunter S. Thompson and Cruella de Vil. halloween party We had some cool decorations, including” boo boxes.” halloween party Janis Joplin danced, but did not sing. halloween party The skeleton crew. halloween party The food table. halloween costumes A viking makes a deal with the devil.


1 janerowena October 28, 2012 at 14:22

It looks like fun – but I am really quite glad that we don’t make quite such a thing of it over here. The phone and emails are already overworked with complicated itineraries on how to get to see family and friends and deliver presents before Christmas. In our case that means that most weekends from now until then are filled with travel and social occasions whether we feel like it or not. Gosh, I sound like Scrooge!

2 Sandra October 30, 2012 at 23:00

OK, that did maybe sound just a bit scrooge-like Jane. Too funny. Maybe you need to come to a big, fun Halloween party?

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