Today I felt like I had been waiting for this day my entire life and didn't even know it. I know that's a little dramatic but stick with me. This morning Jake's school celebrated All Saints Day. Instead of Halloween they asked all the kids to dress up as saints. They do this every year (my husband went to this school for all of his schooling). I dressed Jake as Saint Damien of Molokai and Siena as Mother Teresa of Calcutta. I went to see the little parade that they were having to celebrate which started with school-wide prayer time. Now you'd think that a 100-ish three- to eighteen-year-olds wouldn't really be into praying on Halloween-- and I'm sure there were some who weren't-- but I stood in the back of the auditorium and watched a bunch of kids singing and raising their hands in worship. It was kind of amazing. I felt like I'm giving something to Jake by putting him in a place where prayer time is alive and vibrant, where teenagers are singing and raising their hands in praise.
More so I felt so happy that he was dressed as a saint and all the kids around him were. Don't get me wrong, I really don't have huge problem with Halloween as long as it's done as an innocent opportunity to get candy at your neighbors house but, the way I see it, why not take a day when kids would be dressing up anyway and encourage them to research and dress up as holy people of the Church.
Siena's costume was easy to put together. I got a white pillow case at a thrift store for $.99, cut the sides, and hot glued ribbon to the edges (I was too lazy to sew them on). I didn't take step-by-step pictures but I put together a little picture that I hope will do the trick.
To make it easier for it to stay on her, I hand-stitched it to a winter hat that I could just slip on her. The way the Missionaries wear their habit is over their head, down their back and draped back on the front over the opposite shoulder. So that's what I did on Siena and safety pinned to the back of her dress. She wore it over an all-white dress that was already in her closet.
Also, I found this great resource website for helping kids learn about saints including cartoons and printables and downloadable ebooks-- Happy Saints. I'm really loving it!