The Halloween Costume: A Guest Post by My Daughter

I’m so happy to introduce my guest blogger today, someone brand new to blogging and very near and dear to my heart: my college-age daughter. Ever since I started blogging, we’ve talked about her writing a post, and Halloween seemed like the perfect opportunity!

HAPPY HALLOWEEN from my daughter (and me)!

As far back as I can remember I have always taken Halloween very seriously. Perhaps it was the three-piece princess costumes my mom sewed for me or the way my brother showed me how to strategically hit all the houses that gave out king-sized candy bars. For whatever reason, I accept nothing less than perfection for my Halloween experience.
Being a college student, this task becomes more and more challenging. Don’t get me wrong, I have consistently lived up to my expectations, creating costumes on the fly with a student’s budget and listening to Halloween songs on YouTube as I do my psychology readings. However, this year, the Halloween season took a disastrous turn. For some unfathomable reason, my organic chemistry professor decided to give us a test TWO DAYS before Halloween. Although I love Halloween, my grade in that class is exponentially more important. Thus, I spent the week before Halloween not carving pumpkins or roasting seeds or preparing my costume or making candy-apples but instead learning the mechanisms of Wittig reactions and basic enolates (I could probably synthesizea candy apple at this point).

You can imagine my stress, then, when on the Friday before Halloween (after my exam), I STILL HAD NO COSTUME, let alone decorations or Halloween cheer. Frantic, another friend who had no costume (he also had a midterm) and I assembled a team of Halloweeners for a group costume: two post-test students, one generally apathetic boy, and one kid who planned to go as himself for Halloween. Not usually the dedicated fan base I roll with on such an important holiday, but, hey, I was taking what I could get this year. After much debate among the group (read: I couldn’t decide what we should be and no one else really cared), we settled on the Winnie the Pooh gang. I would be piglet, mainly because everything I own is pink.

And so here is where the real story begins. Who knows why I embarked on the ensuing fiasco—perhaps my Halloween spirits were not sufficiently satisfied with the lack-luster Halloween preparations. Whatever the reason, I decided that I NEEDED to have a Winnie the Pooh ring tone for the occasion.


Sure, I thought to myself, It’ll be easy! Google free ringtones, piece of cake!


I think I was doomed from the minute I thought it would be easy.


I found the perfect ringtone for free—the Winnie the Pooh THEME. So, I clicked the link. Create a password? Perfect! BUT I realized it was one of those websites where essentially every password has already been taken. So I spent approximately five minutes coming up with a novel ten character password that I would never forget incase I needed to find another Disney ringtone.


After this, I got transported to ANOTHER website where I had to create ANOTHER password to get the ringtone texted to me. Fine, I thought, not a big deal, I love texts. Great. So I created this second password and received the text. BUT I had to follow a link on my phone to a website. And this website didn’t load. Argh, thought I, I just wasted half an hour (no joke) trying to get this ringtone!


So of course I checked my phone ringtones to see if I could BUY the Winnie the Pooh ringtone. What’s $.99 for an evening of entertainment and the icing on the perfect costume—the candy on the corn, if you will. So I bought the ringtone. EXCEPT, it was the SONG not the ringtone. OKAY, I yelled to myself, I WILL CREATE MY OWN RINGTONE. I’ve done it thousands of times before, I thought, so it’s not a big deal. (note: I’ve done this once with my friend. He literally did the whole thing for me).


I randomly opened various toolbars and pull-down menus in iTunes, trying to remember the directions. I struggled for about seven minutes (no way I was putting in a full ten), and then a brilliant idea struck me.


I bet there’s an app for this.


Low and behold, there is.


SO, I download the app and started making a ringtone. But, of course, I had to pick the PERFECT time in the song… which takes another five minutes because you can’t have a ringtone that awkwardly starts or stops in the middle of a verse. When I found the perfect timing, I saved the file.


There, I said to myself, I KNEW it would be easy.


BUT, as I checked my ringtones, IT’S NOT THERE. Then I realized the app has instructions. I needed to SYNC my phone with my computer and then download the ringtone to my desktop then upload it or sideload it or whatever to my iTunes and THEN RE-sync my phone with my iTunes. At this piece of instruction, my heart sunk. I never actually LEARNED how to use iTunes because I’ve never wanted to take the time to read the instructions. I usually just frantically click until something I want happens (but wait, some of you perceptive readers may think, aren’t you a science person, shouldn’t you KNOW to read instructions first? Yes, I should. It’s one of the many paradoxes of my life).




So, I followed the instructions on the app. However, they are utterly useless because they assume some competence with computers. At this point, nothing will stop me. SO I SEARCHED FOR IT ON YOUTUBE (this part is especially embarrassing, however, it helps).


After this, I finally had a Winnie the Pooh ringtone. Gosh, I thought to myself, glowing with pride, that felt like it took HOURS!


Because it did take hours.


In the time that I could have learned three more organic chemistry mechanisms, I instead created a Winnie the Pooh ringtone that I will use for one night and probably never actually hear because everyone who would actually call me will be WITH me.

Winnie the Pooh ringtone: multiple hours, Winnie the Pooh songs blasting from my speakers at 9AM, one new app, and $.99.

Retaining my Halloween pride: priceless.

Happy Halloween!


  1. Ann says:

    As I was reading this I thought….of my poor Honey Bunny….

    Honey Bunny wanted the Geico Boss’s ringtone and he practically broke our computer trying to get it! After a LOT of colorful language, he finally admitted defeat and gave the phone to me!

    Happy Halloween to you, Julia, MEH and the rest of the gang! I hope the party was a blast!

  2. Oh MY can I relate! This is why my husband is in charge of all things technology… though I recognize that it is never good to be so dependent, or you’re doomed be forever left behind in the technology race. Take it from an almost-40 gal who has been left behind!

    Funny story! And well told. Thanks for sharing, Julia’s daughter.

  3. Pet says:

    Wow, you do have your own mind for things 🙂 Go for it.

  4. Barb Riley says:

    Dear Julia’s daughter: I love your sense of humor; you are a LOT like your mom in how it shows through in your writing. I laughed as I read about your tangential research—all in the name of the coveted Winnie the Pooh ringtone! As a fellow non-reader-of-directions, I can relate to your frustrations.

    Happy Halloween to you, too! Come back and let us know how your Halloween goes! Surely your Pooh ringtone will make everyone smile. Julia: it’s a reason to call your daughter a bunch of times today! 😉

  5. This is probably not what you want to hear, but it is SO comforting that not only us 40-somethings have these kinds of problems. Your generation makes it seems so easy, usually.

    Thank you for sharing!
    Hannah @A Mother in Israel

  6. Erika Marks says:

    Hello, Julia’s daughter! We are so excited to hear from you!

    This was a wonderful, wonderful post–that sums up how we all feel on such a regular basis these days–why must the simplest exercises take so long? Especially in an age of “convenient” technology?

    I loved your closing line–and wish you a super Halloween with lots and lots of ringing! 😉

  7. Great post, Julia’s daughter. And I feel your pain about a technology that should be easy, but yet takes hours on end.

    Hope you had a fun Halloween anyhow. 🙂

  8. country wife says:

    When a girl has set her mind, there’s just no stopping her 🙂

    Happy Halloween!

  9. Ha! I bet there is a certain someone that would call you in order to hit your ringtone quota. 🙂

    Fun post and great to meet you, Julia’s daughter!

  10. Funny story and great writing! I hope Halloween turns out to be super-fun for you as Piglet. And that you get lots of cell phone calls at all the right moments. ;~D

  11. I admire your determination! I’ll do my best to follow your example when I want something desperately. There is always a way!

  12. CMSmith says:

    I’m laughing out loud here.

    And let’s not forget the time it took to write the blog. . .

    Wonderful post.

  13. Wonderful post with great, funny writing daughter-of-Julia 🙂 I can totally relate. Not so much in terms of Halloween but in terms of perfectionism in general. When I get really excited about something I get hung up on small things that seem crucial and I spend hours tweaking little, usually insignificant details. It’s always something I’m doing online (of course) and technology consistently teaches me lessons. Sigh. Hope to hear from you again! Happy Halloween!

  14. lkramer14 says:

    Wonderful post! And I’m so glad you got your ring tone. Now, of course, we need pictures. Happy Halloween!


  15. Bless your heart, Honey. I have a difficult time with technology, too, so I could definitely relate to this post. At least you did salvage your Halloween pride, though; hope tonight is everything you want it to be and more!

  16. Brahahaha!
    So it’s not only me that has these stupid, assinine, doomed wrestling matches with technology! That really makes me feel better…
    Great post, Julia’s daughter. Loved it, hon 🙂

  17. Ah-ha! So this runs in the family, I see! 😉

    I SO enjoyed your post, Julia’s daughter! It reminded me a lot of Julia’s post about the lego kit and how she went on an endless search for the perfect representation of home. Clearly once the two of you set your mind to something, there’s no turning back! I can very much relate.

    Hope you’re having a wonderful Halloween, and that we’ll get to hear from you again!

  18. So nice to meet you, Julia’s daughter!!!!

  19. Ado says:

    “Wittig reactions and basic enolates (I could probably synthesize a candy apple at this point).” —-> HAHAHA! Of course you could!
    I am shocked you weren’t able to just clone Winnie the Pooh himself with all that organic chemistry! (-:

  20. Aww, and there could have been a couple of pretty simple solutions there! The madness we get into when we’re pressed for time, eh? XD Happy Halloween to you all.


  21. BIKE LADY says:

    A story very well told. Nice post for your first! Congrats, Mom! Smart and funny daughter.

  22. Bella says:

    What a wonderful first post for your daughter! I hope this means we’ll be seeing more of her! Regarding the Winnie the Pooh ring tone, I think it speaks of your perseverance and drive to obtain what you want. Both admirable qualities in a person. Good for you!

  23. Haven’t we all been here at one time or another? Something that should be so simple ends up taking hours and causes loads of frustration along the way. By that point you have waaay too much invested to give up.
    I hope you had a nice Halloween in the end. 🙂

  24. Welcome to Julia’s daughter! I hope we’ll be hearing more from you…

  25. Thank yous to all commenters! My wonderful daughter is busy with organic chemistry, physics, and two psychology classes — but she wanted me to let you all know just how much she LOVED and APPRECIATED all your comments! She called me several times to say just how much she enjoyed the whole experience and was bowled over with how nice everyone was. Huge thank yous!

  26. Lisa Ahn says:

    This is my favorite part: “I never actually LEARNED how to use iTunes because I’ve never wanted to take the time to read the instructions. I usually just frantically click until something I want happens”

    Ah, yes. That’s me. Just keep hitting buttons and something will happen.

    I loved this story and I’m so glad to meet you Julia’s daughter!

  27. Lisa, That was one of my favorite parts, too! And despite the fact that I used to WRITE manuals about how to use computers, I STILL do that! Thank you so much for reading and commenting on my daughter’s post…. here’s to our wonderful daughters! 🙂

  28. Nancy Kelley says:

    Oh, Julia’s Daughter, I can relate! I did much the same thing on Halloween weekend, only I was trying to create an ebook. Multiple programs, heart-sinking, why didn’t I do this earlier, etc–it was all there. But now I have an ebook, and you have a Winnie The Pooh ringtone. Yay for us!

  29. Nancy, As “Julia’s Daughter” has midterms in Organic Chem and Physics coming up soon, I’ll reply for her and say: from experience I know that you and my daughter only wait to do things because you both are very very busy people who drive yourselves hard! I’m glad you finished your ebook and my daughter has a Winnie the Pooh ringtone (and is such a dedicated and hard working young woman in all she does!). 🙂

  30. I love to hear real stories. This one was great! Probably because it was written with a real life experience. Great job! So your daughter wrote this, does she have a blog too?

  31. Emma, Glad you found this story by my daughter! I’ll pass along your lovely compliment — she’s a full time college student so doesn’t have time to blog on a regular basis, but she occasionally will be guesting here. Thanks for your comment and your visit to my blog!