The words "trick or treat" aren't usually synonymous with bedtime, but one night recently they did the trick.
On a foray caring for some of our grandchildren, bedtime was the most difficult. We get tired and the kids whose parents are away get wired.
While baby-sitting Summer and Laila, ages 6 and 4, singing a few songs seemed to help, but telling stories proved even better.
One night they requested a story about me as a little girl on Halloween, so I dug back into my memory and came up with the pomegranate story.
Many years ago in a land far away (Farmington), the word got out that a certain house was giving away whole pomegranates.
Now in those days after the war, an orange or something as exotic as a pomegranate was a special treat, unless you lived in California or Arizona where they were more plentiful.
The nicest thing about a pomegranate was you could peel off a piece of skin, eat some seeds and then cover it for another day, savoring the experience.
As I remember, the house was way across town, so by the time we got there after collecting treasure along the way, it was quite dark.
The house was not near other homes, so that made us pause to see if we dared venture up to it in the dark.
We stood there, weighing the possibilities — one of them being if we were late perhaps the pomegranates would be gone and we would have ventured into the dark for nothing.
Finally, our desire for the fruit outweighed our fears, and we carefully walked to the house and knocked on the door.
It didn't open immediately and we held our breath in anticipation.
Oh, happy Halloween!
The door opened, we called out "trick or treat" and felt our candy bag sag as that pomegranate fell into our bag.
We ran all the way to my house and upon arriving we casted aside the candy and tore into the fruit.
Of course our granddaughters' curiosity was piqued and I had to get a pomegranate to show them how good they are.
Now pomegranates — like all fruit — can sometimes be quite tart. Even our grandsons came to watch as I cut off the top and the bottom then scored the sides to get at the fruit.
It was lucky that this particular pomegranate was red and juicy and quite delicious, and we all had a go picking and eating some seeds.
Truthfully, I was surprised that such a simple story about something as ordinary as a pomegranate would please these grandchildren who are likely given a whole. Possibly it was because the story was about me, their grandmother, and that I was a little girl like them with hopes and dreams.
They wanted to know what I dressed up as, but I couldn't remember.
Our costumes usually consisted of a new mask, but the rest of it would be whatever we could scavenge — very unlike the professional costumes nowadays. My mother was a good seamstress and could do wonders with a sheet.
All little children like to dress up as they begin to decide what they want to become.
Our grandson Cy has been a pirate every year of his life so far. We're hoping this isn't indicative of the future.
It's acceptable for kids to wear their costumes year round anymore. During our grandparenting years, we've had the privilege of escorting some famous characters — such as Snow White, Batman, Robin, Woody, Buzz and Jessie — to the store and the park.
There couldn't be more esteemed company, especially on Halloween night.