Dear Snarky – My Mom Needs to Quit Wearing Sexy Halloween Costumes

Dear Snarky,

 I need help with my mother. I swear she thinks she’s Jennifer Lopez and by that I mean at 55 she is very proud of her body and loves to show it off. Every Halloween she goes all out with the sexy costumes. This Halloween she is wearing a costume that is a replica of the iconic dress J.Lo wore where she’s almost naked.

 My problem is she’s planning on wearing it to a Halloween party hosted by my boyfriend’s parents. I told her that costume was not appropriate for this kind of party and she told me I was just “jealous.”

 Seriously, she can’t show up to meet my boyfriend’s parents for the first time in a costume where she’s that exposed. How do I get her to wear something that at least covers her chest?

 Signed, Distressed Daughter

Dear Distressed,

First, let me say I’m not into body shaming nor am I the Fashion Police. In fact, the only style crimes that get me really ticked off are adults wearing P.J’s on a plane or people who wear shorts and flip flops to church weddings.

 As for your mother I’m afraid you’re not going to get her to wear a nun costume. I think the more you beg her to cover up the more she’s going to want to take the girls out. That said if I had a body that resembled Jennifer Lopez’s I might be inclined to be queen of the crop top.

 I suggest that perhaps the first time your boyfriend’s parents meet your parents is not at this party. Maybe you can schedule a coffee get together so their initial “how do you do” is with your mom wearing clothing and not a costume.

 Remember you’re not responsible for your mom’s behavior or life choices. At 55 years old how she dresses is her business and her business alone. Maybe she’s living her best life.

 As for your boyfriend’s parents if they’re going to judge you based on your mother’s Halloween costume then they have issues. #runaway

 Now as for that  jealous comment it sounds like your mother’s maternal instincts might need a refresh. Her quip was very unkind and leads me to believe that her entire self worth is tied up in her appearance and let me tell you as an aging female that totally sucks.

If you have a question for Dear Snarky – advice with an attitude – email me at 😉

Halloween Costumes for Parents of Teenagers

unearthed-sexycostumereality-1610-1-web-1My son inadvertently gave me a brilliant idea for a line of Halloween costumes aimed at parents with teenagers due to a sassy insult he threw my way while I was talking to him on the phone.

Now to actually get him on the phone required me to go into full fib mode. I don’t know about you, but my children don’t use their phone for making calls – ever. To get him to actually talk to me I have to do what I call baiting the money hook. This means texting him about his finances.

It goes exactly like this: “Do you need more money for the rest of this month? Your dad thought maybe you were running low.”

When I send this text I know all I need to do is count to five before I get a response in the affirmative. Then I text back “call me so we can talk about how much you need.”  3, 2, 1 and ring-a-ding-ding. It’s my son using his phone for its primary purpose. Hold me. I feel faint.

Once I have him on the phone I began a mom interrogation about what’s fun and new at college. This past week he updated me on the happenings at a career fair. I, of course, gave him oodles of excellent advice and sage wisdom, which lead him to suggest that I go as a “helicopter parent for Halloween.”

After we got off the phone I began thinking that my son might be onto something (and it’s not that I’m a helicopter parent). Halloween costumes for parents of teenagers could be a h-u-g-e, untapped market. I did some research and Americans spent  $350 million on Halloween costumes – for their pets. Yes, pets! I can only imagine what this could bring in. 

In an effort to find investors for Halloween 2017 I’m unveiling a sneak peek at my debut collection right now. Drum roll please.

The star of the line is, of course, going to be the Helicopter Parent costume. This ensemble will feature a hat that resembles rotor blades and a rectangle over the head sheath that will look like an iPhone screen with apps that light up (battery included). These apps will be the high school parent portal that lists current grades, a child tracker GPS system, a homework to do list, the current class rank of your kid and a live stream of what your teen is posting on all of his or her social media accounts.

The next costume coming down the runway is the ACT/SAT Parent. Remember when you were in high school and you just showed up on a Saturday morning and took your college entrance exam? No muss. No fuss. Now every parent has to have skin in the game and by that I mean money is spent on tutoring and getting a statistical analysis of what time of the year is better to achieve a higher score. This costume will be large number two pencil with a hat in the shape of an eraser where you can attached a check made out to the college prep business of your choice.

Behold the wonder of the Finstagram costume. A “Finsta” is teen’s fake (or second) Instagram account where they “get real” and by that I mean post drunk, duck face pics and share other assorted moments in high school debauchery. The costume will look like an Instagram page with the front featuring a “perfect” teen as portrayed on the account parents monitor and the back will be the Finstagram account which will be a large photo of a red solo cup. The sight of which makes any legal guardian murmur, “Oh God, no.”

The showstopper of the collection will be a limited edition (I’m thinking perhaps even going couture) cheerleader outfit with a huge megaphone. This costume is called the Bragger. The outfit will be personalized with your teen’s face emblazoned on the cheer sweater and the working megaphone will be not only be decoupaged with all of your kid’s report cards, but at the touch of a button will loudly broadcast every thing your child has ever done up to and including pre-school achievements to college acceptance letters. Pom-poms will be extra.

Seriously, I’m thinking total awesomeness. Anyone want to go in with me on this?



Halloween What Happened?

9979003Halloween is so misunderstood. How did an evening devoted to kids, costumes and candy turn into something so controversial schools are banning it? Now, that I’ve asked that question I think I know the answer. In fact, I can give you a timeline that will prove adults ruined Halloween.  Well, really it’s two intersecting timelines.

Give me a second I’m getting woozy here. I’m having a flashback to 9th grade geometry and it’s not pretty. Is it just me or did that last sentence just sound like the makings of a geometry word problem? The whole two lines intersect and form a linear pair blah, blah, blah. Deep breaths, deep breaths. Alright now I’m better, still a little light-headed, but I’m going to power through. So, let’s get back to the original topic – Halloween.

Let’s first examine timeline A that I will label Gruesome Grown Ups. This is where adults have taken Halloween and over the years have turned it from a focus on costumed kids collecting assorted Hershey’s miniatures into hoochie fest that today has swelled and festered into to a downright tramp-a-doodle-do. I’m not saying we all need to shop the Duggar costume collection of Biblical characters at Hobby Lobby, but come on if you’re a 45 year-old-mother it might be time to retire the French Maid Costume with white thigh highs. Same for you dads. Some things you can never unsee like your accountant in a “hottie Scottie mini kilt.”

To prove my point all I need to do is suggest you walk into any Halloween super store which is doing double duty as a wholesale club for Frederick’s of Hollywood and the lair for the criminally insane. It could just be me, but I don’t think the Star Wars and toddler Disney Princess costumes should be next to a life-size bloody female torso. And this is just a personal aside, but can we all just get over Zombies?

Timeline B is Halloween Whiners (also known as anti-Halloweeners). This is where some parents have imagined Halloween to be a sinister celebration. (Can you say over thinking trick-or-treat?) Using anecdotal evidence I will now flesh out a series of events that illustrate the disintegration of Halloween.

October 31, 2001 –  My son at that time was five  and his school embraced a full Halloween environment. Lesson plans included a study of spiders and Sam the Skeleton was used to teach about femurs and fibulas. By the time he was seven due to parental concern over a “ritualistic Satan based event” Halloween was replaced with a Fall Festival. This was basically Halloween without using the H word.

Two years later the Fall Festival gets kicked to the curb and it’s a Story Book Spectacular where kids are required to come as a character from their favorite book. Most parents didn’t so much as ignore the edict but sashay around it by explaining that Spiderman was in a book and just a little fun fact here there are more than 35 children’s books that feature candy corn as a character. How do I know this you may ask? Well, I had a kid that wanted to go as a candy corn for Halloween so I made sure it was book related.

By 2006 due to parents not “following the spirit of the guidelines” Halloween became “Great American Day” and kids were instructed to dress up as their favorite historical figure from the good old U.S. of A. This prompted a PTO throw down due to parents complaining that they now had to do two costumes for their child. One for school and one for Halloween. Also, there were problems with some families being confused over just which historical figures are American. Two kids came as Jesus. (I don’t think it’s a coincidence that these children were both from  the same family that always brought “Jesus is the reason for the season” cookies to the Winter party.)

By 2007 the school staff had given up. No matter what they did parents complained so October 31 became just another day of reading, writing and arithmetic. And who can blame them? It’s the educational equivalent of “so this is why we can’t have nice things.” Schools don’t have the time to waste negotiating the emotional and politically correct minefield that is Halloween.

Using my timeline as empirical data I believe we can blame the take down of Halloween on the  intersection of the Gruesome Grownups and the Halloween Whiners. Yes, indeed folks that’s all it took for a kid centered event to go poof and disappear like someone cast an evil spell of childhood disappointment.

cover_1-3-21* While you’re enjoying stuffing yourself with your children’s Halloween bounty add to your pleasure by purchasing the latest Snarky book for just 99 cents! All treat no tricks I promise. You can buy it for your Kindle or in paperback on Amazon.  It’s also available for the Nook or you can get it for your Kobo reader. Click on a link and give it a test read.  I hope you like it! 🙂


Dear Snarky – The Trick-or-Treat Throwdown

dear_snarky_logoDear Snarky,

My daughter just got bounced from a Halloween trick-or-treating group! 14 kids and six mothers were all going to go together to trick-or-treat. This has been planned since the first of October. All the girls are going as Disney princesses. My daughter is going to be Anna from the movie Frozen. Yesterday, I got a text message from a mom (who organized the trick-or-treating outing) telling me her daughter now wants to go as Anna and since it would be “weird” to have two of the same Disney princesses trick-or-treating together it would be “best if I found another group to go with.”

I’m so angry and upset for my daughter I wish I could do a throw down. How do I even begin to explain this to a six-year-old?

Signed, Can’t Let it Go,

Dear Can’t,

Don’t be angry and don’t, no matter how much you want to, engage in a throw down. Instead be happy, relieved and joyous. You, and your daughter, have been freed from spending Halloween with a bunch of evil, controlling witches. The fact that an adult would be such a freak about Halloween and what costumes kids are wearing, scares me, like a lot. And seriously, pretty much every little girl is going to be trick-or-treating as either Anna or Elsa from Frozen. The mom who sent you that text must have been off her meds.

The way I see it you can do one of two things – pick up the phone and find your daughter another kid or kids to trick-or-treat with or go just as a family and savor the experience. Also, on the plus side, I have found you can cover a lot more trick-or-treating ground when you are with a smaller group.

I would tell your daughter an abbreviated version of the truth, as in her Halloween has just been upgraded, and celebrate the news with a full size Kit Kat bar. As for that texting witch, I would get 48 rolls of toilet paper from Costco and decorate her house with it.

If you have a question for Dear Snarky – 21st Century Advice With An Attitude – email me at or private message me on my Snarky Facebook page.