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When I was little my Nana and I lived in a building with 90 condominiums that looked like 12 other buildings in the same complex that now has over 100. Our building sat on a golf course. When I took my own kids there, they were shocked at how I could live in such an unfriendly kid environment — where did you ride your bike? There was only one big driveway always busy with cars pulling in and out, if I did ride back and forth it felt like I was getting nowhere. So, my bike just stayed on the patio with the lounge chairs in the corner, getting rusty from the thick Florida air.

There was also no place to Trick or Treat. The neighbors never bought candy. No other children lived anywhere in the complex, so my grandmother drove me a half hour to my cousin’s house to spend the night In their neighborhood walking the dark streets by flashlight collecting candy we all traded at the end. And after all the excitement of the journey, I ate my now and laters and I dreamed of later.

I dreamed up a neighborhood where my kids would never have to go further than the house next door to start their Halloween fun. Where they would be a part of a gaggle of kids safely moving about from house to house all dressed up ready to collect their loot with Unicef box in hand —of course because we can’t forget — all children are not as fortunate.

So this little cul-de-sac where my kids Solace and Truman are spending the greatest and most formative piece of their childhoods is my dream and Shannon O’Leary Lowell, Jamie Lowell, Beth Howard Corcoran, and Damien Corcoran are the dream team I imagined as I thought about what I wanted for them. Shannon started the fun by putting together a group list on messenger asking when we all had time for a pumpkin carving party. And we all decided a date. We brought tarps and carving knives snacks — I brought Monster Dip — my famous guacamole and a candy tray —but it was the neighborhood that was the sweet treat.

This was our first all neighborhood event here, this is my Love letter to my new community that I am so grateful for because it really feels like a dream come true.

For me this is the Heart of Halloween.

~Rachel Yee, MA

All Love Letters’ are pristine, posted as they were received.  Please forgive any spelling and grammar issues, since the writing was done in the throes of love, and sometimes love doesn’t care about commas or misplaced letters.

Being marvelous and being brave means you’re willing to believe in the wonder of who you are and take the risks you need to take to Bloom Breathe BE Be authentically YOU Break the mold Expand Evolve Flourish Grow Heal Fail Learn Live Thrive Transform Triumph Trust Succeed .