How I Found My Way Back to Macaroni Kid

Taking Back Family Fun Despite Covid

By Melissa Wudzki, Publisher, Toms River Macaroni Kid October 24, 2020

Seven months ago, which now feels like a lifetime, our lives changed. Quarantine started and sadly, while we are all trying to make the best of it, things have not returned to normal.

I can see within my own family how we have all been affected - the added stress, the uncertainty and anxiety. It has been a long bumpy road in my house.  With many of those early days leaving us feeling like there was no reason to get out of bed, to trying to find our way back to some sort of routine - there have been ups and downs. 

In September, with school and activities restarting (my kids are hybrid), it started to feel a little more normal. Yet, I had trouble finding my way back to all of our Toms River Macaroni Kid families.  Without events to share with you or host for you, I didn't know how to fit Macaroni Kid back into this new version of daily life.  No Back to School Fashion show, no library events to share with you - I was at a loss.

Then October hit and honestly our community's desire to celebrate Halloween gave me a glimmer of hope for my Mac Kid future. I scrolled social media and could feel the craving for some Halloween fun from our local families. Out of that came our Boo Baskets and our Friendly Ghost Visits, although I have to admit I totally borrowed the idea for the ghosts from my former PTO. 

We were a week into October already, and with the lapse I kind of forgot where to start. I wondered if there would be enough time for me to pull it off. As I started to hear back from businesses that wanted to be included in the fun, my excitement grew. So did the chaos in my house. Pumpkin buckets, spider rings, halloween pencils and fruit chewys took over my dining room. I was in a mass panic to try and find ghosts for your lawns. It seemed like Halloween was already gone from local stores, as we were all looking to immerse ourselves in something we remembered as normal.

About a week into delivering the Boo's and ghosts, it happened. A moment when I remembered in my heart why I loved Toms River Macaroni Kid so much, why it was meant for me. Honestly it touched me so much, I had to write this article to share it with you.

I had sent the ghosts to a friend's house and in the morning she sent me a bunch of pictures of her son posing with each one, mimicking their faces.  She then told me he wrote a letter to the ghosts.  It was adorable and sweet and seeing his face so lit up reminded me how much I love seeing those smiles, and having a little something to do with putting it there. But it was the next morning, as I went pick up the ghosts so they could visit the next family, that I was so truly touched.  There in the dewy and extremely wet grass between the stakes of one of the ghosts I spotted an envelope.  It was soaked but I knew what it was. I took it home and set it outside to dry. A few hours later my daughter saw it and asked what it was. So I opened it with her and I smiled because it was the cutest drawing of our friendly ghosts! It was amazing to me that the pencil marks had survived the wet grass but they did.

Then more pictures followed of Boo Baskets and Ghosts and smiling happy kids! I'm so very grateful for the opportunity again to bring a little bit of light into your families during these ever changing difficult times! Besides our fun stuff, there have been 2 weeks in a row that our calendar is filled with amazing things to do locally with your kids! 

Toms River Macaroni Kid is back! My head is exploding with socially distanced Candy Cane Hunts, You've Been Elfed and Candy Cane my Yard so stay tuned! And thank you to Lucas for giving me my Mac Kid mojo back.    

Shout out to our TR Mac Kid sponsors...always jumping right in to help us bring family fun our communities!

Toms River Macaroni Kid with the help of these awesome local business partners have worked together to fill 150 BOO Baskets to distribute in our communities.

Toms River Macaroni Kid BOO Baskets would not have been possible without the support and generosity of these amazing sponsors.