It’s Costume Contest Time!

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By Paula Deen

Let’s be honest, y’all. It’s not easy to transform a dyed-in-the-wool Southern gal into a Geisha. And in spite of my hair and makeup team working some serious magic, I’m not sure I did those beautiful Japanese women much justice. Michael, on the other hand, makes a damn good pirate. All those years as a tug boat pilot probably didn’t hurt. He was a seafarin’ natural—he swaggered around in his costume and must’ve said “Ahoy, matey!” a thousand times.

Even though I couldn’t look at myself in the mirror without getting the giggles, the costume did inspire me. I took the Asian theme and ran with it by baking a batch of my delicious Fortune Cookies. They’re surprisingly easy to make and are great party treats. They’re especially fun when you take extra care in writing out the fortunes. The cookie I offered to my swashbucklin’ husband read, “You’ll soon discover a marvelous booty.” He gave me a pinch on the rear and announced that his fortune didn’t lie.

These days you can buy just about any Halloween costume. I’ve seen mummies that look as if they crawled right out of the crypt and a Batman so fabulous he must’ve arrived straight from Gotham. But back when I was growing up you didn’t shell out a lot of money for a costume. Even if you did go to Kress or Woolworth’s and buy those thin costumes, they weren’t all that great and you’d probably catch on fire. Instead, we went into Momma and Daddy’s closet and picked out our own outfits. Y’all, there were a lot of hobo costumes back then.

I’ve always liked the homemade costumes the best. They’re so creative. My all-time favorite is when Michael and I went as “Bread and Butter.” Now you don’t see that every day. In fact, I’ve never seen it since! They might not have been the most flattering costumes, but people had a good laugh everywhere we went.

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Homemade costumes are my favorite and they’re usually the ones that win the costume contest! Years ago I made myself into a pumpkin. I wore a black leotard underneath a costume filled with orange balloons. I even had a little hat with a stem. It was as cute as could be, but I couldn’t hardly walk, let alone get my behind in the car! Every time I turned around, part of me kept poppin’, scaring the wits outta me and the boys. That costume might’ve won a contest—if it had only lasted long enough.

So I’ve just shared my most memorable (and kind of embarrassing) costumes, now I want to hear from y’all! The contest has ended. Thank you for all the submissions!

Contest Winners!
With over 1,000 entries, it sure was hard to decide a few winners. Congratulations to our winners on their creative entries and their new Paula Deen’s Southern Cooking Bible cookbook!

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Jennifer Cristofaro
Cabbage Patch Baby

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Barbie Gregory Higgins
The Claw Machine

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Patricia Hossler
Vampire in Coffin

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Megan Bryant Morrow
Ace Ventura, Pet Detective

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Nicolette Flores Corson
Barbie Stylin’ Head

Honorable Mention:

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Misty Everhart McMillion
“Miracle On The Hudson”

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Reader Comments:

54321

Hello Paula!!!! I'm a huge fan and love your style of cooking!! I was trying to enter your costume contest and the web site kept sending an error message....I sure hate that because i hand made my daughters costume and had alot of praise about it, I just wanted you to see it....Thanks for your cooking shows I love to get ideas from you and your sons....

By dionne smith on November 01, 2011

54321

WAYY TO CUTE FOR WORDS!! Especially the cabbage patch baby!!

By Sherry on October 31, 2011

54321

Great pictures and love your family pictures. Everyday when you need a hug or a smile just look up your page Paula and it makes your day;;; Thank you

By Pat Fawcett on October 31, 2011

54321

congratulations to the winners!

By Anonymous on October 31, 2011

54321

Such cute costumes and very creative .. smile

By T Kelley on October 28, 2011

54321

I Love Your costumes & Your recipes , Also Your Show & the Boys too ! Have an Awesome Halloween ! And Best Dishes to You !

By Patricia Daker on October 28, 2011

32121

I love it paula....keep up the GREAT work!!!SN: wish u could come 2the bronx an cook me a meal4 my Birthday that would be sooo nice the best thing that ever happen 2 me

By yolondaflora on October 27, 2011

54321

Paula, you are such a hoot. I would love to sit down with you with a cup of hot tea and biscuits and butter and just laugh for an entire afternoon! Your butter costume cracked me up! God Bless!

By Stacy on October 27, 2011

54321

LIKE ALL OUTFIT

By MARYANN PATTON on October 26, 2011

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Paula Deen
Paula Deen
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hi! wink i was wondering if you could share the recipe for the chiken/grape salad-the one that is pictured on the croissant above? thanks! wink sandra
Sandra Neuheimer-Huller in Chicken Salad: A Southern Staple on April 19, 2014 at 10:37 am

Where do I buy these magazines
in A Basketful of Traditions on April 19, 2014 at 8:22 am

I WISH I COULD COOK. COULD I COME WORK FOR JUST ROOM AND BOARD AT YOUR NEW RESTURAUNT IN PIGEON FORGE FOR THE SUMMER? I WENT TO COLLEGE NOT FAR FROM THERE - HIWASSEE COLLEGE. YOU WOULDN'T HAVE TO PAY ME, I WOULD WORK FOR FREE JUST FOR THE EXPERIENCE. TAMMY LEVAN 19 SPENCER WAY KINGS PARK, NY 11754 HAPPY EASTER! CHRIST IS RISEN!
TAMMY L LEVAN in A Basketful of Traditions on April 19, 2014 at 4:31 am

Hi Bubbles, You have some great tips. Can't wait to read your other blogs! Please give Aunt Peggy a big hug from me and here is one for you! (((HUGS))) See you in May!
Jaci Pardun in 10 Quick Household Tips on April 18, 2014 at 11:05 pm

Paula, I am glad to know that I am not the only person who makes Easter Baskets for their adult children and mail them across the United States. My Daughter lives in Long Beach, CA and I not only sent her a basket but her husband and my granddaughter Reese. We also buy special Russel Stover Bunnies for each child too. My husband has the list in his phone... Sara .. Cookies 'n Crème.... Sidney and Stephen.. Peanut Butter Etc. It one of my favorite things to do for my kids.. no matter how old they get. And passing it along to my Grandchildren. It's even more special to me knowing we share a family tradition. Blessings and Happy Easter!!
Sharon Cason-Card in A Basketful of Traditions on April 18, 2014 at 11:03 pm