Molly, Jack and The Great Pumpkin at Plant World.
8 Tips for A Stress-Reduced, Happy Halloween
You can't control the costume...Begrudgingly accepting this will make life easier
I have spent weeks agonizing over what Jack will go out as for Halloween, however I'm aware that come Friday night, it will be a game time decision as to whether or not he actually uses the pizza costume we've spent hours working on. And that's his choice. I won't be thrilled, but I'll take a deep breath and enjoy him going out as "Jack" (preferably at least in his Batman rain coat) if that's what he chooses.
Eat a Healthy Dinner Before
I know that a lot of candy is going to get consumed by everyone involved. I can negate some of this by having the kids fill up on a healthy meal (that they'll enjoy) when they get home from daycare before the festivities begin. Prime choices are home made macaroni and cheese or crockpot chili by creating somewhat of a base of food for them to sugar-coat as the evening progresses.
Go Out Early
The closer to bed time you Trick or Treat, the more likely you are to have meltdowns because of exhausted children who are eyes deep in CandyLand. Going out early also means that you need to worry a little less about older, sometimes rowdy kids.
Have More Adults Then Children
By having several adults in rotation (for us usually Grandpa, Grandma and Aunt S) you can have a team handing out candy back at home as well as extra hands and eyes to make sure road safety is being listened to, umbrellas are overhead and adorable photo opps aren't missed.
Take Breaks if you Need To
We don't go too far from home yet, but if Trick or Treating gets to be too much and it gets *ahem* challenging for a little one to follow rules, maybe it's time for them to go home and hand out some candy for a while and try again a bit later. This is another reason why going out early is a good idea, it takes bathroom breaks and mandatory intermissions into account.
Don't Be Afraid to Divide and Conquer
If last year is any indication of what's to come this Halloween, Molly is a bigger fan of Halloween. This means, likely, that she'll be out Trick or Treating for longer then her brother. As much as I wish we could all trick or treat together this year, I suspect Jack will be happier handing out treats at our house on his own turf and that's okay too.
Have Fun and Remember It's Just a Day
We put a lot of pressure on ourselves to make holidays special which can set unfair expectations for everyone involved. At the end of the day I need to keep reminding myself that Halloween is just another day and the important part is making it enjoyable for the kids, whatever their version of the perfect Halloween may be. There is always time for us to celebrate by eating copious amounts of candy and watching Zombie movies when they've gone to bed.
Other Activities can Boost Halloween Enjoyment
By making the day about the journey and not just the destination you can stagger activities for kids to ensure Halloween itself isn't a "Make it or Break it" event. Kids can enjoy pumpkin carving, Fall Fairs and Halloween movies (parent approved) in addition to Trick or Treating.
What are your Halloween Traditions? What should we watch when the minions go to bed? The choices lined up are: Nightmare Before Christmas, Zombieland and Warm Bodies.
For Halloween Costume ideas click here
For Halloween life hacks click here
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