Here's what I love about Halloween:
- Taking M. & P. around the neighborhood trick or treating in a costume of my own. It's the next best thing to being a kid again.
- Running to the door to oooh & aaah over the fairy princesses, laugh at the clowns and shudder at the skeletons who shout "Trick or Treat, Smell My Feet." Oh no, wait, it's my brother who still says that.
- Deciding what to hand out. Should you choose something you like or dislike? This is based on whether you want to enjoy the leftovers or shun them entirely, and if it's the latter, how big a bag do you want to carry in to the office the next day? How much of it do you want your own kids to eat beforehand? How healthy a treat is too healthy? After all, you don't want your house to be avoided as word spreads that you're giving out veggies. (We got great reactions to the juice boxes we gave out a few years ago, so that's become our de facto treat. Yay, one more thing crossed off the to-do list!)
- Doing the candy check when we return home and bargaining over which bits my kids are willing to let me have.
- Silly games like bobbing for apples and biting the donut on a string.
Here's what I don't love about Halloween:
- The fact that stuff has been in the stores (and therefore on my kids' minds) since the end of August. We haven't got the budget for back-to-school and Halloween in the same month.
- I know the grocery stores are counting on the fact that whatever candy we buy now will be eaten and replaced many times over. I'm struggling to get to the gym on a regular basis to work off all the old fat I'm already carrying around. I want to save any new incoming fat for Christmas cookies, thankyouverymuch. I won't even mention the cavity M. just had filled.
- Why are all the boy costumes in my kids' size range scary, bloody, inappropriately not funny, or all three? Halloween is all about pretend and make-believe. I don't know about you, but I don't recall ever pretending to be an axe murderer, a corpse being eaten by rats or a fart meter. Sure, there are a few superheroes and Harry Potter is still popular, but you have to look really hard to find them. When I do finally consent to go costume shopping there's going to be at least one tantrum, I just know it. Personally, I'm going to push costumes like the ones appearing in Family Fun's latest issue or on their website.
- Ditto for the decorations. Do I really need window clings that look like bloody hand and footprints or a shuddering skeleton chained in a cage to have a Happy Halloween?