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Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Halloween ideas

All ready to go out!
Halloween has been a time-honored celebration for hundreds of years.  Its roots go back to Celtic traditions of honoring the dead and the end of the harvest season.  A far cry from what it is today  :)  Children look forward to Halloween as a time to dress up in scary or cute costumes and eat large quantities of candy.

Our world is no longer the safe place it used to be (if it ever was) but that doesn't mean that you and your family still can't have a fun time.  If you're not comfortable with taking your children around neighborhoods, knocking on strange doors and having them beg for candy, there are several options to consider.

1. My personal favorite...For years (at least 30), our church has organized a "Trunk or Treat" activity where church families come to the church parking lot, park in a very large circle with car trunks pointing inward.  Each family can decorate their trunk whatever way they wish.  All the children go trick or treating to the different cars where candy and goodies are handed out.   The children have the satisfaction of getting to go trick or treating and getting their candy and the adults have an enjoyable time socializing.  It can be as simple or fancy as you wish.

2. Little children don't need huge bagfuls of candy so you can scale down their activity to just visiting grandparents and other relatives and close friends.  If the candy is really for you  :)  consider going to the store the day after Halloween and buying yourself the kind of candy you want...probably at least 50 percent off too!

3. Start an annual tradition to go to a pumpkin patch or corn maze on Halloween.  Let the kids dress up in costumes and spend an afternoon getting exercise and running off all their energy (hopefully!).  Pick up a fresh pumpkin while you're there to carve at home.

 4. Several malls and communities plan trick or treating activities, again so kids don't have to go to unfamiliar places after dark.  Usually held in the afternoon, they have games, activities, contests and of course, candy.

5. At home parties (not for little children) with scary movies, popcorn, hot chocolate, apple cider and of course, candy.

Cute little kitty  :)
6. At home parties for families whose kids have allergies, illnesses and food sensitivities.  Look for some of the "tame" Halloween movies that are geared towards children (like "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown") and fix treats that all can enjoy.  No one should be left out.

Whatever you do, take lots of pictures and have the kids brush and floss before they go to bed!


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