It's Halloween! I love Halloween, it's my favorite holiday of the year. I love the costumes, the creativity, the scary stories, and of course, the candy. When I was a kid I had to miss a lot of Halloweens because I was always sick this time of year, but I would remember the excitement of trick-or-treaters coming to the door. I also remember my own mad dashes around the neighborhood, with my full pillowcase thumping against my legs, usually on a wet or chilly night. Streets were lit up with porch lights, as everyone had them turned on, and the sidewalks were so crowded that you often had to wait your turn to get up on a porch, as there would always be a group ahead of you and one behind you as well. Trick-or-treating seemed to last forever, until you finally couldn't carry anymore (or your parents were tired of traipsing around), and you went home to dump your booty all over the living room floor. When I was a kid there were these stories of poison candy or razor blades stuck inside, so police stations would scan your candy, or your parents would just go through your stash with a fine tooth comb, and if anything looked slightly sketchy it went right into the garbage.
Now, I love handing out candy. I love seeing all the kids in their costumes, and you can sense their joy, and sometimes shyness, with this holiday. I always overbuy candy, in hopes that the huge crowds of yesteryear find their way to my doorstep, but for some reason, they don't come in droves, but in trickles. I am not sure why this has changed, as it is my generation, the generation who grew up owning the streets on Halloween, parading their kids around. I am already looking forward to next year, when my little guy will have his first Halloween. He will not be a year old yet, more like 6 months so I am sure we won't trick-or-treat, but a costume will still happen. I already have one in my mind, but that is subject to change, a million times I am sure.
I think when passing out candy though, there are a few things to remember. First, not every kid is the same. Some have special needs that change their Halloween - my nephew is one of these children. He is nonverbal although gaining more words everyday, and has a difficult time saying Trick-or-treat. And he is not the only one. I found this graphic that I always like to pass on every year.
I also read an article earlier this year, and thought what a great perspective about those older kids who come to our doors, half dressed in costume, half not. Check it out here. One last thing - this is a time of year when many pets get lost or injured, So keep them safe as well this year. Here are a few tips to keep them safe and sound.
So while I wait for the time I can take my son trick-or-treating, I will keep on passing out candy to all comers, big or small, one and all. This is a holiday for everyone, a time for imagination, creativity - a time to dream and pretend, and most of all, a time for fun.