An Ode to Moms Who Just Arenít that into Halloween
It’s here. Halloween season. Cooler weather, spooky décor, and fun-size candy bars being thrust at us from all directions. As a kid, I LOVED it! I mean, what kid doesn’t love Halloween? My parents would buy me a costume to help me resemble my favorite character, there were parties and parades at school and I was allowed, nay encouraged, to eat tons of candy. It was a win-win-win.
I always thought I was going to be the type of mom that went big on Halloween. Every inch of my house would be decorated, my family would have creative and elaborate costumes ready by October 1st and festive songs like Monster Mash and I Put A Spell On You would be playing throughout the season. As with many fantasies about motherhood, now that I’m actually a parent, this is far from the truth. And here is my confession, you guys: as a parent, when it comes to Halloween...
I just can’t.
Now before you go accusing me of being the least fun person in the world, hear me out. Here are my struggles with Halloween:
- The Décor. I love seeing other people’s decked out houses, but I’m struggling just to keep mine under control. Between the vast amounts of laundry, the never ending piles of dishes and the toys that only stay put away for a few minutes at a time, I have to hustle just to keep my own house livable. If someone put fake spider webs all over my house, I’d have a nervous breakdown.
- The candy. Every year I buy a type of candy that’s popular, but that I don’t personally like. Swedish Fish, Twix and Twizlers are examples. Then, my husband accuses me of not buying good candy, so he goes out and buys a huge bag of Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, which we both love. Last year, we ate the whole bag before we even got any trick-or-treaters. We had sugar-induced belly aches for hours.
- The costumes. As an adult and mother, the pickin’s are pretty slim for store-bought costumes that aren’t super pricey, super revealing or both. I know homemade costumes are always an option, but due to lack of time (see above), there is no way that’s going to happen.
When my children were really little around this time of year I got away with mostly ignoring Halloween. I ordered matching child and dog pineapple costumes online and called it a day. Now that everyone is school-aged, I know I’m going to have to step up my game a bit. Last year we loaded up the family mini-an and drove around multiple neighborhoods that were known for their elaborate Halloween decorations...and my kids LOVED it. They were absolutely enchanted. So my days of getting away with the bare-minimum for Halloween are coming to an end. I know I have to do something to make this a fun season for my kids..and, honestly, me. After much reflection and planning, here is my plan to tackle Halloween this year:
- I plan to take my kiddo more places! Pumpkin patches, Halloween parades, neighborhoods that go all-out with decorations. Bring it on! I still don’t have the bandwidth to decorate my own home, but at least this will allow us to get in the spirit at places where I won’t have to clean up.
- Candy alternates! Glow sticks, stickers and small toys make great giveaways for trick-or-treaters. Also, they are more inclusive of children with dietary restrictions and allergies (I see you, teal pumpkin!). And the best part? I won’t feel sick for two days because I ate my weight in glow sticks.
- I went on Amazon and purchased a cute, slouchy, one shoulder, jack-o-lantern sweatshirt. Boom! Instant Halloween outfit! Now I can be festive without dressing as a skanky warlock. Woot woot!
So here it goes. I’m determined to take on this season with a new attitude that will allow me to give my kids the fun holiday they deserve. Wish us luck!