Halloween can be lots of fun for children of all ages and parents too. However, Halloween can also be scary for young children and a stressful time for some parents. Making sure you have the right costume, what treats to hand out, deciding who is going to take the kids trick-or-treating and who will stay home can make for a not-so-fun night for everyone. Here are a few tips on surviving Halloween with small children:
1. Prepare costume 1-2 days ahead. Test out your child’s costume a few days (or weeks) before to make sure it fits and they are comfortable in it. The last thing you need is a melt down about the costume. We have two costumes just in case its super cold outside or too warm at a house party.
2. Parents leave work early. If you can leave work and pick up your children early, do so. Even an extra 30-60 minutes can make the rest of your evening a little smoother. If you boss won’t allow you to leave, see if they will let you work an extra hour the day before or use up overtime hours to leave early.
3. Easy family dinner. Have your families’ favourite meal on Halloween. Whether it’s pizza, home-made mac n’ cheese, soup and sandwiches or something else. If it’s easy to make hopefully everyone will eat it and not fill up on too much candy later in the evening.
4. Dress up too but keep it simple….you’ve got a toddler and baby to focus on.
5. Talk about the night the day before and at breakfast. Remind them they will get dressed up, go outside to their neighbour’s houses, get candy (and say Thank you!), then return home.
6. Skip the bath! Again, just keep the night simple and don’t worry if you miss the bath for one night. A “wash cloth” bath can get them through one night just fine.
7. Set expectations around their candy. They may want to eat it all and that’s up to you if they can. Make sure you don’t eat too much of their candy.
8. Bring a “treat” to your child’s favourite neighbour. They won’t be expecting to receive anything and it gives your toddler a chance to surprise them!
9. Shut down for the night. You can either turn all your lights out and hope no one rings your door bell or leave a bowl of candy outside for late trick-or-treaters. This can avoid waking your little ones when they finally get to sleep.
10. Share your fun! Email, Facebook and Tweet to your family and friends fun pictures of your little ones! They are only little once.
What are your “tricks” to a successful Halloween night with young children?