How to Survive Halloween with a Toddler and Baby

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:

How to Survive Halloween with a Toddler and a Baby

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.

Happy Halloween!

What are your “tricks” to a successful Halloween night with young children?

Ghosts, Gobblin’s and Candy

With Halloween approaching next week, it’s been nothing but Halloween costumes and candies in stores everywhere! Is it just me or is Halloween becoming more of a “Hallmark holiday” where companies just try to make the most profit they can? I’m still blown away at the number of decorations in stores … they think of everything!

When I was a kid I loved Halloween; dressing up, getting candy with friends, counting the candy at home, sorting the candy and yes eating it too. Now that I have two little girls I kinda don’t like Halloween! Eeekkk! Sorry to the Halloween lovers out there.

  1. I don’t like making costumes because I’m just not talented in that department.
  2. I don’t feel great about going door to door with my kids asking for candy. And by kids I mean my 3-year-old and almost 11 month old.
  3. I feel like “they” are trying to make Halloween as BIG as Christmas with all the massive blow-up yard animals etc. Is it really necessary ??? What happened to just pumpkins, leaves in pumpkin garbage bags and funky lights?

What I do like is the smile that is plastered all over my 3-year-old’s face as she puts on her costume and dances around in her own imaginative world for hours on end before and after Halloween. Lilly is such a kid – she really loves doing everything: dressing up, jumping in leaves, slip n’ slide in the summer, reading, crafts, playing in the snow and growing her imagination.

Lilly and her friend Jack last year:

(my not so awesome ladybug costume)

Lady bug & Gnome

We had our annual Halloween party this weekend from our prenatal group from 2010! It’s a fun time to get everyone together and see all the kids dressed up. This year Lilly has four parties to wear her costume to: day care party, 2 Halloween parties at friends’ houses and then Halloween night!  When I was a kid ( ha ha, that’s sounds funny) but when I was a kid, we did Halloween and maybe one party. Last year Hilary was doing time on the inside as I was 34 weeks pregnant. This will be her first Halloween and has two costumes!

Halloween 2013

Our group, Tinkerbell Lilly and Princess Hilary.

I look forward to the time with my girls on Halloween, seeing friends and neighbour’s and eating a little candy before moving on from this “event”, “festival? What is Halloween anyway?

Stay tunes on how to survive Halloween with toddlers and a baby!

Do you love / dislike Halloween?

What age did you stop trick-or-treating?

Do you go to Halloween parties? Best costume ?

Do you take your kids trick-or-treating or stay home and handout the candy ?

Piper’s Run Weekend

This weekend seemed to go by pretty fast. I didn’t spend any time on email, Facebook or this blog and now in catch up mode! Sometimes I love unplugging for the weekend. I didn’t even carry my blackberry with me – freedom!

It was a busy weekend for our family and went a little something like this:

Friday:

  • Worked 1/2 day
  • Made vegan chili
  • Made Pumpkin/Banana muffins – Yum!
  • Picked up Lilly/made dinner for Lilly/played/normal bed time routine – my husband bathed Lilly while I did dishes/baking
  • I ate dinner at 8pm, crazy late and from Subway. I  just wasn’t in the mood to make anything – oh Friday’s
  • Bed around 10ish

Saturday:

  • Husband had a fire call at 2am – was back home at 4am
  • I was up from 4am until 5:50am
  • 5:50am Lilly woke up and came to cuddle in our bed (somehow I fell back asleep)
  • 7:30am We all got up “Time to get up” Lilly told us
  • Ate breakfast while Sai walked Maclean
  • Got ready for our Halloween Party
  • 10am – 12:30pm Halloween Party for the kids … who I am kidding it was more for the adults to get together and the kiddies to dress up and play together. It was our prenatal group from back in 2010! We still get together a few times throughout the  year. It’s so amazing to see how much they’ve all grown and developed. They all play so well together.
  • 1:30pm Nap time for Lilly and I (we slept for 2.5 hours) – My husband went to the fire hall as he had duty crew this weekend.
  • 5:00pm I crashed again – layed down for almost 1.5 hours – apparently I was exhausted
  • Lilly and Sai had a picnic dinner in the basement 🙂 Awww, wish I had a spy camera on them.
  • 6:45pm I bathed Lilly – not an easy thing to do at 33+ weeks pregnant and bedtime stories.
  • My husband and I watched Grey’s Anatomy since I can’t manage to stay awake on Thursday nights to watch it

Ladybug Lilly and her Gnome friend.

Sunday:

  • I slept all night (okay, minus 4 trips to the bathroom) – but I managed to not be awake at 4am – this was a first in weeks!!!!
  • Lilly climbed in bed with us around 6:30 and we got up at 7:15
  • Made oatmeal for breakfast – man I missed eating oatmeal for breakfast (still haven’t tried overnight oats, which is on my list of things to try)
  • My husband went to “school” for the day/training for ski patrolling
  • Lilly and I went to get a few groceries for “mommy, daddy, Lilly and baby” – Lilly’s words not mine.
  • Then we met our friends Jack and Jolene at the ZOO!!!! Probably our last trip as they close in a few weeks. It was dead – maybe 5-6 cars in the parking lot. The monkey’s were going crazy and the black bear was pacing in his pen. Nice day out until Lilly and Jack both dropped their apples in the sand. Tantrums began 😦
  • Made it home (30 minute drive) without Lilly falling asleep! Bonus!
  • Had Lunch
  • 1:30pm Lilly and I went down for a nap until 3:45pm!
  • 4pm Skype with Nan in England – always a great way to end the weekend.
  • 6pm Ate dinner (Salmon, mashed potatoes, carrots and corn; tofurky sausage for the vegan)
  • 7pm Lilly, bathed, books and off to bed (Daddy)
  • 7pm Clean dishes, folded 2 loads of laundry (Me) and my husband folded a load too! xo
  • 8pm Email, Facebook and a little Blogging

Busy weekend we had but I wouldn’t change it at all.

What did you do this weekend?

Anyone run in a race ?

I miss running a lot … but it’s just not on the table this late in my pregnancy.

Am living vicariously through many runners who blog.

Attend a Halloween party (for kids or adults?)

What are you/your kids dressing up for Halloween?

Piper’s Run