Autumn has officially arrived! It's beautiful with the fall colors, cool evenings, and pumpkins everywhere. And Halloween is right around the corner.
An event like Halloween is a great opportunity to get on the same page as your spouse. Parenting as a team improves the marriage relationship and provides secure boundaries for children when parents are a seen as a united front for children. Discussing expectations and coordinating efforts makes for a more enjoyable and less stressful evening for everyone, especially Mom and Dad. Take a few minutes today to talk about the logistics and safety considerations to make your family's Halloween fun-filled.
Make decisions as a parenting team.
Is your family going to participate in Halloween festivities?
If your family is attending a harvest or Halloween party, how long will you stay?
Are the kids going trick-or-treating? If so, who will take them? Who will stay home to answer the door?
Depending on the ages of your children, how many homes will they visit?
How many treats can each child eat before bedtime?
What will be done with the candy when you arrive home? Where will the candy stash be kept for safekeeping? (The kitchen cupboard is a better place than under the bed, for obvious reasons!)
Consider safety factors.
Choose funny instead of scary costumes. Consider visibility with masks and head coverings. Check the length of the costume to avoid tripping. Opt for closed-toe shoes, even if they don't match the costume.
Trick-or-treat in your neighborhood where you and your children know the residents.
Avoid eating anything while out and about. You don't know exactly what your children may be consuming. The choking hazard is high if they eat while walking.
Trick-or-treat with your children early in the evening. Take a flashlight along for when it gets dark. Watch for traffic on busy streets.
Check through treats prior to the children diving in. Toss candy with open wrappers. Check for choking hazards like hard candy for little ones.
Whether you attend a party or spend the evening trick-or-treating, the sweets will more than likely be plentiful. Decide how many treats per day your children can eat. Encourage kids to choose favorites and donate the rest to a local food shelf.
If you want to incorporate a little learning into the evening, have children kids sort their loot by color or type of candy and make a graph. Add the varieties together to get a grand total. Even Halloween can be an opportunity to put math skills to work!
Have a happy Halloween!
Becky Danielson, M.Ed., is wife and mom of two teenagers. She is a licensed Parent & Family Educator and co-founder of 1 Corinthians 13 Parenting. Becky is the co-author of EMPOWERED PARENTS: Putting Faith First and Parenting Prose, a regular column in Marriage Magazine. She and her family live in the Land of 10,000 Lakes. www.beckydanielson.com & www.1Corinthians13Parenting.com.
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