Well here we are. It's Trick-or-Treat soon and it's disgusting out. Here in Ohio, it's raining and freezing cold and muddy and gross. I've got two kiddies under three, so the best part of trick-or-treat was always going to be running outside and swinging a pumpkin bucket. And you know what? Some kids are just skeeved out by talking to strangers or putting on a costume (I'm talking to you, Mr. Pants). So even though Trick-or-Treat is pretty much the most amazing night of many school age kids' lives, some littles can take it or leave it.
If you are discouraged about the Frankenstorm ruining all your fun or you have a kiddo that would rather be duct taped to the floor than go up to other people's houses (both!), let me give you a few ideas!
- Carve/Paint MORE pumpkins: Be honest. Did you carve your pumpkin yet? Or did it rot on the porch. Tell Mama Pants the truth. I mean, not that ours did. (Ours totally did.) Regardless, pumpkins get cheaper the closer you get to Halloween and who says you should only carve pumpkins one time? If someone said that, they were wrong. Cause that's a dumb rule. Go get a few more pumpkins and have some fun painting and carving them.
- 2. Go shopping: Get the babes gussied up and go to an indoor shopping center. (Are they still called malls?) No extra layers or bundling needed so their costumes will be seen for the magnificent creation that they are instead of hidden under raincoats, umbrellas, layers and boots. PLUS, I betcha the stores at your mall have employees with bowls of candy if that's your thing. Then take in some lunch with your little superheroes at the food court. Because eating at a food court is totally the equivalent of a bucket full of candy when we are talking about nutrition. And there is something magical about a food court experience for kids. It's like the food is made by Santa Claus. But if you choose not to hit the food court...
- 3. Have a floor picnic/tea party: Encourage your people to get super dressed up. That includes you too, mom/dad/grandpa/grandma/others. Everyone must come to the floor picnic looking amazing. So don't even try to get out of that or you will be pooping on the party. Don't be the party pooper. Slap on some ridiculous clothes and funky make-up and join up. Lay out a blanket on the floor and have a Halloween themed lunch or tea party. Tell silly ghost stories while you eat!
- 4. Go and make someone's day: Now this will take a little investigation on your part. There just might be a place to Trick-or-Treat after all. Some senior citizen complexes have trick or treat inside. This is an everybody wins option. The kids get to beg for candy and the seniors are delighted to have young ones around. When I was little, my mom would take us to a nursing home or senior living complex to sing Christmas songs and visit with some folks who may not be getting a lot of visitors. Why wait until Christmas?
5. Have an Old Fashioned Halloween Party: Halloween doesn't have to be all about the big beg-fest. Have your kiddies make some art for the walls and put on some jams. Dance and play. Better yet, don't just dance. Bust out the Ghost-style Freeze Dance (description below). First have a costume photo-shoot then get your party on.
Here's a sample play by play for you:
A) Make the art/ decorate the house.
B) Bob for apples toddler style. If your little person is too small to plunge their face into a bowl of water (like mine), just put some apples in a bowl and show them how to pick them up in their mouths. I guarantee you they will think this is the coolest thing they have ever seen. Laughing will ensue and probably some growling dog impressions. Once all the apples are properly destroyed and slobbered on, cut 'em up and make an apple pie or apple crisp together.
C) Freeze Dance! Ghost Style. Did you know that toddlers and preschoolers think it is HI-LAR-IOUS to freeze while dancing? Oh yes they do. Did you also know that they love to put things over their heads? It is true. Get some old sheets or tablecloths, cut a few holes and do some ghost dancing. Shout out "FREEZE!" and freeze yourself. I betcha you only have to show them once. Oh and make sure that at the end everyone collapses into a heaping ghost pile because if I know toddlers, they love to fall down. Good stuff.
D) Eats: No need to get all fancy with the food. Just make it something they really like. You will get awesome parent points if you make it something they aren't always allowed to have. I mean, it IS Halloween after all. But if you want to go all out do a Pinterest search of the words “Halloween Food” and just try to pick from the seventy billion ideas that come up.
E) Bring it down a notch. Finish up your party with whatever you want. Silly ghost stories or songs or both. A candy/prize hunt (think egg hunt). Camp out on the floor with some candy corn and watch It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown. Anything at all. Just be sure that you are in this: The most important part of any indoor party with littles is that YOU are having a blast. Kids love it, and I mean they LOVE it when the adults let go of their adult stuffiness and get silly. Go all in. Be a kid with them. You will find you had a crazy amount of fun.
Now I want YOUR ideas! What kinds of fun are you having with the tiny humans in your life this Halloween?
Photo Credit: vdrg.
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