I don’t know about you, but I can already feel the excitement pulsating from my kids and its only Monday. We have four more days…four more long days for all involved… until Halloween. My kids have been planning for weeks now. The costumes are picked out, the candy baskets have been unearthed, and pumpkins sitting on our doorstep waiting to be carved.
Here are some simple tips for a happy Halloween with fewer meltdowns and more memory making moments.
1. Get on the Same Page About Plans and Expectations
Everyone has a plan or expectations about what they think Halloween should be. Often times children act out because either they don’t know the expectations or what they were planning is completely different than mom or dad’s plan. Communication is key to getting on the same page about what Halloween is going to look like. Here are some things to think about and talk about with your family:
- What events do family members (kids and parents) want to participate in?
- When will the events take place?
- How are these activities benefiting my kids and my family?
- What are the expectations about candy and sugar intake?
- Why do we have these expectations about candy and sugar intake?
2. Talk about the “scary side” of Halloween.
While Halloween can be a lot of fun, there can be a dark and scary side to it. As a family, we choose not to engage in this side of the festivities, but not all the families around us have made that same choice. We talk openly about what we are seeing and what friends are talking about. Discussing what is real and what is make-believe, as well as, why we choose not to participate in those activities creates a safe place for my kids to talk openly about questions they have. These conversations help take away some of the anxiety or confusion they may be feeling and gets us on the same page.
3. Eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
Help balance out the extra intake of sugar and keep meltdowns at a minimum by eating three well-balanced meals. This includes grown-ups! I know I can rationalize the extra calories I’m in taking in the candy bars I’m sneaking from my kid’s stash by skipping my normal meals, but all that equals is a mama with low blood sugar and trust me, its not a pretty picture.
4. Be present.
It is so easy to get caught up ourselves in all the craziness of the parties, decorations, food, and everything else Halloween. But at the end of the day, our kids will remember us being there, laughing and enjoying the moments with them more than any “perfect” party we could throw or “out-of-this world” costume we could ever create. Here is a great questions to ask yourself; “is this a necessary stress or is this something I can let go?”