Next week is Halloween. Unfortunately it’s on a Wednesday when the kids are already crazed with homework and another busy week of activities, so this year will be challenging. In some parts of the country it will already be getting cold so we have given that fact some consideration as well.
As a food allergy dad, I can say honestly that this day is both exciting and fun but also conjures up some self-pity around my children having food allergies and living without. The tips below are designed so that everyone can enjoy this day both at school and when the candy-grab begins…
- Starting this weekend, talk to the kids about Halloween’s schedule…we come home, do homework have dinner and then set a time limit for trick or treating. Set the expectation so they can process that they are coming in to bed, before other kids.
- Buy candies to hand out that are sealed and labeled properly. You may also want to buy candies that are allergy friendly. If your kids have an allergic friend, you may want to consult their mom to find out what they typically buy (each retailer and region has different products so it’s best to ask a friend as they will know your area and what is available).
- We take the candy our children collect and trade it for a toy or game and give them our own stash of candy to supplement. Even for non-allergic families, this is a great way to trade out those calories and sugar for something that lasts longer.
- If you have children that scare easily, you may want to avoid those really scary houses. Our children have enough anxiety, no sense in having them up at night with nightmares.
- Give your children some time to hand out candy at home too. It’s great to always get candy, but giving is an important lesson.
- When preparing your house for Halloween, you can really blow the bank on zombies, lights and bones. Set a budget and stay within. Each year, you can build on your display, but don’t get caught up in the hype. It’s been a very tough 5 years…let’s be fiscally responsible and try to be creative with what you have.
- Get the kids home, turn off the lights and get back to routine…the next day is a school day.
- For allergy folks and non-allergy parents, the candy you give your children to take to school as a treat should still follow any allergy protocols set up by the school. Allergy moms and dads – you might want to reach out to your child’s teacher to find out how the class is celebrating to ensure your child is not left out.
Have fun, be safe, wear the right clothes for the weather and to be seen in the dark. Wishing you all a very enjoyable Halloween.