It doesn’t take long in this life to realize that there is Halloween is a magic time.
By the age of 3 or so, we begin to grasp the concept, all of the costumes and decorations and candy. It is a time of year, we begin to understand, when our imaginations can run as wild as we let them.
I remember getting so excited for Halloween long before the special night was upon us. Trips to the grocery store with my mom were new opportunities to feed my frenzy. Rows and rows of costumes awaited me there and every year I was thrown into a vortex of indecision.
Do I want to be Fred Flinstone or The Six Million Dollar Man?
Is that a Mighty Mouse costume??!!
Is that a Yoda??!!!
The time leading up to the holiday is a special one for kids. And for parents, too, if we just let ourselves get swept up in it..
But the big night itself is really where it’s at.
Heading out into our neighborhood’s streets and lanes with our own kids, we take a breath of that cool evening air, we drink it in in deeply as we set out toward the first porches and doors of the evening, and it all tastes unlike any other night of the year.
Because Halloween night has it’s own certain sparky taste, its own electrical atmosphere.
Because Halloween is magic.
And hanging out with our children and sharing that magic with them is all the proof you will ever need.
Anticipation 1 of 20For kids, Halloween cannot come fast enough. They want to put on their costumes the very day that they get them and then every day after that, too. I did that. You probably did as well. I remember getting ready, putting my costume on long before sunset, long before trick-or-treating time was upon us on every single October 31st.
The Transformation 2 of 20Seeing ourselves transformed into a pirate or a bear or Superman was always pure magic. Looking in the mirror is never more fun than that first moment on Halloween when we are finally fully decked out. Then, when you continue to dress up as an adult, you find that the same feeling still remains, huh?
Imagination Movers 3 of 20Our wildest dreams come true on Halloween. We are not only allowed to imagine ourselves as our favorite ghouls or superheros or animals, we are actually ENCOURAGED to become them! What could be better for a young mind than that? In a lot of cases,it is the beginning of a lifelong love affair with dreaming. And that's a good thing.
Happiness 4 of 20All holidays bring about a certain kind of happiness when you're a kid. But Halloween stands alone in a way. It's a kind of happy that seems reserved just for us when we're a child. It's OUR night, to dress up and hit the town. It's OUR night to be the star of the show. And naturally, that makes any kiddo happy.
Halloween Parents 5 of 20For us older folks, Halloween allows us to peer in to the magic of our children's little minds. We get to see them glow at the prospect of becoming a tiny witch or Dora the Explorer. Seeing them light up, and then helping them with their initial trepidations when it's time to knock on some doors, it's all just a crazy beautiful ride that really encapsulates what parenthood is all about if you ask me.
Babies 6 of 20Of course, we never forget our kid's very first Halloween. Babies and tiny tots look so damn cute in their first costumes. And their slightly bewildered expressions around the holiday are priceless. And yes, they might cry a little at some of the spookier stuff, but they'll be okay. Plus, a little fright is what Halloween is all about, right?!
That Door To Door Magic 7 of 20Combing our own neighborhoods with our children and watching them approach this house and that one is a pretty cool experience. We encourage them from behind the bushes. We whisper at them,"RING THE BELL!" We remind them to say 'thank you'. And, in a way, we are watching them grow up just a little right before our very eyes.
Passionate Kids 8 of 20There is nothing greater than watching and experiencing our own kid's passion. And Halloween brings out the best of it. Witnessing them decide what exactly they want to dress up as is one of the coolest things I can think of. And getting to help them make that dream a reality is some special icing on the cake, I say.
Lovin’ Pride 9 of 20Maybe it's just me, but I get all blustery with big pride when I watch my little girl ring a doorbell and start shouting out,"TRICK OR TREAT!" before anyone has even opened the door. I can't really describe exactly WHY I feel that way, but I do, 50 times over on Halloween night. I guess I have to chalk it up to the magic again.
The Shy Ones 10 of 20Some kids are a little shy at first when it comes to Halloween. And that makes sense. There's a lot to take in, isn't there? All of those other kids dressed as vampires and ghosts and TV characters, it can be a bit overwhelming for any small mind. But that's where the magic of candy comes in, I reckon. Because once we convince our shy ones that there is chocolate to be had, and lots of it, well, that usually helps break the brittle ice.
Fellowship 11 of 20I love joining up with a gang on Halloween night if we can. There is something really awesome about traipsing around the 'hood with your kids and a bunch of other kids and parents that really compounds the excitement in the air. Plus, I like the looks on people's faces when they answer their door and there is a small army of trick-or-treaters there to greet them.
The Pictures We Take 12 of 20In all of the hoopla surrounding the big event, try not to forget to take some pictures of your little ones in their Halloween regalia. They make for some of the greatest photo treasures we will ever own, I think. Looking back on them, years and years from now, I know that a million memories are gonna come flooding back over me. I wish I had more pics of when I was a Halloween kid.
Watch Them Closely 13 of 20If you want to really soak in the magic of Halloween, you have to make it a point to watch your kids really closely. Monitor the way they do little skips and jumps on their way to the next house on your rounds; when a new costume enters a room make sure you watch your kid's eyes as they try and take it all in; and notice how fantastically antsy they get in that long moment after they ring a bell or knock on a door, as they wait for it to open. The magic is in the little things, especially on a night like Halloween.
Kids Together 14 of 20One of the best things about Halloween is seeing young children react to each other. In every pack of Trick-or-treaters there is a always a leader and there is always the youngest one trying to get through the pack to the candy being handed out. Kids are so funny and entertaining when they interact and Halloween is a perfect time to be able to observe them in the 'wild'.
Holding The Hand Of a Princess 15 of 20Something I love doing is holding my daughter's hand as much as I can as we go from house to house on Halloween night. I'm not sure why, really. But I think it's because I'm so excited to be a part of such an enchanted evening. And that deep inside, I know that right around the corner, the day is coming when I try and grab her tiny fist and she just jiggles it away, like all 'big kids' eventually do.
Our Own Halloweens 16 of 20As parents, we carry so much of own experience into anything we do with our kids. Halloween is no different. We can watch them getting so giddy about the hours ticking away toward trick-or-treating time and we can close our eyes and recall almost EXACTLY what they are feeling. That's a strong connection to have. And it speaks volumes about what I'm talking about when I mention Halloween Magic.
Daddy’s Big Idea 17 of 20Of course, remembering our own Halloweens so vividly can also lead to some pretty cool costume ideas from Mom or Dad, right?!
Growing Up 18 of 20What starts as walking right up to the front doors of houses alongside our children ultimately ends up in us being told to wait in the street. And I guess that's okay, too. They grow up. I guess at that point, we're just lucky to be tagging along at all, aren't we?
The Pile of Loot 19 of 20No tale of Halloween's magic could possible be complete without mentioning that pinnacle moment when your kiddos dump out their trick-or-treat bags onto the kitchen table or the living room floor. You remember how awesome that felt, right? You remember trying to make your little brother or sister trade you all of their Charleston Chews for all of your candy corn...don't you?
At The End Of The Day 20 of 20We could argue for years about what the best magic moment of Halloween is. We all have different perspectives. We all have different memories. But, when your little one finally passes out after an evening of costumes and candy and laughing and spooking, take one last look at them as they dream away. Because, that right there, might be the most magic moment of 'em all.
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