5 Parenting tricks to keep Halloween fun
Some families find Halloween a terror-filled event from start to finish. Whether it is arguing about candy limits and costume choices or fighting over where kids are allowed to go, and how late to stay out, trick or treating can definitely bring some angst.
We believe that kids are capable and the easiest way to make this, and other holidays fun and enjoyable is to set everyone in the family up for success. It really is all about how your family sees this holiday.
1. Decide what is right for your kids. This might be different depending on their ages, abilities, responsibility, etc. Once you know the basic boundaries (based on your values and experience,) it will be easier for everyone to work together.
2. Tell your kids your expectations and let them work within them. If you know that they can visit houses within a two-block radius, let them decide which blocks they want to visit within the time limit you set.
3. Know how the evening will go before you get to evening. When are they allowed to start trick or treating? What time do they need to be home? For older kids – who is picking them up from the party and when? Deciding all of these things, along with how much candy they get to eat means that there are no surprises and you can stay calm when the sugar highs and lows kick in.
4. Make a plan about candy ahead of time and stick to it. This is another way to help teach your kids that they are capable. Sarah Remmer outlines some great strategies in her blog How Halloween Can Boost Your Child’s Relationship with Food.
5. Be realistic. Your kids are very excited; they will likely eat more sugar than normal and be tired at the end. Knowing this, if things go a bit sideways, don’t get sucked into the drama. State your expectations and stay out of the power struggles. Turn the situation from you against your child to you and your child against the situation. “We’ve got a problem here…how can the two of us work it out?” or “Sounds like we disagree, let’s figure this one out in the morning.”