When I was a kid, Halloween was one of the most exciting days of the year for me. My brothers, cousins, friends and I would go house to house in our costumes and see how much candy we could haul in. We lived in the suburbs just outside Montreal, and the neighbourhood we lived in always had the best (and the most) candy (at least that’s what we thought when we were kids!). Sometimes we’d have to stop off at home to empty out our pillow cases (pillow cases are stronger than plastic bags or those cute (yet cheap) plastic jack ‘o lantern/pumpkin shaped buckets we used to lug around. The handle would always break after the twelfth house or so. We got smart and started bringing pillow cases instead!
It was a sad year when I finally felt I was too old to go trick or treating. At least I had a baby brother who was (and still is!) eleven years younger than me! I figured that if I took him out trick or treating, at least he’d share some of his loot with me!
When I was teaching in Japan and in Toronto, I would dress up and go all out for my students every Halloween. The students and I would decorate the classroom. They’d learn about the history of Halloween. We’d have costume contests and a big party. Since all of our students were ESL students and from countries that didn’t celebrate Halloween, it was so very new to them. They had a blast!
Hubby and I would dress up in costume, put on some spooky sound effects and music, decorate the house…and we always did a haunted house motif. My first year on the Island, I bought enough candy and little gift bags for 300 kids. We only had 10 trick or treaters! I didn’t realize that in the country, there were so much fewer children around. I suppose if we lived in one of the other townships where there were houses closer to each other, we’d get more trick or treaters. We live in the countryside where our neighbours are stretches and stretches apart.
This being Little One’s first Halloween, I was thinking about what kind of family traditions we can start for her. I know she will not remember this Halloween because she’s still a baby. I know she can’t even go trick or treating because she can’t even eat candy!
I was at my friend’s house on Friday and while Little One and her son were having a play date, we were catching up and enjoying some conversation that did not involve “Say Mama!” or “Time to eat! Open up! Yummmmm!”. My friend invited us to partake in their Halloween tradition with them. In the past few years, they have stopped giving out candy because they don’t really get any trick or treaters in their area. Along with some other friends of ours, they just take their kids trick or treating in “town” and then they all go to the Halloween party at the community center/hall.
Now that we’ve got a little one, I think it is so important for us to do things as a family and create lasting memories for our little girl. Yes, she’ll only be a few weeks short of a year old (or 9 months corrected), but I’m so excited about her first Halloween! This time last year, I was on strict hospital bed rest and couldn’t even see the doctors’ kids and some of the other moms’ kids all decked out in costume at Mt. Sinai.Just testing out Little One’s first Halloween costume. She’s such a cute little ladybug!