A Halloween Plea


Sorry for the all caps but when I tried to envision a kinder, more flowery way to urge all of you parents out there to dress up with your kids this Halloween I totally scrapped it and felt that for once, I would be succinct.

Why dress up? It’s about the kids. You’re a grown adult. Adults don’t dress up. How foolish!

Those are all things you’re saying to yourself. Those are also all things that my husband has said to me time and time again when I’ve begged him to dress up. My answer to all of that:  Who cares? It’s so fun! And the kids love it too! Perhaps I have a higher threshold for embarrassing myself. It may have something to do with the fact that I do it quite regularly and I’m accustomed to thinking quickly on my feet with a self-deprecating comment to alleviate any awkwardness. But I don’t think that anyone needs to feel embarrassed about dressing up with their kids on Halloween.

DIY coordinated Halloween costumes? Be still my Halloween-loving heart.

Not to mention there is just something that’s plain fun about dressing up with your kids at Halloween time. “Kids” meaning 10 and under. I have no idea how kids start reacting to their parents’ actions when they’re in middle school, but I suppose “mortified” is a fairly good guess. This means you only have a few trick or treating sessions to really soak up all the Halloween-y goodness with your kiddos.

The past two years I’ve dressed up with the kids and I’ve got to say, my only regret is that I didn’t do it from the moment AJR was born. Last year the kids got the biggest kick out of my hot pink wig as I dressed up as complementary mermaid to their pirate and parrot. The year before that I somehow suckered Joe into dressing up as a crayon with the kids and I and they STILL talk about it. Sadly, I DO have photographic evidence of his costume (AKA blue shirt that said “crayon”) but the only way I could convince him to do it was if I promised to never post any pictures. So I’m being a good wife and keeping that promise to him. It was adorable though.

Is Olivia’s face saying that she’s totally embarrassed by me?

I am sure I looked completely ridiculous strolling down the streets of our town with highlighter-colored but I am being honest when I say I COULD NOT CARE LESS. I was in the Halloween spirit and dressing up alongside them made me absolutely giddy. I’m sure the fact that my travel coffee mug wasn’t filled with coffee contributed to that – which is another huge perk of trick or treating in the ‘burbs with your kids once they’re out of the baby baby stage – but I digress.

This year we started the conversation about Halloween costumes in August. Doesn’t every family get at least a two month jump on it? AJR declared he wanted to be a pirate again, which sort of disappointed me at first. Don’t you want to try something new?? But then I rolled with it. Olivia originally wanted to be a ghost (adorable of course) but then I gently suggested Tinkerbell to play into her love for the movie Peter Pan (which she calls “Peter Pants”) and she immediately switched gears saying that Daddy could be a ghost instead. Another gentle suggestion that AJR not only be a pirate, but be Captain Hook was shot down. He did not want to be Captain Hook, only Captain Anthony, which is fine by me. Halloween is indeed about the kids and there’s only so much pushing you can do to steer it towards a specific theme (a conversation that my husband had to have with me when I was leaning towards a Ghostbusters theme). I will be fashioning myself a Peter Pan costume and our dog, Ruby, will be Wendy. Yes, I am the crazy lady that always incorporates their dog into the family costumes. It should be noted that Ruby does not trick or treat with us but she is merely a participant in the family photo op.

Forget the slutty Halloweens of your past adult life. This is good, clean fun with your kiddos as you make memories together. Don’t you think your kids would think it’s totally awesome to see their normally straight-laced parents indulge in a little fun and whimsy with them? Don’t you think you would look back fondly on that Halloween when you all dressed up as The Incredibles and had the best time ever? Do you think I could lay the guilt trip on any thicker for those people still on the fence about dressing up?

We as parents are witness to so much of our children’s fun but don’t often get to be a participant in it. Now is your shot! Take every advantage! I don’t care if you go as simple as wearing a super hero t-shirt to coordinate with your Captain America and Wonder Woman trick or treaters or whether you commit to a full-blown costume and corresponding make-up. Just do something – anything! Ask your kids what you should be. Brainstorm costumes together. If your kids are like mine, they’ll find it hilarious that mom is dressing up.


PPS: Seriously, just do it. And then tell me how much fun you ended up having.

PPPS: Convince a group of your awesome friends to dress up with their kids, too. You can all look ridiculous together 🙂


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