October 31, 2014 marks the fifth Halloween since becoming a single dad. Once again, I am not quite prepared and only have a few days to go.
We have not yet carved pumpkins or spread fake spider webs all over the front porch. Fortunately, my mom sent a second-hand costume to my son and I avoided going to the Halloween superstores occupying those vacant big box stores across Phoenix. In my defense, my son asked specifically to wear his cousin’s old costume.
Over these years, two things have helped me survive the sugar-infused holiday and may help you.
Invite the Candy Witch to your house. This woman has single-handedly made Halloween awesome (and I do not even remember who gave me this idea to appropriately express thanks and give credit). Here is the deal – much like the Tooth Fairy, the Candy Witch visits homes when kids sleep. She whisks away candy and leaves behind another treat. Could be money, could be an Xbox game, could be just about anything without high fructose corn syrup.
As a bonus, the Candy Witch allows kids to keep up to ten pieces of candy from their Halloween booty, so they get the best of both worlds. It may cost me a few dollars, but saves both of us from having piles of candy around the house. And my coworkers do not seem to mind the fun size M&Ms and Snickers arriving at the office after Halloween.
Find a block party to attend. We have spent each of the past four Halloweens at one of two block parties, complete with pot lucks and group trick-or-treating. Both adults and kids have a great time and you get off the hook from having to hand out candy at your own house. To find one, ask other parents from school. The cost of admission rarely involves more than making some chili or bringing some glow-sticks. My son has not quite decided what he wants to do this year…he thinks scaring trick-or-treaters coming to our house might be fun, but has not issued the final verdict.
Do you have a favorite Halloween hack?