I was never the mom who dressed up with the kids for Halloween. Honestly, when they were toddlers and babies, it just felt like too much effort. I was so tired that I lacked any creativity, and by the time they were all done up, this Mom was spent. Sure, I took them trick-or-treating, and thought it was adorable. But today, I also partake in the wild costumes, and have a blast doing it. I almost regret not dressing up with them before, because let me tell you - it's the freaking best.
For the past couple of years, we have made Halloween costumes a family affair. As soon as all things pumpkin spice hit the shelves, we start brainstorming what we want to dress up as to fit a certain theme. Everyone has opinions, of course, but we always choose by a vote. One year we were all characters from Curious George, the next Star Wars, and this year the Wizard of Oz. My daughter is stoked to wear Dorothy's ruby red slippers, my son will be a flying monkey, my husband will play the part of the Tin Man, and I will be the Wicked Witch of the West. (What? I couldn't help myself.)
We're all excited to be our chosen characters, and most importantly, to be able to do it together. Before trick-or-treating, we all try on our costumes to get us in the mood. We laugh and act silly together and it helps any stress of the day melt off our shoulders. Then on the big day, I play spooky music in the background as we get all decked out. Together, we help paint each other's faces, do hair that needs to be done, and finally, take no less than 100 pictures posing as a family in our costumes.
As we mosey through the dark streets on Halloween, our family stays together, beaming the entire time. We float from house to house and then at the end, get home only for the kids to dump their pumpkin buckets full of candy onto the carpet. My husband and I plop on the couch and exhale all of the Halloween fun - exhausted but filled with joy. Our kids trade candy back and forth and even toss Mom and Dad their favorites, too.
The energy of Halloween is multiplied because we're all dressing up as a family. We're united, playing pretend, and simply hanging loose together, something that our busy schedules don't always allow on a day-to-day basis. I'm grateful for Halloween because of the family memories built together, not just with the kids. And trust me, I'm well aware that my kids won't want to match good 'ol mom and dad forever. So, for now, I'll not only take it, but revel in it, too.