It’s not even October yet, but no doubt if you have walked into your local grocery store or department store, Halloween has puked into the aisles. Aside from an appearance that is disproportionately early in comparison to the calendar date, it is also likely, if you have a young child like I do, that Halloween is beginning to become a focus of their thoughts- talk about costumes, trick or treating, and the joys of a candy-infused psychosis. This year I hope to contribute to my daughter’s Halloween festivities by sharing with her some potential costume ideas. Now I am by no means a costume expert or a Halloween aficionado and frankly my only bragging rights in relationship to this holiday is that for the last three years I have dominated my friends Jack-o-Lantern carving party with a creative flair for the demonic and threatening pumpkin designs, but nonetheless, I feel I might have the ability to contribute to the costume discussion. There are a few points that must be considered in my planning process.
First, I would sway her away from something “typical”. If she is hoping to stand out, hoping to be memorable, she’ll want to consider something outside the box. Let’s avoid the princess and fairy outfits. The streets at Halloween are filled with pixies, fake wings, and enough Princesses and Tinkerbells that you’d think Disney has taken out stock in the October holiday.
Next, it’s important to consider costume ideas that are not too expensive. The costume she wears this year won’t fit her next year. Heck, it might not even fit her anymore at Thanksgiving. As such, why spend a ridiculous amount of money on something that within weeks will be passed on, packed away, or stored in the garage sale designated section of the basement? Even better, our apartment is riddled with items that we could use, free of charge, to create some unique Halloween attire. I may not even have to leave home to get the costume in order.
Lastly, I want to consider that ultimately, the purpose of her evening outing is not for the costume. I mean, she’s not going to the prom. This is about the bounty. This is about what is brought home. This is about finding the house that gives full size candy bars and then walking around the block and coming back two more times that evening to get more candy bars. The costume is secondary; however, the costume can contribute to the goodie load. Cute and cuddly is a beneficial approach- something that speaks to either the heart or the humor of the homeowner. She might be able to gain an extra freebie from a heart warmed or chuckling neighbor and that equates to daddy benefiting from an extra Mike and Ike packet or Butterfinger at the end of the night.
Keeping in mind these requirements, here is my list of suggested costumes that I will share with her:
1. She could be a librarian. Load up her wagon with books, give her an old pair of daddies glasses and have her tell the other kids, “Shhhh!” anytime they say “Trick or Treat at the door”.
2. Mommy I shrunk our child! She could dress up in a pair of jeans and a t-shirt from either of her parents and walk around pretending to have been shrunk by accident in some strange home science accident. Even have her complain about not being able to go to the office the next day if she is can’t be restored to her regular size.
3. Duct Tape Mummy. Actually on second thought that doesn’t seem like a good idea.
4. A Domino. Get an old box out of the basement, cut out a head and arm holes, paint it black and white. There you go. Who doesn’t like a costume modeled after beloved games. Maybe I could figure out a Scrabble tile too?
5. Daddy on the Toilet. Get her old potty training toilet out of the basement. Using a belt and some duct tape, attach the toilet and then strap the belt on so it looks like she’s sitting on the toilet. Set her on the wagon, with her pants around her ankle (although she’ll have shorts on) and give her a newspaper to pretend to read. Let the hilarity ensue. The downside is someone would have to carefully pull her around the neighborhood but think of the joy when she can yell for someone to light a match?
Halloween is going to be great and I know regardless of what she wears, we’ll have a great time and we’ll have our fill (and hopefully a few extra pieces for Dad and, I suppose, Mom as long as she leaves anything gummy and with peanut butter to me). In your own planning for Halloween, keep in mind that aside from the perfect costume, you want to consider safety. Check out the CDC website for some tips to enjoying Halloween. What do you think are the odds she’d go as Daddy on the Toilet? That’s my favorite. I’ve got to teach her instead of saying “Trick or Treat” to say “Pull my Finger”.
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