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Monday, October 7, 2013

The Best and Worst Things about Halloween by Drew Kobb

As a kid, Halloween is one of the most beloved holidays. No, you don’t get school off. But you do get an excuse to dress crazy, ring doorbells, and eat candy until you’re sick. For an adult, Halloween is not always so fun. You have responsibilities and commitments, you can’t bother to be weighed down by the festivities. Isn’t it sad that we get so wrapped up in our adult world that we can’t take the time to just have fun with our children? Given there are still some horrible things about Halloween (we just can’t avoid those), but there are also some really great parts to enjoy as well. Here are some of the best (and worst) things about Halloween.

Going Trick-or-Treating
As a kid, I couldn’t understand why my dad was so excited to take his kids out on Halloween. All I wanted to do was go around with the rest of the neighborhood kids. I didn’t want to feel like my dad was there to babysit me. But now that I’m older, with children of my own, I understand why it was so important to him. It’s the same reason why you can’t help but spoil your children just a little extra for Christmas or why, no matter what, you will always go to their school plays or soccer games. You don’t want to miss out on any of the excitement and magic of childhood.
There is a down side to trick-or-treating though. When you’re the parent, you have to be the responsible one. All this candy? It’s not really intended for you. The costumes? It’s cute to dress up with your kids but it can be pretty embarrassing for them once you reach a certain age.
The other negative aspect of taking your kids out on Halloween? They want to go no matter the weather. Where I grew up, sometimes it snowed on Halloween. And we made our dad take us out anyway. He was always a good sport, though. He never let a little bad weather keep him from being part of his children’s memories.

Scaring Children
If your kids love a little good-humored fun every now and then, it can be a blast to get them into the Halloween spirit with some extra spooks. You can wear a scary mask, hide around corners, or expose them to their first (age appropriate) scary movie. The downside to all this fun? You might end up with scared kids sleeping in your bed every night. For this reason alone, I refuse to let my children watch anything that I think they might be sensitive to. I need my own rest and I can’t get that with their little bodies taking up my bed.

Eating Candy
This is a no-brainer.  If you take away the ghouls and goblins, what is Halloween about? Candy! Not only do you have your children’s leftovers to rifle through, there’s also the candy from your own house. As the adult, you get to buy whatever type of candy you want to give out. So if your favorite treat is Snickers, go ahead and buy 3 bags. You only wound up using one bag? Oh darn, I guess you’ll just have to eat the rest of them.
We all know the obvious dark side to this though. I often refer to October, November, and December as my “fat months.” There is so much great food to eat and it’s just too hard to say no. You might want to exercise some of that self-control though and save yourself some trouble for when you’re trying to slim down for next summer. Don’t get me wrong, you can indulge some (I definitely do) but don’t go too overboard on this.

Holidays are the perfect time for family togetherness. Even the ones that seem as insignificant as Halloween. There are frequent opportunities to spend quality time with your children. Hopefully you won’t let the few negative factors keep you from getting in on the fun. Even if you feel like you’ve knocked on a million doors in Vancouver or handed out candy to every child in Houston, there will always be fun parts of the holiday as well.

Drew Kobb, in addition to studying civil law, loves long distance running and considers himself a health and fitness enthusiast. His interests range all over the medical field, and Drew highlights that range on his blog, Dr. Ouch.

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