Holiday traditions define us as families. Halloween is no different. Here are ten of the more popular family Halloween traditions.
- Hand out candy to trick-or-treaters.This is a tradition my family began when the kids were too young to go trick-or-treating themselves.
- Go trick-or-treating.When the kids were old enough, we let them choose their favorite costumes to wear for Halloween and take them around the neighborhood that evening. Our neighborhood is large so we’d visit homes until the kids got tired or drive the kids on Halloween night.
- Carve a pumpkin.On Halloween, the kids loved to reach inside and pull out pumpkin guts. Using a safe carving tool, they would cut a scary or happy face into the pumpkin. They sat the pumpkins on the front step with candles inside for trick-or-treaters.
- Watch scary movies.After the kids returned from trick-or-treating, they would eat candy and the entire family watched a scary movie. When they were young, it would be cartoons like Charlie Brown or The Simpsons. Later on, it was Friday the 13th or Scream.
- Go to church.An alternative to hosting a Halloween party is to attend one. Each year our church would hold a Halloween party for the kids and their families. They provided games, candy, and costume contests.
- Fix scary desserts.The kids and I loved to bake. On Halloween, the family baked creepy desserts like mud cupcakes with Gummi worms on top or spider Oreo cookies. Eyeball punch is a treat if you can get past the look of them.
- Reading scary stories.I have a book of supernatural tales that I read to the family on Halloween night. We’d keep the lights on if they thought they’d be scared. As they grew older, they opted for lights out and flashlights.
- Throw a Halloween party.Parents are always looking for an alternative to traditional trick-or-treating. Someone in the neighborhood can throw a party. Every family contributes to the meal and helps with chaperoning.
- Roast pumpkin seeds.Instead of throwing away the guts, separate out the pumpkin seeds and roast them. Add a bit of salt and they make the perfect Halloween scary movie snack.
- Decorate the house.In my neighborhood, everyone goes all out for Halloween. Houses are decorated with orange lights, fake spider webs, skeletons, fog machines, and scary voice makers. We’d decorate with glow-in-the-dark ghost window stickers, spooky lights, and scary carved pumpkins.
Some Halloween family traditions last a lifetime but most change as kids get older. Pass these traditions on for the next generation to celebrate Halloween.