Friday, October 28, 2011

Do Your Kids Trick-Or-Treat?

Shall we trick-or-treat?

Moving from the country to the city, I’ve found this question is a lot more complicated than you’d think. When we lived in an urban area, the answer was easy.
Hell no.
I didn’t know my neighbors, my neighbors didn’t know me, and I wouldn’t let my kids eat anything that came out of their houses if my life depended on it. We had a small Halloween party each year (mostly us and the candy cauldron) and that was that.
Then we moved, and things got a lot more complicated. Suddenly, we knew our neighbors. The block around our house was enough to guarantee a full haul by the end of the night. Most of their friends went into the city to trick-or-treat, so there was no point in having a party. No reason not to let them go, right?
I said yes to trick-or-treating last year, and it wasn’t too bad. This year, though, I’m having my doubts.
First and foremost, it’s freezing outside. Literally. There are already several inches of snow on the ground, and the wind has been whipping every night this week. Nothing about that says, “Let’s say no to sitting inside with a cup of hot chocolate and ‘It’s a Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown’ and go running around outside in a bunch of skimpy costumes for an hour or two instead.”
Maybe I’m just too spoiled to living down south, but if you have to freeze your tootie patootie off for a bag of candy, it just ain’t worth it.
Then there’s the candy. I love candy. I love chocolates. I love Starburst. I have the almost overwhelming urge to sing the Hallelujah chorus when someone brings a bag of Smarties home. So I am all about the Halloween candy. 
But there's a catch. There's always a catch, isn't there? I know most of our neighbors, but not all of them. Which means like every responsible parent, I check their candy when they come home. And like every responsible parent, I end up throwing half of it away, even though it’s probably perfectly fine, because it might have been tampered with. The twist at the end of the Smarties was a little loose. There was a tiny tear in the wrapper on their Tootsie Pop.
At the end of the day, it just doesn’t feel worth it to me. But the kids’ costumes are awesome. So maybe we’ll go out after all.
Where do your kids go on Halloween?

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