Gone are the trick-or-treating days of our youth when parents would send kids out at 5:00 with instructions not to come home until the pillowcase was full. Kids wouldn't wait to have parents check the candy before they started to eat. They'd stuff their faces while roving the streets–but not the apples because of the hidden razors and pins. Also, because apples suck.
So in keeping with the Halloween theme, here are some tips to help keep your kids safe while trick or treating.
Accompany Younger Children. Do I even need to say this one? Really? You need me to tell you not to send your kids out to strangers’ houses asking for candy, alone? Then you should also know driving with your eyes closed is also a bad idea.
Being Able To See Makes Halloween That Much Better. Remember the Halloween masks we’d wear as kids? They were pre-formed plastic masks held on to your head with two staples and an elastic string. The string that would break two minutes after putting it on and it only had three small holes for breathing so you’d slowly suffocate while traipsing from house to house but not before you tripped and fell 17 times because the eye holes never matched up with your actual eyes.
Ya…don’t send your kids out wearing those. Use non-toxic and hypo-allergenic make-up instead because the whole seeing while being able to trick or treat is a good thing. And do a test patch before slathering their whole face with white Bozo the Clown make-up. Having to stay home because of an allergic reaction and hives? Not so good.
Make The Costume Is A Good Fit. Seems like a no-brainer but it’s tempting to buy a costume in a bigger size so you can get an extra year out of it. Don’t do it. Otherwise on November 1st, your kid is going to be wearing a whole new costume for six to eight weeks.
As an addition to the rule above, make sure your child’s costume is flame resistant. And parents, real candles in pumpkins is old school. It’s right up there with pointed metal lawn darts and kids riding without seatbelts in the back of the station wagon. Use glow sticks or a battery powered light.
Both traffic laws and the laws of physics still apply on Halloween. If your children run out onto a street and get hit by a car, they'll get hurt. Make sure your kids walk, don’t run, from house to house, cross the street in groups at a designated cross walk and never assume the right of way.
To make them more visible to drivers, put reflective tape on your children’s costumes and trick or treat bags or carry a flashlight.
Examine all treats before you kids can eat. Throw out any that are not wrapped, have loose or torn wrappers or have holes in the wrappers.
And if you have a child with allergies, be sure to go through every piece to ensure it’s nut free.