By Kerrie McLoughlin

Don’t you just love Halloween?! It is exciting (dressing up and all of that sugar!) and scary (trick-or-treating in the dark!) and a little bit gross (pumpkin goo!). My parents started Halloween traditions with me, and my mom still calls every year to make sure we know when the Charlie Brown Halloween show is on. Like me, I’m sure you enjoy discovering new traditions with your own kids, like ‘booing.’ Halloween might look a little different in 2020, so fun family traditions are more important than ever.  Read on for some great Halloween tradition ideas, and do not forget to take lots of spooky pictures!

Pumpkin patch. Start the holiday off right with a visit to a real pumpkin patch and pick out your own pumpkins and funky decorative gourds. Arizona Parenting has a list of some of the best patches to visit in Arizona right here: 2020 Halloween & Harvest Happenings

Pumpkin seeds. Toast pumpkin seeds instead of throwing them out because they are chock full of antioxidants, fiber, vitamins, and minerals, not to mention they make a great crunchy snack. Head to allrecipes.com for recipes and how-to instructions, as well as an incredible Cinnasweet recipe.

Pumpkin carving (one now, one later). We usually wait until Halloween Day to carve our pumpkins since we want them to look fresh. This year, we will also carve a few earlier in October so we can enjoy them before they wilt. Check out zombiepumpkins.com for over 240 designs and templates for help with carving your pumpkin with a cool face other than the usual grinning jack-o-lantern.

Booing. Last year, we ran to the front door to see who was there and found… nobody. But there were plastic cups full of Halloween-themed treats like pencils, erasers, spider rings and candy. A note was left behind, and it turns out we had been ‘boo-ed.’ We never found out who boo-ed us, but we promptly went to beenbooed.com to print out our flyers and instructions on how to boo our own set of friends in our neighborhood. The kids loved waiting until dark to sneak over to their friends’ houses and leave treats undetected.

Halloween shows and movies. Depending on the ages of your kids, watch a Halloween-themed or scary TV show or movie, like It’s the Great PumpkinCharlie BrownCoraline; or The Haunted Mansion.

Colors. Do lots of orange-and-black things, like paint your daughter’s nails orange and black, eat Devil’s food cupcakes with orange frosting or color Halloween pictures you print from halloween-coloring.com.

Dress up! Check out thedailygreen.com’s cool slideshow that shows 25 ideas for homemade costumes made from recycled materials.

Trick-or-treat, smell my feet.* 
Some families head of to the local trunk-or-treat. Some leave one parent at home to hand out candy, but we all go together since I’m a Halloween junkie. My plan is when my kids do not want me to go anymore, I will become that woman who hands out the full-sized candy bars and cans of soda to trick-or-treaters at my home!

Indulge! End the holiday with a mini sugar coma for you and the kids. I love watching my kids count and trade candy, and then eat their way through each stash! I also take a picture of my kids sitting in their huge piles of candy for a great scrapbook keepsake.

*Due to the current pandemic be sure to see what the recommendations for trick-or-treating are in your community. Be safe and have fun!

Watch out! Kerrie (www.thekerrieshow.comis the mom of five who will raid any candy stash.

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