Friday, October 31, 2008
The Candy Tax
We had a great Halloween. I helped drive Michael's class to a play this morning, and took pictures of class parties for the yearbook this afternoon. As I was driving kids home from the play, one girl begged me to take her trick-or-treating "right now." I told her that wasn't possible and she explained that she wanted to go right now because they aren't allowed to trick-or-treat anymore because candy isn't good for you. I thought that was a bit sad.
When I came home from taking pictures this afternoon, I saw we had some early trick-or-treaters in our backyard:
When the kids got home from school, we loaded up the van and drove downtown to trick-or-treat at the businesses there. This is probably the third year we've done that. I love it because it's light outside, there's plenty of candy and lots of costumes to see. Allison kept going up to complete strangers and giving them hugs because she liked their costumes. She's my most exuberant child and her friendliness can be downright scary sometimes.
Eliza thought Halloween was the greatest thing she'd ever seen. She can be so funny and shy sometimes and so bold othertimes. Tonight was her night to shine. She'd say, "Peas?" in a cute little voice or "teet!" and then say her own little version of "Thank you" as she walked away -- "Di do!". I think she got 50% more candy than the other kids just because she was so cute. Michael was pouting through a lot of it because he'd been eating candy and then denying it (he was in trouble for lying, not eating the candy!). He stomped and pouted, but we wouldn't let him trick-or-treat until he apologized. After a while, he finally told us he had been eating candy because he was hungry. It was sweet to see how quickly his face brightened after he told the truth.
After trick-or-treating downtown, we headed home. I'd put dinner in the crockpot, but everyone was too excited to eat (or perhaps too full from sneaking candy!). DH stayed with Harmony while I took the other kids around our culdesac. After that, I offered to take the older kids out through the neighborhood, but no one but Lillian wanted to go. We tracked down our neighbor (thanks, Christian!) who let Lillian tag along with him for a while.
We get a lot of candy because of all the kids (Don't believe me? Check out the picture below!) but we impose a strict candy tax. The rule is they can eat as much candy as they want on Halloween night itself, but after that, all candy belongs in a big bowl up high. I dole it out a little at a time for homework snacks, practicing piano prizes, and the like. It usually lasts quite a while that way, and I don't feel like my kids are going overboard or ruining their teeth.
I feel sorry for families without toddlers. Eliza's joy and excitement this week has made this Halloween one of the best ever. Besides trick-or-treating, Eliza's other favorite part of Halloween was her jack-o-lantern. She had the small, cute one, and she was so thrilled when we carved it for her on Monday, laughed with delight when we put a pacifier in its mouth, and sat by it for a long time after it was lit tonight.