I don't remember Halloween being all that big of a deal when I was a kid, but as a parent it's morphed into a marathon of festivities. First there was the Halloween party at work, which I'll pass on describing due to my "you don't . . where you eat rule"
Then came a dance at YaYa's school that the Mrs. described as "better than most of the college parties I went to" (which, I might add, is saying a lot j/k).
YaYa went as Dorothy, as the Wizard of Oz remains one of her favorite movies year after year. She almost won for best costume, but someone not nearly as smart/pretty/cool got the prize. Meanwhile Middle Child and I sat home and watched Hocus Pocus - a movie, in retrospect, that's a wee harsh for a two year old to see.
Next on the list was nighttime Trick or Treat. Long illegal in Milwaukee, there's a few neighborhoods that close off the streets and (for a per child fee) allow you to trick or treat after dark. We've gone for three years now, and it's great - a far cry from the feeble daytime trick or treat I grew up with. YaYa had to ditch Dorothy in favor of the warmer Barney costume, but she didn't seem to mind. Middle Child was a pro, chugging along house after house and only pooping out after 4 or 5 blocks - and garnering comments on her "Toto" costume at every stop!
Next up: the standard daytime trick or treating. I went against my nature and took the kids up and down a whole stretch of the neighborhood. We encountered ghosts, Grimace from McDonalds, and a host of other ghouls and goblins . . Afterwards we just stayed home and passed out candy. It was, of course, Parker's first Halloween. He outgrew two - TWO - costumes, but thankfully our neigbor came through with a Dalmation suit at the last minute.
Gandhi moment of the day: when we ran out of candy with an hour left to go,YaYa volunteered to give away her own stock rather than just close up shop.
Anti-Gandhi's of the day: any number of folks from 'other' neighborhoods who drove their kids - sans costume, makeup, and in most cases EVEN A BAG - to plunder other areas of town.
Trick or Treat where you like, but if the parents can afford a car, they could show they care - or pretend to - by spending a few dollars on their kids.
Argh, I sound like Scrooge. But it gets old after a few years, ya know?