Last night my husband and I took our two boys out for Tricks or Treats, as they say in the Peanuts Gang. It was a gorgeous night; the air was crisp but not too cold and a huge fall moon hung in the sky.
For the first few doors our two-year-old, dressed as a hoodless Jowa from Star Wars (he was mistaken for a Ninja more than once), was not quite sure what to make of things. He was more interested in exploring the yards and front steps of the houses. He held on to a single roll of candy from the first house as if it were the last candy on earth. Once he realized that he was being given treats at every house, he was running from door to door (often in the opposite direction we were headed in) and at times I had to run to keep up.
Meanwhile, dressed as Iron Man, our four-year-old was shouting “TRICK OR TREAT” before even knocking or ringing a bell! He seemed to think that the door would magically open just because it was Halloween and he was in costume. Both of them, with only a small bit of reminding, said “thank you” after receiving their candy AND often threw in a “Happy Halloween” too.
We passed by a few houses that were dark. I am sure the reasons for them being dark are unique to each home: working late, shopping, off trick or treating in another neighborhood with no one to hand out candy back at the house (which was actually what was happening back at our house, since my husband and I wanted to be with the boys, and seriously, taking two kids under five out on Halloween is a two person job).
Where was I? Oh, the darkened houses. Yeah, they reminded me of how I spent Halloween as a kid. As the child of Jehovah’s Witnesses, my Halloweens were spent either at the Kingdom Hall (if it fell on a Tuesday or Thursday night) or at home in the dark. Yep, you read that right: IN THE DARK. We would shut off all the lights, hunker down in the kitchen or dining room, and wait out the trick or treat seekers.
So, last night when I would see a dark house I found myself looking for the flicker of a candle and wondering if there were some kids being told about how Halloween is bad. Because, I have to say that sharing it with my kids has made me realize that it isn’t, it was a happy night. Every single house we went to was welcoming and amused by the antics of my children, and generous, and full of laughter.
It was a Happy Halloween indeed.