Halloween is a time of year my family just loves! We decorate the house with pumpkins, mummies, bats and skeletons and spend the 31 days of October embracing all the fun that Halloween brings. With four sons, you can imagine the amount of excitement Halloween brings our family. When my oldest son, William, was born in 2004, we started family Halloween traditions. For me, it’s all about creating memories that will grow and last with my family forever. Together CountsTM is all about making time to share everyday moments and special activities with the whole family – and Halloween is a great opportunity to turn spooky activities and treats into family traditions.
There are four traditions we do every October and have been doing for the last eight years. These are very special traditions to me, and my dream is that someday my sons continue these with their own families.
1. Jack-o’-Lantern Spectacular
Our local zoo has this amazing Halloween Spectacular every year. They create over 5,000 jack-o’-lanterns and display them throughout the zoo – the flickering candlelit display is the most magnificent and beautiful sight. We’ve been going since William was four weeks old, and now he’s eight! It’s a great activity to do with the family because you’re walking throughout the zoo and enjoying the wonder and beauty of the pumpkins and animals. Check your local zoo for seasonal fall activities.
2. Corn Maze Craze
Oh, yes…even though we get lost in the corn maze every year, it’s still something we cherish as a family. There is a farm about 10 miles from our house that hosts the best corn maze! We go every October and vow we won’t get lost, but always do. It’s become a family joke between all of us that whenever we see a maze, we’ll get lost in it. The best part is, even when we are in the maze and trying to get out, we’re laughing and have a blast. We end up walking over a mile once we’re out because we’re on our feet and staying active. It’s the most fun way to put the principles of Together Counts into practice and achieve energy balance as a family!
3. Pumpkin Carving
My husband is a master carver – he loves nothing more than buying 8-10 pumpkins and carving them into scary or funny faces. We always put the pumpkins outside for the neighbors to see and enjoy. The best part is, after my husband scoops out all the seeds, he roasts them. It’s two activities in one! As my sons have gotten older they’ve become better and better at helping, too. For my littlest guy, I just allow him to paint a little pumpkin – he loves doing that. For me, the best part is seeing their faces light up with excitement when the finished pumpkins are done!
4. Applesauce! Applesauce! Applesauce!
Along with this time of year comes apple picking. We always go in October and stock up with bags of apples and then come home and make delicious applesauce. It’s the one thing all of the boys will eat and devour. My husband has a special recipe that we all help him with. My job is to peel and dice up the apples and the boys help with the cinnamon and sugar. We love cooking as a family and teaching our boys about nutritious eating and we also appreciate how it leaves our house smelling delicious!
(see also Halloween Sweets as Treats)
This is just the most amazing time of year for family togetherness - I cherish these times and embrace every moment.
What are your family’s favorite fall traditions?
Audrey McClelland, a social media consultant and brand advocate is the founder of MomGenerations.com, an online destination for mothers. She is the mother of four boys – William (6), Alexander (5), Benjamin (4) and Henry (3). She speaks frequently on the topic of motherhood, fashion/beauty and social media at blogging conferences, Twitter conferences and social media mixers. She lives in Providence, RI with her husband and four sons.