One of the best things about becoming a parent is introducing your child to the fun of holidays and special occasions. While Christmas is almost universally the favorite holiday of parents, Halloween ranks highly on the list for parenting fun.
Your baby’s first Halloween is especially fun for parents who enjoy picture taking opportunities – and what parent doesn’t? There is nothing more adorable than your baby dressed up in her first costume. Even if your little one is only weeks old, dress her up. The pictures and memories will be worth the effort.
Your child’s first Halloween may not be the one that is most exciting for her. Toddlers really start getting into the excitement of dressing up and seeking treats, and won’t remember the one you celebrated for them a year before. If you have a toddler, the sky is the limit for costume ideas and activities.
Halloween costumes for babies are everywhere. You can find them at most baby clothing stores, party stores, and online. Select a costume for an infant that is not too warm, and be sure to put a lightweight onesie on underneath the costume to prevent scratching from the material. Infants are more tolerant of hats and hoods than younger toddlers, but avoid masks as these can be uncomfortable for baby and possibly a suffocation hazard.
Toddlers need a costume that is not especially bulky. It is possible they will have a strong opinion on their costume, and if so, humor them.
But keep their safety in mind. Toddlers are rather unsteady on their feet already, so avoid dangling material that can trip them up or catch on things. Toddlers might be willing to try a mask, but make it a very lightweight and small as they are not good at adjusting it to see more clearly. Make sure your toddler wears comfortable shoes with his costume unless you plan on carrying him around your neighborhood.
Finally, the sun starts to set and it’s time for the real fun of Halloween. When taking little ones trick-or-treating, stick to homes of friends and family. Toddlers and especially infants have a short attention span and certainly don’t need more than a token collection of goodies. The real purpose of Halloween is to show off your little on in her costume, so take her places that matter and where you can enjoy a brief chat. Make the evening short to get your child to bed before she gets too worn out from the excitement.
Perhaps the best way to celebrate Halloween for very young children is to have a Halloween party. Invite your friends over with their little ones. Encourage costumes, and have a glorified play date. Arrange simple games and activities for toddlers, and just let babies explore and enjoy the company.
Take plenty of pictures and serve refreshments to the adults in the crowd. A Halloween party in the afternoon leaves plenty of time for exclusive trick-or-treating, but gives you and your little one time to enjoy the costume, visit with friends, and have a few goodies along the way.
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