It's Halloween. Time to dress up and go door to door, gathering candy and other treats from neighbors.
We didn't do Halloween when I was growing up. I think I got to go trick or treating just a few times and it was junior high before that happened. I always felt like I was missing out. I didn't like it and I didn't agree with my mom's choice. But I respected it - just like I respect other parents who don't do Halloween.
However, we do enjoy Halloween. Especially since we make it an opportunity to do good in our community.
I first did this in college. Friends and I wanted to go trick or treating - on a whim. But grown college kids can't dress up and go trick or treating without getting dirty looks. We were lamenting that we couldn't be grown up trick or treaters... when it hit us... let's go trick or treating but ask for donations for the local food pantry!! We totally scored. We weighed down the trunk of one of our cars and we even got a few treats (candy) for ourselves along the way.
A few years ago, we did this in our own neighborhood. A local church has a food pantry that we like to support and this was a great time to ask for just a can or two, just a box or two, of something extra from the pantry.
So when we ask for "something good to eat," we're really asking for something that will help out a family who has been hit with hard times.
And I think that makes it a holiday worth celebrating. For us, it's not about pranks or costumes or candy. We enjoy those things (well, we aren't pranksters). But I know that I most look forward to Halloween because it's another opportunity to teach my kids some compassion and also demonstrate that they have the ability to make a difference in their world.