by Sara Marchessault
For parents, Halloween can be fun…and a little bit of a hassle. Costumes, candy buckets, deciding where to trick-or-treat, and often staying up late on a school night are all decisions that we deal with for the sake of fun. Or maybe for the handful of chocolate that just happens to get set aside for the grown-ups who make this night of magic happen.
This year my own kids will be seven and five for Halloween. As we prepare for the big night, I can’t help but reflect that I don’t have that many Halloween’s left. Not as a mom with young children. In a few years they’ll be trick-or-treating with friends and then not going out at all. Before that happens it would be great to create one special, highly memorable Halloween. How can we do that? By choosing a theme and creating family costumes.
Listed here are six suggestions for family costumes for Halloween. What others can you think of? Any of these costume ideas may be either purchased or made at home. Don’t forget to check out secondhand stores too.
The Wizard of Oz. A family of four could do this easily with Dorothy, Scarecrow, Tin Man, and the Lion. Have a puppy? There’s Toto too! For a bigger family there are a slew of characters that could be added. Glenda. The Wicked Witch. The Wizard. Munchkins.
Star Wars. The galaxy far, far away never goes out of style and there is also a stream of characters for which it’s relatively easy to create costumes. Luke, Leia, and Han are the obvious three, but with the addition of The Force Awakens you can add Rey, Finn, and Kylo Ren. Don’t forget C-3PO, R2-D2, and BB-8.
The Little Mermaid. Does your family have a tendency to break out into song? Then this light-hearted family costume theme may be a great choice for you. There’s a father, several daughters, a crab, a fish friend, a bird, a prince, a sea witch…the list goes on. This can work well for other fairy tale favorites too. Have a family of boys? Mom can be Snow White and dad and kids can be the Seven Dwarfs. Or Prince Charming, Cinderella and her mice friends.
Christmas. Halloween is sort of the doorway into the holiday season. Why not have mom and dad dress up as Mr. and Mrs. Claus and the kids as elves? These costumes might work best for a cold weather climate. Other holidays would work too. A St. Patrick’s Day theme with a family of leprechauns would be fun.
Something on the creepy side. Zombies. Vampires. Witches. Werewolves. Perhaps one of each. Choose a scary theme and create a family of dark creatures for a spooky Halloween.
Where the Wild Things Are. Choose one person for Max and everyone else gets to be a Wild Thing. This would work for other classic pieces of children’s literature too. Try Dr. Seuss for inspiration with The Cat in the Hat or Green Eggs and Ham.
The key to an idea like this is to find a theme your kids get excited about. Introduce the idea by talking about your favorite stories or characters and listen to their suggestions. Look for a catalogue with Halloween costume ideas that you can peruse at home, or spend some time browsing for ideas online. Decide if you’ll purchase or make costumes and start by making a list of what items you’ll need. Most importantly, don’t forget your camera on October 31st – this will be one Halloween you’ll want to take plenty of photos.
Sara Marchessault is a writer, publisher, and dedicated diarist. She is 110% dedicated to helping her readers create a life full of joy and capturing memorable experiences in writing. These days her own journals are getting lots of details about playing with her kids and the ups and downs of being a mom. Learn more about her work at saramarchessault.com.