12 Steps for A Happy Halloween

Have you noticed how some people don’t understand the simple idea of Trick or Treating on Halloween?

seth long via flickr creative commons

seth long via flickr creative commons

It’s not rocket science.

Kids, dressed in their spooky little costumes knock on your door, say “Trick or Treat,” and you give them candy.  Pretty simple, wouldn’t you agree?’

Then, why in the name of everything Halloweenie, do some people have a hard time with the concept and hand out religious pamphlets, canned meat products and hand-drawn sudoku puzzles when the little ones come a calling?



Swallow your ego for one night and when the snot nosed little  bastards sweet children knock on your front door, suck it up and drop a candy nugget in their bags.  If your moral stance on holiday candy bothers you that much, turn off your porch light so the kids avoid your place along with the child molesters on the block.

Don't Be This House from Bethany Byers via flickr creative commons

Don’t Be This House
from Bethany Byers via flickr creative commons

The last thing you want to hear from a three-year old Princess with a church recruiting pamphlet in hand is, “Mommy, was that lady a witch?”  Mommy takes her little one by the hand, and says, “No, but it rhymes with witch, dearie.”

Conspiracy theory activists argue that Halloween is an underground ploy by the medical industry and candy makers to create new swarms of pre-diabetic children. A pancreatic impaired, inulin dependent, circle of life.

As an empty-nester, I take Halloween as a learning moment for parents.  When trick or treaters knock on my door, I give them handfuls of mini chocolate bars.  Sugar ’em up, wind their little costumed springs and turn ’em loose.  It provides the parent escorts an opportunity to practice herding skills with feral children  parenting skills in a real life environment.


image courtesy of dvdtalk.com

image courtesy of dvdtalk.com

To avoid an all out Halloween frenzy, there are a few simple rules, 12 steps, if you will, to enhance your holiday experience:

1. We admit that we are powerless over our children and that Halloween has become unmanageable.

2. Came to believe that one evening of trick or treating could restore us to sanity.

3. Make a decision to turn over our children to tick or treating, based upon assurances that this is the only thing that will make them stop whining.

4. Make a list of houses with full size candy bars.

5. Admitted to our children that we will “sample” the candy they collect.

6. We are entirely ready to have the children forget to say “thank you.”

7. Humbly ask the children to share the good stuff with me.

8. Make a list of all the houses who handed out religious pamphlets and homemade sudoko puzzles.

9. Make amends to those who happily handed out treats by not dropping candy wrappers in their driveway.

10. Continue to take a personal inventory of your children by actually watching them (leashes optional).

11. Sought through prayer, mediation and bribery, that full size Snickers bar in the bottom of your kid’s bag.

12. Having had a spiritual and sugar fueled awakening as a result of these Steps, we carry this message to all parents, and practice these principles in our daily affairs.


What about you?  What tips have you learned to keep from being “That House?”

I’ll leave you with a little something special:  A Primus cover of a Willy Wonka tune:


  1. stephanie710 · · Reply

    LOL….this was great. I’ve lived in my house for 18 years, and never had any kids on Halloween. Busy road. Soooo, I head to the homes of friends to enjoy the festivities. I can’t tell you how many parents I’ve seen walking with open beer cans, etc…just to make it through the night. They can’t keep up with the inevitable sugar high of the kids so I suppose they self-medicate to get to the other side. I LOVE the 12-steps…so spot on. Always enjoy reading your blog. 🙂

    1. For years, we lived is an isolated rural area, where no trick or treaters dared to enter…picture banjo music and middle of nowhere places. Now we live in a suburban hotspot where, I swear to god, they bus the little bastards sweet ones in. This year it rained and kept all but the strong ones from collecting their treasure. Which means I’ll be eating snickers bars until Easter. Thanks Stephanie.

  2. That Primus cover is especially good if you go back up to the guy waving the – what is that anyway? a banana? – and watch him move to it…

    1. I hadn’t put the two together until you mentioned it. That is awesome. At that is supposed to be a hot dog in Bill Cosby’s hand, but it just seemed to creepy to pass up. Thanks, Paula.

  3. Heehee…you had me at “snot nosed little bastards!” Jeez! Have you bought candy in a bag lately? It’s a car payment! Great post!

    1. Thanks Taylor. The very best part of Halloween is the left over bag of chocolate I have squirreled away in the freezer.

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