Feeling like we have been living in scary times for months now, Halloween just seems like a natural extension of life today. As I reflect on the CDC suggestions, the opinions of the young children I interact with everyday and my neighborhood FB feed on how and what we are all doing this year for Halloween, it got me thinking. Halloween is my two daughter’s favorite holiday (mine are Thanksgiving and Passover). We decorated big and had parties when the kids were younger, but now I am more a candy distributor than a participant. So, I was contemplating is Halloween really worth it this year? The answer I came to is yes. As I have stated in previous blogs the need for normalcy builds greater for each of us every day. Clearly that is a pipedream and yet we all discuss it constantly behind masks and on zoom calls. I vote yes for Halloween for a couple of reasons- the first being of course it is a holiday most of us celebrate and I think holidays serve an important community and family purpose. The sense of togetherness we feel when we all agree to carve a pumpkin and buy some candy to give to children who have dreamed of their Halloween costume for weeks is an easily achievable goal even this year. It is an outdoor event and demands a few minutes of close contact. I know in my neighborhood we are setting up tables to distribute candy bags so there is less contact and tiny hands digging through candy. But what I really love most about Halloween this year is its ability to have us do something together safely. Standing (or sitting) in your yard as children bedazzled in costumes walk the neighborhoods getting goodies allows all of us to visit briefly and potentially safely. The waving to the neighbor, the comments to kids and parents about their child’s costume and a cheery ‘Happy Halloween’ is an interaction I for one am endorsing. Its authentic family engagement and it reminds me of when COVID first began and the weather, at least here, was cooler and many families rode bikes or took walks together. I met neighbors I never knew I had and that sense of true community was comforting. Halloween allows us that opportunity this fall. Be careful, be thoughtful in how you distribute goodies and engage from a safe distance. Time also changes that night so you can sleep in a bit later the next day! Enjoy the moment of Halloween magic and let’s be thankful we aren’t in it alone! We have our communities, neighbors, and friends. A lot of takeaways for a little candy. Happy hauntings!!!!