Happy Halloween! If your blended family is anything like ours you've probably wondered why Halloween can end up being more emotionally charged than any other holiday. I've come to the conclusion that it has more to do with kids growing up than the actual holiday.
Kids grow up so fast and there's a very tiny window that they love to dress up and you get to be apart of the process as a parent - split that time in half - it's a few years at best.
In the beginning we agreed collectively with the two other families to rotate Halloween when it fell on the weekday - split if it was on the weekend. When the kids were younger - they got home from school at 4:00 and went to bed at 8:30 - 9:00 - extremely hectic to split in half for everyone involved especially the kids. If it was your family's year - you purchased the costume.
In principle the idea seemed a reasonable arrangement for all parties involved. In reality? It worked extremely well when the year belonged to the other families - our year...not so much.
One year in particular comes to mind as I'm writing this- it was our year to have the kids - a Wednesday night/school night. We spent hours picking out just the right costume for each kid- mapped out our Trick or Treat route - we were in countdown mode. The day before Halloween, Greta called me not my Hubby. During this time period - a phone call to me usually meant she was upset about something - I was an easy target to let loose her frustration and anger.
I answered with hesitation, Greta said "I would like to take the kids to do an activity after school for Halloween. I'll have them back by 6 - 6:30. That ok?" I kindly reiterated the reason for not splitting the Holiday. Greta angrily replied "WELL, I'm just asking to spend a couple of hours with MY kids on Halloween - sorry that's such a problem." Click. The phone was dead.
I immediately called my Hubby - we talked and decided that we were not going to split the Holiday, but since she was so upset about the not seeing them we would just let her take the kids.
My Hubby called her back - reconfirmed the rationale behind our mutual agreement to not to split the weekday Holiday, but offered to bring the kids over with their costumes and let Greta spend the entire evening with them. Greta was extremely nice to my Hubby - it was never her intention to take the whole evening. She would take them only if it meant she wasn't giving up having them following year. My Hubby said "No - you'll still have them next year."
The special activity? Sending the kids trick or treating with a neighbor kid and a flashlight.........
I'm not sure if Greta's plans changed and she was too embarrassed to call back or it was more about making a point to me - they were her kids and she should be able to ask and get them regardless of the agreement.
The end result is that we spent less than half of the Halloween Holiday with our kids. Raylan and I have never been big Halloween fans so going to war over the Holiday never seemed worth the time and effort. Even though the big plans of the other family scheduled on our year never seemed to pan out - it was a battle we chose not to fight.
How do you spend the Halloween Holiday? Love to hear.