Tonight's the night! Hoping the weather cooperates for all the kids this evening. Children in every Chicagoland neighborhood will be heading out in their costumes to ring their neighbor's doorbells with a hearty request of "trick-or-treat" tonight, hoping to score some yummy candies and other Halloween treats.
My son, for one, couldn't wait for Halloween to come around. He's been picking up his plastic pumpkin bucket daily asking if today's the day we get to go trick-or-treating.
With as much as we enjoy Halloween, (well not the scary stuff . . . I will totally pass a house by if it looks too spooky) it's important to remember a few safety tips before trick-or-treating with the kids.
Halloween Safety Tips
Make sure you check all candy before giving to your kids. I know this sounds a little old school, but I would toss out any candy that isn't properly sealed. It could just be a factory mistake, but I'd err on the side of caution here and not consume it.
Use crosswalks whenever possible. Darting across the street when other cars are present is dangerous and you should always look both ways before crossing.
Carry a flashlight and use reflective gear. Flashlights not only help you see where you're going, but they also help others see you. Especially if your costume is dark-colored, you should wear reflective tape, or some other reflective gear to make sure others, especially drivers, see you.
Trick-or-treat in groups, if possible. If you're friendly with some of your neighbors that have kids, ask them if they'd mind you and your kids tagging along. Remember, there's safety in numbers!
Never enter a stranger's home. For any reason. Also, if a house looks too dark, I'd skip that one too. Predators use holidays where children are present, like Halloween, to potentially prey on kids. I'd be on high alert for any suspicious activity and would not allow my kids to enter someone's home under any circumstances.
So make sure you're ready for all those neighborhood kids that will inevitably ring your doorbell tonight. We've got our stock of chocolates and other yummy treats all ready to go. Let's just hope I don't sneak into our stash before the kids arrive tonight!
Happy Halloween! I hope you have a fun and festive holiday, but remember to make safety a priority!
Amanda Ortiz is a full-time working mom to two kids (a teen and a toddler), living in suburban Chicago.
See more of Amanda's stories here.