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A few years ago, my husband and I decided to trade in the inconveniences of city living for the comforts of the suburbs. ?With a toddler and a newborn, we found that late nights in San Francisco–checking out the latest mixology haunt, Fillmore concert, or farm-to-table restaurant–had been replaced by even later nights with a fussy baby and a scared-of-the-dark toddler. You know what I mean, when their nightmare?becomes your nightmarishly disrupted REM cycle!
Our otherwise welcoming neighbors made one thing clear from the outset: if we didn’t go all out for Halloween, we would go from that cute new family on the block to personas non grata before you could say boo! ?So we went straight to Target (a mere freeway exit away!), filled a shopping cart to the brim with candy and invested in a smoke machine. ?They came, they saw, they cleaned us out of candy before 8 pm!
These days, we are veterans of the Halloween stampede and start preparations far in advance. ?In the attic amongst the styrofoam gravestones and pumpkin candles, we keep a box of books about Halloween. ?I clear out a basket in the living room (who needs a throw blanket when you have a kid in your lap to keep you cozy?) and set up our spooky library. ?The kids love to pour through the books, remembering their favorites and vying for who gets to pick the first ghostly bedtime story.
Here’s a list of the most-requested at our house:
*We’re Off to Find the Witch’s House by Mr. Kreib and R.W. Alley
*Mouse’s First Halloween by Lauren Thompson
*The Berenstain Bears Trick or Treat by Stan and Jan Berenstain
*Mommy? by Maurice Sendak
*Frankenstein Makes a Sandwich by Adam Rex
What are your family’s top picks?