Choosing a Great Halloween Costume for Kids

In keeping with the fall theme (two posts on one theme, I’m on a roll here, right?), let’s talk about Halloween. It’s nearly October and that means Halloween is just four short weeks away. That may sound like a lot of time to get ready, but if you have young kids, you know that its barely sufficient. Halloween is a big deal and choosing a great Halloween costume is on the top of every kid’s mind right now.

So how do you choose a great Halloween costume for kids? If you’re the parent of a baby (and you are somewhat evil), you put your kid in the funniest costume you can find. Such as a chicken suit (below):

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(The poor thing was so confused as to why he couldn’t crawl. His big puffy belly would keep rolling him over when he tried.)

Since learning to talk, G has told me exactly where I could put such atrocious Halloween costumes. In fact, that was the only Halloween costume I was ever able to choose for him. For the past three Halloweens – and he’s only had four thus far – he has worn the same Halloween costume. I don’t mean he has been the same character; I mean he has literally worn the same Thomas the Train costume every year. By choice. (Similarly, this post could also be called, “How to Get the Most Bang for Your Halloween Buck.”)

Halloween 1:

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Halloween 2:

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Halloween 3:

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I almost didn’t bother even asking him what Halloween costume he wanted this year. I know where the Thomas costume is, so we’re ready to go.

But, I am glad I asked him in the end. After a bit of thinking, he decided he wanted to be a princess for Halloween. It was so innocent and sweet. However, as quickly as he said it, he changed his mind, embarrassed. “Carlos will make fun of me and call me a girl,” he said with his head down. “I actually don’t want to be a princess. I want to be a dinosaur.”

I hate – HATE – that societal norms have already started to affect my child. (And I kind of hate Carlos’ parents, too, who obviously enforce gender stereotypes with their son.) G is four. He doesn’t understand why a boy shouldn’t wear sparkly jewelry, and frankly, neither do I. It hurts my heart to know he’s already being indoctrinated into the world of “little boys do this, little girls do that.”

So we shall see. I am encouraging my son to choose whatever costume his heart desires this Halloween – be it Thomas, dinosaur, or princess. And if he chooses to be a princess, I will happily dress up as a prince.

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