The question of when to go trick or treating with a new baby is not a new one, but with fall just around the corner and Halloween quickly approaching, whether or not to take your baby trick-or-treating is something you need to address.
I’ve learned over the years that anything can become a parenting conundrum. How you feed baby, whether you return to work or stay home, and how you approach sleep training can bring about instant controversy.
While I could anticipate those being hot-button issues, I wasn’t prepared for the latest dispute: trick or treating with baby. As it turns out, other parents have strong feelings about whether you and your little one should hit the streets on Halloween night.
This controversy seems to boil down to one thing: candy.
Parents taking their new baby trick or treating while expecting to gather a sackful of candy (for a baby too young to enjoy it) elicits strong opinions from others.
So, how do you trick or treat with a new baby that’s memorable while keeping in mind that other people may feel differently than you do? It’s all a matter of taking a look at your goals for baby’s first trick or treating, deciding on an age to begin, and remembering a few key tips for a night of fun.
What Age to Begin Trick or Treating
Some parents have baby’s costume picked out from day one while others advise waiting until baby is old enough to remember the event.
In reality, you can begin trick or treating with a baby of any age.
Babies love attention, to be cuddled and cooed at, and trick or treating is a fantastic opportunity to spend time as a family. It’s exciting to show off a new baby to your close neighbors and snap a few photos for the archives.
If you decide to trick or treat with a young baby, plan to have a fun evening without collecting candy. Skip the pumpkin bucket and tell neighbors you just came to visit. You’ll likely get a few pieces of candy slipped to you, but this attitude eliminates the awkwardness of asking for treats your child is obviously too young to enjoy.
A perfect time to introduce candy gathering is when your little one begins walking, talking, and saying simple phrases.
How to Trick or Treat with a New Baby
Beginning to trick or treat with a new baby might be a bit different from your childhood Halloweens. You’ll want to plan your timing carefully and do your best to get back for bedtime.
Instead of trying to gather as much candy as possible, visit select houses (including relatives and close friends) who will be interested in a visit from your family. After all, trick or treating with a new baby functions as a social event for tired parents.
Trick or Treating Tips
Other tips for baby’s first trick or treating include:
- Planning baby’s costume to be weather-appropriate. If you live in a chilly area, look for full-body fleece costumes.
- Determine whether or not you’ll be carrying baby and how to avoid it being awkward. For example, babies wearing tails or wings can become cumbersome.
- Plan for diaper changes. Make sure baby’s costume is easy for changes.
- Practice wearing the costume for a short stretch of time so baby can acclimate. This is also a great time for a pre-Halloween photoshoot. Skip the grainy evening pictures and plan ahead for some keepsake photos.