Halloween is right around the corner. If you’re fortunate enough to have any exposure to kids around this time of year, you can feel their anticipation and sheer excitement. The costumes they don. The courage it takes to knock on that door. All for that candy they collect by simply stating the words, “Trick or Treat!”

As an adult, I still remember the details of those six or seven times I got to participate in this Halloween merriment. The feel of those damp and chilly nights, the smell of the autumn leaves, seeing the neighborhood streets filled with other witches, ghosts, and goblins. Everyone out for the coveted candy prizes (and I still remember those houses that so kindly handed out the king-size chocolate bars).

Make These Moments Matter

So what do we do with a year like this one? In many places, Halloween festivities have been canceled due to COVID-19. With these health and safety measures being put in place, let’s not forget to still make the most out of these moments. We have so many things going on in our world right now that can suck the joy right out of all of us. So, when we have opportunities to move the needle in the other direction, make it happen. In these difficult times, what helps us get through it is making sure these moments matter.

Choose The Right Lens

Childhood is so short. Let them live in the moment. In fact, embrace this moment with them. If Halloween traditions are canceled in your town, start a new one. Some places have used this year as an opportunity to try something unique. Van Andel Institute has created a first time event called Halloween Spooktacular (join here if you dare!), where science, spooks, and fun will come together to make for a memorable experience.

Another cool adaptation, my local town is having families who wish to keep their kids at home sign up to have candy delivered to their doorstep. It’s like reverse trick-or-treating. I love this idea. Social media is packed full right now with engineered ways to deliver candy to kids with social-distancing in mind. Check out these creations here.

When we take a moment to notice all the ways we are making modifications to these normal traditions, we begin to see the sheer ingenuity that exists. So, the choice is ours: We can focus on the negativity or we can look at things through rose-colored glasses

Take Advice from the Experts

So, what do those in the field have to say? Take these simple pieces of advice from the real-life experts themselves — Kids. “Reenact childhood moments.” “Unleash your creativity!” and “Get dressed up and pretend it’s a party!” These answers are simply stated, yet packed full of unabashed joy and wonderment. We all could learn something new or relearn something long lost, when we try out being a kid again. Most importantly, make the most out of these moments we have been gifted. Each one holds an incredible amount of potential.

We hope you are all staying healthy and safe during this difficult time. For more free educational resources, simply follow this link, and don’t forget to join us on October 29th for VAI’s Science Spooktacular!