October is upon us, and if the falling leaves and pumpkins popping up on doorsteps wasn't enough to give you the fall heads up, the 3,000 pound candy packs at the store might just do the trick.
And, as we worry about bundling up the kids in layers, their thoughts are turning toward that one important end-of-the-month moment: Halloween.
For those of us not crafty enough to scratch-make kid-size disguises, Pottery Barn Kids, The Disney Store and Monkey-Toes Shoes make it look like we did with realistic touches sure to make little ghouls and goblins the talk of the block.
Even the fruit-loving caterpillar in the beloved children's book, The Very Hungry Caterpillar loves nibbling sweets now and again, and your kiddo will want to do the same on All Hallow's Eve. The World of Eric Carle and PBK teamed up to create The Very Hungry Caterpillar costume. Bright bands of color, a cozy red cap, an easy-to-wear fleece body is soft and warm enough for chilly evenings. A four-piece butterfly costume inspired by the book will also be available, along with matching treat bags and a slew of other creative costume creatures, including a unicorn, cupcake, furry monster, wolf and more.
When kids want to dress up like their favorite Disney princesses, pirates and other iconic mouse-minded characters, The Disney Store's Halloween Bootique is a parent's go-to resource for a range of licensed costumes and corresponding accessories (think tiaras, eye patches, wands, hairpieces and shoes) for babies and big kids alike.
Parents looking for hand-painted kicks to complete a handmade costume need not look further than Monkey-Toes. Their playful line of animal- and insect-themed shoes goes limited edition (available only until October 31) come Halloween, with special glow-in-the-dark eyes painted on each pair. All the paint used is non-toxic, and though they take up to two weeks to be shipped out (these must be special ordered online), the final product is worth it, considering that the styles can easily go from blackboard to blacktop later.
Consider piecing together handmade pieces for a completely original costume look with finds from Etsy. An online marketplace for handmade goods, plenty of shops offer up amazing one-of-a-kind finds not found anywhere else.
And, since decorating can be the biggest treat for parents during a mainly kid-focused time of the year, there's nothing better than easy clean up afterward. Once those spiderwebs, pumpkin seeds, glitter and silly string leave a tracked-around-the-house mess, turn to the LG LuV250C KOMPRESSOR Compact PetCare Vacuum Cleaner. Even though it can pick up pet hair with ease, it's awesome for cleaning up after the kiddos, too, since the small yet powerful, feature-packed unit allows you to pick up 3 times more dust before emptying it. It has a telescoping handle that collapses for easy storage, and the DualForce suction lets you clean a wide surface area and get to hard-to-reach edges.
Maria Pilar Clark is a mom times two and Windy City-based writer.
See more of Pilar's stories here.