Pumpkins, candy, ghouls, ghosts, beasts and demons - all of these things were the guidelines to the magic of Halloween when I was a kid.
These things contributed to the overwhelming sense of spooky joy, and the feeling I had that all the sprits were dancing around me as I happily marched from house to house getting all kinds of tooth-rotting treats. The magic of Halloween night is a joy unexceeded by any other, except maybe Christmas.
But for a lot of people - most kids I talk to - the wonder of the night has long since faded. I know that I have not felt the same tingling crawling up my spine as I did when I was younger - not for at least three years now.
So how can we relight those feelings of glee and euphoria that we once lived by when we were kids?
There seem to be many answers to this question, for different people love different qualities of the holiday. I know for example that my mother gets the spirit of Halloween by doing traditions that celebrate family, such as setting an extra dinner plate when we sit down for supper, and setting out lighted candles next to pictures of family members who have died. Some people probably get that feeling from just celebrating the holiday by going to parties, or staying up all night with friends watching scary movies.