Have you ever stopped to think about trick-or-treating? Halloween is so much more than just a fun night of doorbell ringing, asking for candy, and moving on to the next place.  It's a night of strategy where the person who claims the most candy is seen as top dog by their friends.

Think about what's happening when our kids go out trick-or-treating. They're setting goals. They're making plans. They're figuring out how to execute their plans.  Before you send your kids out, there are some things you need to know to help make sure your kids are kept as safe as possible in their quest to claim candy domination. The CDC has an awesome way to remember everything and it spells out SAFE HALLOWEEN:

"S- swords, knives, and similar costume accessories should be short, soft, and flexible.
A- avoid trick-or-treating alone. Walk in groups or with a trusted adult.
F- fasten reflective tape to costumes and bags to help drivers see you.
E- examine all treats for choking hazards and tampering before eating them.

H- hold a flashlight while trick-or-treating to help you see and others see you.
A- always test make-up in a small area first. Remove it before bedtime.
L- look both ways before crossing the street.
L- lower your risk for serious eye injury by not wearing decorative contact lenses.
O- only walk on sidewalks whenever possible, or on the far edge of the road facing traffic.
W- wear well-fitting masks, costumes, and shoes to avoid blocked vision, trips, and falls.
E- eat only factory-wrapped treats. Avoid eating homemade treats made by strangers.
E- enter homes only if you're with a trusted adult. Don't stop at dark houses.
N- never walk near lit candles or luminaries. Be sure to wear flame-resistant costumes.

[lvia CDC]