Here’s the rub. Halloween is over and now it’s time to pack all the Halloween gear away. As you sit there staring at a very eclectic mixture of costumes and accessories, you may be wondering what to do with all this stuff. You know your child isn’t likely going to want to be the same character again next year--so is it worth keeping? Here’s our list of great possibilities! Save it: If you have other kids, this is sort of a no brainer. Your younger children often will relish the idea of having several costume options to choose from and if you’ve saved your bigger kids costumes from prior years, they will have a bounty of costume solutions to choose from! You can use your imagination to re-vamp the old costume to fit the child’s personality. Definitely hang onto costume wigs and accessories. These handy items can be used in a plethora of ways down the road; all it takes is a little creativity! Re-use it: Take a good long look at your costume. Perhaps with a few adjustments, you may be able to recreate it into an entirely different character. With the addition of a few accessories, creative makeup, etc. you may be able to completely re-invent the character look altogether. Use your imagination! Play with it: Children love to wear costumes for dressing up all year round. You may not even need to pack your Halloween costumes away; why not just create a fun dress up box to put your retired costumes in for your kids to use for creative playtime? Costumes might be one of the most imaginative “toys” your kids ever had and are good for hours and hours of fun! Trade it: Get together with your friends and neighbors and have a costume swap or exchange party. Most of the time, Halloween costumes have only been worn once and they still have lots of life left in them. Trading costumes is an easy way of offering something new to kids without having to make new purchases. Donate it: If you really feel like your costume isn’t useful to you any longer, it may very well be just what someone else is looking for. Don’t hesitate to donate your gently used costumes to charity. Many children’s hospitals or other charitable organizations love costumes and thrift stores will also accept these as donations. Decorate with it: Get creative with your used costumes. Perhaps that Skeleton suit would make a really cool yard decoration next year! Stuffing the costumes with newspapers and topping them off with a spooky Jack-o-Lantern head is just one creative way of making good use of an old costume look. Old Halloween costumes don’t need to die. Like many Halloween spooks they can live on and on--they just need to find a new way to be brought back to life! Find your favorite way to reuse and recycle yours!