Last year, I was taken by surprise.
I went shopping for Halloween decorations in mid-October, only to be met by bare shelves, a couple of sad-looking skeletons and a few assorted window clings.
Primarily, I saw a lot of Christmas angels and sparkling candy canes.
I'm sure I had the same look of outrage on my face as when I went out looking for snow pants in November and found shelves of T-shirts and ads for bikinis. But that's a different story.
So this year,I planned ahead. Far ahead. I started trolling the craft aisles at Michael's and Hobby Lobby early this month, noticing when the back-to-school items disappeared and the spooky, creepy decorations appeared in full force.
I've been checking out the dollar stores and wandering the home decor areas at department stores. I watched for those clearance flyers to start appearing, which they have, and although my husband thinks I'm crazy, I feel much more prepared to fill the goodie bags for the class Halloween party this year.
Sure it's early, but our yard is already starting to look a little festive, too.
Now if only I'm not too late to get a few pairs of snow pants.