Ask Aunt Chelsea, Week of Oct. 23, 2013



Dear Aunt Chelsea:
My almost-teenage daughter wants to go as Miley Cyrus for Halloween — and not the “Hannah Montana” version. Actually, her idea for the costume isn’t any more risqué than what you’d see on the beach — but I’m worried that giving my approval would be like approving of everything Miley’s been up to lately (which I most certainly don’t). What happened to the nice, innocent girl who went every year as a Disney princess?

Worried, on West 18th Street

Dear Worried:
You simply must accept that fact that your little angel has gone the way of Disney cell animation — which is to say, mom’s little pixie has grown into her “Pixar” era, and yearns for a more sophisticated way of presenting herself. The good news is, she’s still asking your permission to be rebellious. Enjoy it while it lasts. If her costume is beach-appropriate, let her do as she pleases. But please, put a “No Twerking” clause in your verbal contract, before letting her out the door and into that brave new, post-tween world.


Oh, my. Has it really been a year since I started writing this column? It certainly has. With that in mind, my tough but fair editor says we can occasionally dip into the archives and bring you an “Aunt Chelsea Classic.” Here’s a timely (and timeless!) one, from October 2012.

Dear Aunt Chelsea:
This year, it’s our turn to host the Halloween party for families in our building. We’ve always seen ourselves as hip and fun parents, but can’t decide whether to give the kids candy or healthy treats.
Confused in Chelsea

Dear Confused:
Letting the little ones dress up like bloody zombies only to reward them with sugar-free organic snacks is a mixed signal guaranteed to inspire disillusionment and mistrust. Hand out apples instead of jumbo Kit Kats, and you might as well include an engraved invitation for the juicebox set to leave burning doggy stuff on your doorstep.

You see yourselves as hip and fun parents? Then see this holiday for what it is: an annual get out of jail free card for mischievous behavior and eating inappropriate amounts of junk food. You can’t spell “kid” without “id” — so let them run wild, and make sure there are plenty of pillows on the floor (to act as shock absorbers once they start bouncing off the walls).  When they wake up on November 1st with a tummy ache, hand them an orange and tell them the party’s over.