As a mom of two wild and crazy kids who’s love for Halloween runs through their veins all year long (which yes, is a very proud moment for me), I thought I would share four tips for photographing kids during the trick-or-treating festivities.

Have some juice and get prepared

Make sure that you have a full battery and empty card before heading out the door. The worst thing that could happen is you get back two blocks over and have to run back home because you weren’t prepared.

Also, before you leave set your camera to the right settings. It is going to get dark quick and you don’t want to have to be fumbling with your camera and miss the shot. Might I even suggest maybe using the Aperture mode setting on the camera?

Start with the pregame

Don’t forget about the pregame! Start taking pictures the moment they start to get into their costumes. Half the fun of Halloween is picking out the costume and getting ready. Photograph the experience and watch the excitement build in little faces as they get ready for their big reveal.

Carry a flashlight

This doesn’t apply just to you, but also to your trick-or-treaters — carry a flashlight. Of course, this is just a safety measure as a parent for your kids but you can also shine them at or towards your kids throughout the night. Bounce the light of a house or the ghost in white. Use the flashlight to illuminate their faces where extract light is needed.

If a flashlight isn’t an option for ya, find pockets of light that are available to you. Porch lights, street lights or even the headlights of oncoming cars.

Have fun!

The last and most important tip is to just have fun! Don’t worry about getting the perfect posed shot — the kids aren’t concerned with pictures, they just want their candy. Plus you can see more of their personality if you just let them do their thing.

Try getting down on their level, seeing what they see. Capture all the tiny details, like the fact that their shoes untied or that their hat keeps falling off their head, and most importantly, don’t forget to take pictures of them stuffing their faces when the nights has ended!