Halloween has always been one of my favorite holidays, and ever since college, my husband and I have hosted an annual Halloween party. Once we had children, my desire to make Halloween magical has paralleled my Christmas spirit. But this year is going to be weird. The last month has been intense. Mother Nature clearly has it in for our state. And with the global COVID-19 pandemic, our family has decided to forego trick-or-treating and Halloween parties. So what’s a busy mom to do? How do we still make Halloween magical? Halloween is FINALLY on a Saturday after all.
Halloween by Shipt: A magical plan that can be delivered to your door
Between wibble-wobbling on what we would do for Halloween and getting caught up in the daily adventures of life (work responsibilities, selling our home, hurricanes), Halloween snuck up on me a bit. One week out and I realized that I may have missed the boat. The stores are already putting out Christmas decorations, and there isn’t much left in the Halloween clearance. Whoops. Fear not. An hour or two of internet research led me to a plan with simple instructions and everyday materials that you can have delivered to your door. (And Hurricane Zeta pending, they can also be pulled off post-Hurricane).
The Allains’ Halloween Plan
Here is what our family will be doing on Halloween. I share in case these ideas might be interesting and helpful to you as well. Mamas gotta stick together.
Spooky Breakfast: Our kids love these blueberry veggie muffins I get from Costco. They sell the same brand at Target. With a few pretzels and raisins, our everyday breakfast muffins are suddenly spooky Halloween spiders.
AM Plan: Our Saturday morning will be filled with Hello Dancer’s Halloween magic (and excellent COVID-19 protocols) and a small, outside, socially-distanced birthday party for one of my daughter’s classmates (they are already in the same class, no new exposure vectors here.) If you are looking for some fun family Saturday morning activities, might I recommend some Halloween-themed yoga, the St. Barnabas pumpkin patch (wear your masks!), or a family walk.
Lunch: Since our morning is going to be jam packed, lunch is going to have to be super quick and easy. But that doesn’t mean it can’t also be magical! While I have been lectured on the horrors of Lunchables, I don’t think that extends to the DIY variety. I managed to score a pumpkin cookie cutter at some point, so I am cutting out store bought pizza crust and letting my girls get messy making pumpkin shaped pizzas. I also found candy eyes in the baking section at Joann, so I will blend those with cut up grapes. Add a side of cucumbers, and we are working our way to a fun and balanced Halloween lunch.
Let the Party Commence!
We are keeping a small circle these days. Our parents and my sister’s family will be coming over to our house for an afternoon Halloween party and indoor trick-or-treat. Good nap required for admission, and then let the wild rumpus begin! Here’s my last minute easy party plan that will be sure to impress.
Post-Nap Snack: We will kick our party off with a post-nap snack that doubles as an activity. (I also plan to have out a fruit bowl, veggie tray, hummus, and crackers). While the kids nap, I will use a pizza cutter to cut up strips of cheese and crescent dough. Then the kids can wrap up some mummy dogs for a snack.
Arts & Crafts: No preschool/toddler party would be complete without arts & crafts, so I found some ideas that are sure to please. Here are the ones we are going with. I plan to prep the materials Friday night:
Tissue paper candy corn – Draw rounded triangles onto card stock, cut out. Procure orange, yellow, and white tissue paper. Either rip up in advance or let the kids rip up pieces. Cover the paper with a glue stick and let the kids stick on the tissue paper pieces to make candy corn art.
Hand print spiders – Trace their hands on black construction paper, cut out. Glue hands onto black construction paper circles. Add googly eyes and decorate.
Masking tape mummies – Print out or draw humanoid shapes on cardstock, cut out. Let the kids cover these “mummies” in masking tape. Add eyes, decorate. Our mummies like rhinestones.
Games: We have got to get those wiggles out. So I also have a few Halloween games ready to roll!
Toilet paper mummies – Divide up into teams. One person is the mummy and the others cover them in toilet paper. (Insensitive in light of COVID-19 shortages? Maybe. You do you.)
Bobbing for apples – My 5 year old is legit excited about bobbing for apples. Let’s do it.
Face painting – I bought a random face paint kit at Target. No promises, but generally, kids don’t really have super high expectations. My girls are just super excited with any kind of face paint.
Halloween charades – Let the kids act out a few Halloween themed ideas, and everybody can guess. Ten minutes of organized chaos.
Cookie decorating – With some food coloring and sprinkles, the kids can make their own Halloween themed treat. Wipes at the ready.
Marshmallow toss – Line up small paper cups and let the kids throw mini-marshmallows. Presumably, they will also eat marshmallows. Baby beer pong? Essentially.
Dinner: Our family Halloween party features hot dogs and chili every year. Why mess with a good thing?
Indoor Trick or Treating: The evening will culminate in indoor trick-or-treating. Our current house has 5 doors off of the living room, so the kids will get dressed up in their costumes, gather their treat baskets, and go door to door for an hour or so. Behind each door will be one of their grown ups ready to pass out treats. Bonus – we are going to start this at 5pm instead of 6 so the littles stay on track with bedtime. Double Bonus – we have boxes of Halloween costumes from years past, so every time the kids come to the door, their grownups will have a new costume on to keep it extra fun and add some variety.
Happy Halloween everybody! Be Safe! Stay Spooky.