Halloween is one of my favorite holidays. Growing up, Halloween was a huge deal and my mom would always put a lot of time and effort into making our Halloween costumes for us. Today I've combined some of my favorite Halloween traditions from when I was growing up, along with some fun non-food treat and party ideas you can do with your kiddos this year.
1) Spaghetti Brain Bingo
Growing up we always played this game at my Grandma's annual Halloween party and it takes less than 5 minutes to prepare. Simply boil two packages of spaghetti noodles and then throw random 'creepy' food items in the bowl of spaghetti. Your kids will have fun digging their hands through the noodles trying to find each of the creepy food items. Click here for a printable you can use showing your kids what to look for.
2) You "Light Up" My Halloween
This cute idea includes a free printable that you can easily print at home on cardstock. The added bonus is that your kids can wear the glowsticks to stay safe on Halloween.
3) Healthy Halloween Snack
My kids love Mandarin Oranges and it is one of my go-to foods for a healthy snack (tip: look for the mandarin oranges packed in juice instead of heavy syrup). This would be a really fun way to add some Halloween spirit to their school lunches.
4) Non-Candy Goody Bags
Our kids get so much candy at Halloween, a fun switch for the "treat" part of trick-or-treat can be a small bag of non-candy toys. Walmart and Target have a large selection of Halloween non-candy items such as: stickers, pencils, temporary tattoos, glow stick (or bracelets, necklaces, etc), bubbles, pencil tops/erasers, mini slinkies, bouncy balls, stencils, etc. You can also find these same items very inexpensively at any party store.
5) Teal Pumpkin Project
This year, FARE (Food Allergy and Research Organization) has made an effort to promote the Teal Pumpkin Project. This campaign encourages people to raise awareness of food allergies by providing non-food treats for trick-or-treaters and painting a pumpkin teal - the color of food allergy awareness - to place in front of their house along with a free printable sign from FARE to indicate they have non-food treats available. The Teal Pumpkin Project is designed to promote safety, inclusion and respect of individuals managing food allergies – and to keep Halloween a fun, positive experience for all. You can download a free printable to tape to your front door here. I also made a cute teal pumpkin I am going to put outside my door (and use in my house the rest of the month for decoration). I found the fake pumpkin at the Dollar Tree for $1 and bought a can of spray paint at Walmart for $3.77 (Rust-oleum 2x ultra cover in Satin Aqua).
6) Trick or Treat Smell My Feet!
Now you really can! Add this printable gift tag to some hand soap or lotion and you’ve got an adorable gift for your child's teacher or a girlfriend.
7) Homemade Slime
Remember as kids we used to play with Gak? (I might be dating myself here). Here is a really fun homemade slime recipe just using three simple ingredients. Your kids will have a blast making it, and this can be a fun treat they can give away to friends, or if you are hosting a Halloween party this can be a fun station to set up to keep the kids entertained. The easy recipe can be found here.
8) Switch Witch
We started doing this last year, and my 4-year old loved it. A day or two after Halloween after they've been able to enjoy some of their Halloween candy, use this poem to explain to your kids that the Switch Witch will be stopping by. If they put all their Halloween candy on the front step, the witch will come and switch it with a brand new toy. Click on this image to print.
9) PJ's Under Your Costume
This is a helpful tip that one of my best friends, Holly, shared with me. When you get your costumes on your kids, make sure to put their Halloween pjs on underneath. This will help keep them warm while they are trick or treating, and makes bedtime easier when you get home (since it will probably be past their normal bed time). Aren't her three little army guys cute?
For more fun Halloween ideas, visit my Halloween Pinterest Board. Have you tried any of these ideas before? Let me know what you think!
Here is a clip of a segment I did with our local news Morning Show talking about these fun ideas: