Friday, October 5, 2012

Halloween Parties for Kids

"As spirits roam the neighborhoods at night,
Let loose upon the Earth till it be light..."
~Nicholas Gordon, via poemsforfree.com

******

       So it's about that time of year again... Halloween! It's a pretty big deal in my house and I always end up spending a small fortune on costumes for my kiddos. Well except for Hannah. She's my youngest daughter (7 years old) and she has been wearing the same Care Bear costume for the past 4 years! And she actually wears it against my wishes, because I keep telling her it's about time for a new one. This year after a bunch of tears, I finally convinced her to get a new one. But the other ones... they will be wearing the ones from last year or the year before. Ok, I'm off track. Anyway, like I said Halloween is a big deal in my house. And I LOVE throwing parties for the kids and their cousins. So since we will be in a new house this Halloween, I really wanna throw a great bash for them. Here's some games and treats I'll be making for a "fangtastic" (I know, I'm a cornball!) soiree:

GAMES:

Pop Goes the Pumpkin: This is a pretty cool game for kids of all ages! You fill orange balloons with confetti and candy and place them on the wall in the shape of a pumpkin! It's a cute little twist on the carnival game of throwing darts and popping balloons! Check out the link below for the full instructions...

Pop Goes the Pumpkin
Source: marthastewart.com


Apple Bobbing: Could there really be a Halloween party without this classic? However, I found a bit of a twist on it that I believe will suit any Halloween party quite nicely:

Source: marthastewart.com
Instead of using whole, boring apples for this game, why not throw in some "shrunken heads"? This was orginally an apple cider recipe but I thought it would be even cooler to use for apple bobbing.  

Directions for shrunken heads via marthastewart.com:



  1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside. In a medium bowl, mix together lemon juice and salt; set aside.
  2. Peel apples and cut each in half through the stem; remove seeds and core. Using a sharp paring knife, carve a face, as desired, on the rounded side of each apple half. Place apples in lemon mixture for one minute; transfer to paper towels to drain.
  3. Place apples, face-side up on prepared baking sheet and transfer to oven. Let bake until apples are dry and begin to brown around the edges, about 90 minutes. Remove apples from baking sheets.
Check out the link below for some interesting background on the game. I didn't know there was such a history to it!

Apple Bobbing Background 

Ghost Stories in the Dark: Another great idea from Ms. Stewart. Before telling ghost stories, light some candles. But make them trick candles that go out one by one by themselves as the story is being told! Such an awesome idea; check out the link  below to make these "mysterious: candles:

How to make "mystery" candles 

Halloween Feel Box Game: 
Another fun thing to do is the ever popular Halloween Feel Box game! For this you will need a good sized card board box to  divide into compartments. You may do as man as you like as long as the box can accomodate them. Cut out holes for each compartment, making sure it's big enough for hands but not too big so that the kids can peek. Then fill the compartments. Here's some gross ideas:


  • Damp, Course Sponge - Brains
  • Twisted Chenille Stems - Spider
  • Pretzel Stick - Petrified Rat Tails
  • Dried Apricots - Dried-up Tongues
  • Spiderwebs
  • Cooked, Cold Spaghetti Noodles - Worms
  • Cooked, Cold Spaghetti Noodles - Veins
  • Peeled Grapes - Eyeballs
  • Fake Fur
  • Tines of a Plastic Fork - Vampire Teeth
  • Soft Flour Tortilla - Skin (can add a little oil)
  • Feed Corn - Teeth
  • Corn Husk Silk - Hair
  • Slime
(Via Sherri Osborn, about.com)

According to Richard from about.com, it's also fun to cut a hole in the front and back of a box and not fill the compartment. INstead, as a child put their hand in the front, reach in the hole in the back and grab it. 

SNACKS AND PARTY FOOD:


Slimy Worms:



Slimy Jello Worms Halloween Gross Food
Source: divinedinnerparty.com

Ingredients:
1 pkg. (6 oz) purple gelatin (raspberry or grape work well)
3/4 oz. unflavored gelatin
3 C. boiling water
3/4 C. whipping cream
green food coloring, as needed
100 plastic straws

Instructions: 1. In a medium, heat safe mixing bowl, stir together plain and flavored gelatin powders.
2. Pour boiling water over, stirring until gelatin is fully dissolved.
3. Allow gelatin to cool til only slightly warm.
4. Stir whipping cream into the gelatin mixture. Stir in green food coloring (you'll probably need 10 drops or more) until your gelatin gets that purpley-brown-grey color of earthworms.
5. With your 100 straws fully extended and snug in your chosen container, pour the gelatin mixture over the straws, filling the container.
6. Cover container and chill at least 8 hours. You can make them and store them this way up to two days in advance of your Halloween party.
7. Remove straws from their container (cutting or ripping a disposable container away is easiest).
8. With hot tap water running, place batches of 4-5 straws under hot running water for a couple quick seconds.
9. Remove "worms" from their straw casings, pressing with fingers. Set on waxed paper to set up.
10. Repeat until all worms are removed.
12. Chill, covered, on waxed paper at least 2 hours.
13. Serve in a chilled bowl, as pictured. Then watch all the kids gobble up this fun Halloween party food. 
Source: divinedinnerparty.com, via http://pinterest.com/kitkatcadillac/

Kitty Litter Cake:



Kitter Litter Halloween Cake Recipe
Source: divinedinnerparty.com



Ingredients:
1 (18 oz.) box spice or german chocolate cake mix
1 (18 oz.) box white cake mix
1 pkg. white sandwich cookies
1 large box vanilla instant pudding mix
12 small tootsie rolls
1 litter box (preferably a NEW one!)
1 plastic scoop
green food coloring

Preparation:
Prepare cake mixes and bake according to directions (any size pans). Prepare pudding mix and chill until ready to assemble. Crumble white sandwich cookies in small batches in blender, they tend to stick, so scrape often. Set aside all but about 1/4 cup. To the 1/4 cup cookie crumbs, add a few drops green food coloring and mix using a fork or shake in a jar.
When cakes are cooled to room temperature, crumble into a large bowl. Toss with half the remaining white cookie crumbs and the chilled pudding. You probably won’t need all of the pudding, mix with the cake and “feel” it, you don’t want it soggy, just moist; gently combine. Put mixture into clean litter box.

Put three unwrapped Tootsie rolls in a microwave safe dish and heat until soft and pliable. Shape ends so they are no longer blunt, curving slightly. Repeat with 3 more Tootsie rolls and bury in mixture. Sprinkle the other half of cookie crumbs over top. Scatter the green cookie crumbs lightly over the top, this is supposed to look like the chlorophyll in kitty litter. Heat remaining Tootsie Rolls, three at a time in the microwave until almost melted. Scrape them on top of the cake and sprinkle with cookie crumbs. Place the box on a newspaper and sprinkle a few of the cookie crumbs around. Serve with a new pooper scooper.
Source: kidcuisine.com



Witch Cupcakes: 


Witch Cupcakes
Source: parents.com

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups chocolate frosting
  • 1 4 3/4 ounce package chocolate cones (Nabisco Oreo Cones)
  • Orange nonpareils
  • 1 16 ounce can vanilla frosting, divided
  • Neon-green food coloring
  • 12 cupcakes, removed from paper liners
  • Chocolate chips
  • Green tube icing
  • Red tube icing
  • Mike and Ike Tangy Twister candies
  • Chocolate Jimmies

Make It

1. Place chocolate frosting in a freezer-weight zip-top bag and snip off a small corner. Pipe base of cones, dip in orange nonpareils, and set aside.
2. Place 1/2 cup vanilla frosting in a another zip-top bag and snip off a small corner. Tint remaining frosting green and frost cupcakes.
3. Turn cupcakes on sides, then place decorated cones on top. Using vanilla frosting, pipe eyes on cupcakes. Attach chocolate chips for pupils and pipe a dot onto chips. Use red icing for mouths, green icing for warts; shape candies into noses. Pipe chocolate icing onto cupcakes for hair and sprinkle with chocolate jimmies.

Source: parents.com


Slime Punch:

Slime Punch
Source: parents.com


Ingredients

  • 2 tubes (.68 ounces) red decorating gel
  • Lemonade mix (to make 2 quarts)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon meringue powder
  • 2 liters seltzer
  • green food coloring
  • yellow food coloring

Make It

1. Squeeze drops of red gel on the ouside of clear glasses and serving containers. Let dry, about 10 minutes.
2. Combine lemonade mix, sugar and meringue powder (this makes the drink frothy) in a bowl. Slowly pour in seltzer, whisking continually, until fully blended. Stir in 10 drops of green food coloring and 4 drops of yellow food coloring. Pour the punch into serving containers. Source: parent.com

       These are just a few of the ghoulishly fun things you can do. Hopefully, once you get started with these, you'll come up with even more things to do! 

       As always, thanks for stopping by and I'd love to see some of your own kid Halloween party ideas! Make sure you subscribe so you're always in the loop with my posts! Hope y'all have a wonderful weekend!

~XoXo Jess












 

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