Today's guest blogger knows a thing or two about fun with kids! A mom of three and an entrepreneur, Courtney has built her career on children's programming and entertainment. Who better to give us the low down on creative ways to spend a spook-tacular day with your kiddies that isn't all about candy!
Halloween is coming up and it is one of my favourite times of year. I love the décor, the costumes, and the excitement, but how do you make Halloween special for kids when you do not want to be all about the candy? I find for my family I make each part of Halloween important, not just the day itself.
1) Pumpkin and Jack-o-lantern
It starts from taking the time to pick a pumpkin, this does not mean you have to spend $20 on a pumpkin from a farm but I let my kids look, feel and choose their own pumpkins. I let each kid draw a picture of how they want their jack-o-lanterns to look. Last year we decided we were going to be creative and paint our pumpkins to look like Ninja turtles. I have to admit they looked nothing like Ninja turtles but my kids had an amazing time. I encourage my kids to get right into the pumpkin and take out the gut. We love making toasted pumpkin seeds and add popcorn seasoning to them.
2) The Décor
We are big believers in decorating for Halloween. We will spend a whole evening putting everything up and decorating the front windows and the front of the house. We like to make our own decorations as well as buying some (cheap usually from the dollar store). Each year the kids get to choose their own decorations and where they want to put it. As well as making some décor we like to create some Halloween crafts that we can use as décor. I love the handprint crafts either a handprint spider or handprint bat are fun ones!
Even if you do not think you are very crafty here is a great blog for some easy DIY décor that won’t break the bank either.
It is hard to find but can be done, here are some great Halloween snacks you can make that are not full of sugar and sweets. Banana ghosts and pumpkin oranges.
4) Halloween Songs
I have a few songs that I have turned into Halloween songs that are fun ones to sing with the kids this time of year.
Ghosts Go Marching (tune Ants go marching)
Itsy Bitsy Spider
5 Little Pumpkins sitting on a face
1,2,3 Little Witches (tune 1,2,3 Little Indians)
5 Little Monsters or Werewolves (tune 5 Little Monkeys)
Here are some of my favourite Halloween songs
5) THE COSTUME
My very favourite part is the researching, deciding and creating of the costume. We love to make out own costumes in our family but sometimes it is just easier to buy one. Once again let your children take the time to look up some costume ideas online before they make the big decision and don’t get top frustrated if they change their mind (a few times). A few years ago we made bus costumes from cardboard boxes. It took a lot of effort but we worth it in the end.
Of course sometimes we do not have the time or money to create or buy the perfect costume but here are some easy last minute costumes that can be put together from items from home.
6) The Treats
6) The Treats
Now every kid is going to want to go trick or treating and even though you may not want then to have the candy maybe there are ways to get around it. I know one family who has a son with diabetes so they buy his candy back from him. He has to put together their candy, create a bill and do the math. I know another family who switches the candy for stickers or small toys. I know my guys love handing out candy and we like to play games when the kids come to the door and who has the best costumes win special bonus candy prizes.
If your little one suffers from food allergies, or you would just rather focus on non-candy treats, check out our article about the Teal Pumpkin Campaign here! There are plenty of great seasonal gifts you can hand out that will be fun for any costumed kiddo!
7) The Tricks
If you have a little time why not create a fun sensory game with items in a container, then tell a story and have your child place their hands and feel the items.
Worms – Spaghetti
Monster brains – jello
Cotton – spider webs
Great tips! There are lots of ways to get into the spirit of any holiday with your kids, but the daily grind can be a little lonely. Mommy groups are a great way to interact with other moms and kids in your area! Interested in learning more about Courtney and her programming? Click here for information!