Tuesday, October 9, 2012

My Top Ten Ideas for a More Memorable Halloween Season

Tonight our ward had a mid-week Relief Society activity about simple ideas for making the upcoming holiday seasons (Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas) fun and memorable.  There was a presenter for each holiday and I was asked a number of weeks ago to present about Halloween (my favorite holiday) since I sort of have a reputation for being a Halloween fan. 

Anyway, I did some brainstorming and came up with ten ideas for a more memorable Halloween that I talked about (and gave as a handout) tonight:
  1. Music  – Play it to wake up your kids for school or before going trick-or-treating.  Have a little dance party in your living room.  Some of my favorite Halloween songs are Thriller, Monster Mash, Flight of the Valkyries, Toccata and Fugue in D Minor, Ghostbusters, Purple People Eater
  2. Food – Choose a traditional meal to serve every year (e.g. pumpkin pancakes for breakfast, a healthy dinner that is the same every year, etc.); it helps to make something you don’t normally make or prepare regular food in a special way (enchiladas with two dollops of sour cream and an olive in each center to look like eyes or monte cristo sand"witches" for something special and different)
  3. Photos – Scrapbook album, photo book or picture frames packed away with Halloween decorations and pulled out each year to remember previous years’ costumes (it will be especially fun to see the progression in costumes and growth of kids year-after-year)
  4. Costumes – dress up and make someone’s day (grab a scary mask and wear it while making breakfast; invest in a black or red cape for simple costume ideas like vampire, magician, red riding hood, superhero, etc.)
  5. Décor – paper chains from newspapers or sheet music, a tablecloth from Halloween fabric bought on sale after the holiday, lots of candles, etc. 
  6. Literature – check out Halloween books from the library (many options for young children - my favorites are "Frankenstein Makes a Sandwich" by Adam Rex and "Halloween" by Jerry Seinfeld; older children may be interested in Jekyll & Hyde, Frankenstein, Dracula) and read a different book or chapter each night
  7. Evening walk by flashlight – go for a spooky walk ahead of Halloween with flashlights to admire the decorations 
  8. Scare your family – buy a giant spider/ghost/bat/skeleton that you move around the house (hide it in the bathtub, bed, car, refrigerator, etc.) - Paul and I started this tradition on accident when we bought a huge spider and Paul kept rigging it to get me (a couple of more memorable spots were when it was hanging from the garage door motor when I drove into the garage and when I went to check on Clara when she was 5 months old and found it in the crib with her (she was sleeping, thank goodness))
  9. Fall stovetop potpourri – cut an apple in quarters and put in a small pot with cinnamon sticks, whole cloves, and a teaspoon of vanilla, then fill pot with water and simmer on the stove all day, replenishing water as needed 
  10. Take (and get in!!) Pictures – capture images of the fun things you do, not just on Halloween but leading up to it (pumpkin patches, costumes, carving jack-o-lanterns, etc.)
If you have any other good ideas, please share!


  1. Great ideas! Thanks for the tips - I'm not so good at Halloween, but now that I have a little one I want to make sure he has plenty of good memories of all Holidays!

    when we were growing up we would trick or treat to our own house and our parents would give us special treats, like a giant candy bar and a book, or a pack of gum and new hair things. we loved seeing what little treats we would get.

    Love your blog as always!

  2. I love these ideas Amy! I will have to do a couple this next week! :)

  3. I love you list. A lot of it I do. We definitely have the capes in different colors and I just picked out some different fabrics on sale and my mother in law made a couple of them in about twenty minutes. She's great. There's a great Halloween book out right now for littles called Frankenstein, a parody of Madeline. It's so cute, you'll have to get it to read to baby girl and just to get a kick out of it for you and Paul.

    I'm bringing my Halloween picture/xmas card to church tomorrow to show you. I dug it out just for you. Love,



Your turn...