I’ve put together a spooktacular montage of some of the DIY Halloween projects so far this month. Some I did myself, some I did with my 9-year-old boys I nanny and others are with my 3-year-old grandson. Most can be modified for all ages! Most of these projects (except the peanut chocolate truffles) are featured in previous posts in greater detail.
I carved this star for 3 year old Brodey on letter K day (I hid a K inside and had it outside the front door so he could peek inside for the clue about what letter we were learning that day) We also talked about the star shape.
Inside the condo, I had this cute Kitten pumpkin. (The 9 year old boys I nanny are going to be making a Garfield pumpkin for a contest they are entering, they will add more detail I’m sure, but we will use this same idea to start)
This pumpkin with a cut out for a strobe light was used on Letter L day.
For non- carved pumpkins (which I recommend if you are decorating more than 2 days before Halloween) You could paint designs on the pumpkins but for these I used stickers and tape. They will stay fresh for weeks.
I used this pumpkin for 3-year-old Brodey on Letter M day. M is for mask. We already had this batman mask.
This candy corn pumpkin was inspired by Rachel Ray magazine. I used a rubber band to mark the pumpkin into 1/3’s and painted the lower section white and the upper third yellow. I realized after I painted the bottom section that I did the colors backwards from an actual candy corn.
My favorite is this caterpillar, also inspired by Rachel Ray magazine. I painted these medium size pumpkins green and then painted random large green dots and painted some round label stickers gold, layering some dots and having some stand alone dots. I also used 2 painted gold dots for eyes, and dotted the centers with a black sharpie marker. I poked bent pipe cleaners for antenna with 2 more painted gold dots, back to back, on each antenna tip. This caterpillar was so fun to make!
Orange doesn’t look good in your house? Paint it! Any color!
2. Cooking with kids
This is a giant frosted sugar cookie that the boys decorated with candy corns and pumpkin candies. See complete instructions on October 4 post.
Fudge! We didn’t decorate this fudge because I hadn’t bought my adorable Halloween sprinkles yet but I wish I had! See this recipe in detail in my October 7 post.
Roasted pumpkin seeds. If you only do one new thing this October, please let it be roasting your seeds from your pumpkins! Just promise me you will try them. There are only 3 ingredients besides the seeds. (Worcestershire sauce, salt, butter) These ingredients are probably already in your kitchen. The recipe is in detail on my October 11 post.
Peanut Chocolate Truffles. The 9 year old boys made these almost completely by themselves. We used the microwave version of the recipe from the Betty Crocker’s New Boys and Girls Cookbook. They put 6 ounces of chocolate chips, 1/2 cup peanut butter, 2 Tablespoons milk and 2 Tablespoons of butter with a dash of salt. in a microwave dish covered with microwavable plastic wrap, leaving an opening for steam. Microwaved on 50% power for 3 minutes (this is the part I help because the bowl and chocolate are hot!) stir until it’s smooth. Cover and refrigerate 1 1/2 hours to firm. (I know thats hard to wait!) This is a good chance to challenge the kids to get their homework and chores done by time the chocolate is firm. Then shape into teaspoon size balls and gently roll in candy decorations. We used these adorable Halloween mixtures but could also be for any holiday. You can eat them now or cover and refrigerate for later.
I made this cute candy dish with a Pampered Chef bowl I already had. I bought a small package of large confetti (I didn’t know confetti came this large) I picked out the bat confetti and bent the wings to give them dimension and hot glued a dot of glue to each body. I am going to pop the bats off after Halloween since this is one of my favorite bowls. If you are doing that, don’t use a painted bowl as it would probably ruin the paint under the hot glue. A disposable bowl would work here also as long as it could take the heat of the glue.
This pine cone garland will last all the way through the holiday season! I made one that I gave to my daughter for her mantle, see my October 1 post for instructions. I also made one with the 9 year old boys.
That should be enough ideas to get you and your goblins started and your creativity flowing.
Tip: The best prices on large pumpkins I have seen is Walmart; the smaller ones as well as the bumpy, and different colored ones are cheapest at Trader Joes.