Happy Halloween!

I made this Halloween card much too late, but hopefully Little Man's aunts and uncles, grandmas and grandpas won't mind!

I hope you enjoy a spooktacular day today.  I'm excited to eat candy all.day.long!

Here's wishing that your Halloween is full of lots of treats and a few tricks!!

Boys Club Halloween Party

On Wednesday, we celebrated Halloween with Little Man's Boys Club.  We have a really fun group of boys--all who live within 5 minutes of our house.  Besides going to church together, these boys will all be in the same grade at school. Every Wednesday, we rotate houses, and the boys play together.  This has been SO good for Little Man to learn social skills and have a group of friends he feels comfortable with.

I have always wanted to throw a Halloween party, so this was the perfect opportunity!  We had such a great time with these cute boys.  Of course I took too many pictures, and I can't narrow down my favorites, so bring on the photo overload:

 

We drew some faces on thsee balloons to make them look like jack-o-lanterns, tied them to some baby jars full of candy corn, and created some easy centerpieces!  Each boy took home a balloon as a favor at the end of the party.

 

I used some happy polk-a-dot wrapping paper as a table runner...

 

Little Man picked out some Halloween fabric at JoAnn's, and I sewed 4 easy chair covers for our chairs.

This adds such a festive touch--I think I'll do the same for every holiday!

 

Sweet hubby got up early to pick up some orange helium balloons. Thanks babe! :)

 

Each boy had a chalkboard bat with his name written on it for their place setting.

Before eating lunch, they created jack-o-lantern faces with orange paper plates and sticky foam.

 

As the boys arrived, they played with ghost balloons.

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The Countdown Is On to Halloween!

There is just one week left until Halloween.

Are you ready?

We have our costumes, and our candy is prepared for the trick-or-treaters.  This week we are gearing up for a fun Halloween party for Little Man's friends.  I can hardly wait!  We have some fun games and treats in mind for these little friends.  Stay tuned for more details on that later this week!

This year, I have had tons of fun decorating our house inside and out for Halloween.  I am not a huge fan of the gory, gothic parts of Halloween.  I like the fun parts of the holiday!  This year, I have really been into black and white.  And also glitter.  And also sweets.  (That is pretty typical no matter what time of year!)

 

Here are just a few ways that Halloween has crept its way into our home:

I made these fun glittery B-O-O plaques to hang in my living room.  I love those blinged-out letters!

Our Halloween advent calendar has been getting plenty of good use!

Little Man won't let me forget that he needs a piece of candy every morning right after breakfast as we count down the days to Halloween.

 

I added some festive candy corn to my DIY mason jar apothecary jars.

I'm not even a huge candy corn fan, but lately I find them irresistible when they're just sitting there on my counter!

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Spider Web Pancakes

I love traditions--LOVE them.  And it seems like every year, I am adding more and more new fun traditions to our holiday routines.  In the past, we have always enjoyed a delicious Halloween breakfast of pumpkin waffles made into jack-o-lantern faces.  And they are tasty for sure.

But I had a new idea that I tried out over the weekend.  Now I can't wait for Halloween to hurry up and get here so we can eat these spider web pancakes!

Especially after our Insects unit in Mommy School, I think Little Man will love these!

So here is what I did...

I mixed up our favorite batch of buttermilk pancakes. Yummmmm!

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The 13 Nights of Halloween

You've heard of the Twelve Days of Christmas.

When I taught first grade, we celebrated the Thirteen Nights of Halloween.  I am looking forward to introducing this fun activity to Little Man for the very first time this Halloween! I just know he's going to love it!

For the last 13 days of October (we'll begin on October 19 and finish on October 31!), the Phantom Ghost of Halloween will leave Little Man a mysterious letter along with a clue about a Halloween picture to find around the house.  So each morning when he wakes up, he will know that he will be hunting around the house for something spooky.

 

Our letter in the morning (on Day 10, for example) might say something like:

Dear Little Man,

On the 10th day of Haunted Halloween, I give you 10 skeletons rattling, 9 bats a-flying, 8 werewolves howling, 7 lizards creeping, 6 spinning spiders, 5 pounds of worms, 4 cackling witches, 3 jack-o-lanterns, two hairy toads, and a spooky owl in a gnarled tree.

Have a spooky day!

The Phantom Ghost of Halloween

And then we will go hunt down the picture of the 10 skeletons to add to the collection of other pictures found from the previous days!

Here are all the spooky things that Little Man will be hunting down:

         Day 1 - A spooky owl in a gnarled tree

         Day 2 - Two hairy toads

         Day 3 - Three jack-o-lanterns

         Day 4 - Four cackling witches

         Day 5 - Five pounds of worms

         Day 6 - Six spiders spinning

         Day 7 -Seven lizards creeping

         Day 8 - Eight werewolves howling

         Day 9 - Nine bats a-flying

         Day 10 - Ten skeletons rattling

         Day 11 - Eleven black cats hissing

         Day 12 - Twelve vampires nibbling

         Day 13 - Thirteen ghosts a-booing

And guess what??  I scanned all of my files (I colored them myself!), so if you're interested, you can download your very own--and you won't even have to color your own!  Just print on cardstock and laminate for durability!

The bats and skeletons clip art are DJ Inkers.

Clip art designs &/or fonts copyright Dianne J Hook. Used with permission from DJ Inkers.  LOVE DJ Inkers!

 

You can download your own 13 Nights of Halloween here.

A little head's up:  When you click the link, Google Docs will take you to a page that says "Preview Unavailable."  Don't panic!  Click Download and you will be taken to the PDF document including all the pictures and the master list.

I hope you enjoy these!

It's just one more way to "spookify" your 2011 Halloween!

DIY Mr. Potato Head Costume

This post was originally posted as part of The Train to Crazy's Handmade Dress-Up DIY series.  Andrea had oodles of fun costume ideas at her place, so check them out!

Normally I like to be a little secretive about our family's Halloween costumes.  Halloween Night becomes the big reveal!  But this year, I'm letting you in on a little secret.  You get the first glimpses of what we are planning to wear for Halloween 2011.  And guess what?  If you've been around for a little while, you'll probably recognize these costumes!  That's right:  This overworked, underpaid Mommy is recycling costumes from Little Man's birthday party for Halloween.   But Little Man couldn't be happier. :)

In our house, it's never a matter of what movie.  It's which number:  Toy Story 1, 2, or 3.  We live and breathe Toy Story!  So naturally, this year we are all dressing up as Toy Story characters.

When Little Man turned two, I threw him a Toy Story birthday party.  You might remember he dressed up like Buzz Lightyear, and we asked all of our guests to dress up like Toy Story characters too!

Our guests were great sports!   To join in on the fun, Mr. Oopsey Daisy and I dressed up like Mr. and Mrs. Potato Head.

I sewed our costumes in 1 afternoon, and they were a piece of a cake!

Are you ready to learn how to make your own?

If you're still wondering what to be this Halloween, I promise you can whip up this costume in no time at all!

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Halloween Subway Art & Glittered Witches’ Hats

This was my guest post for Miss Lovie's Spooky Scary Halloween series.  You will find tons of fun Halloween ideas there!

Happy Monday, my friends!

I hope you enjoyed your weekend!

I can't believe that this year I have been such a slacker.  I had the best intentions of decorating for Halloween over the weekend.  However, I woke up early Saturday with a nasty bug.  I was in bed all day long... so the Halloween decorations will just have to wait a few more days!

But I do have one little area nicely decorated and ready for Halloween...

Do you remember eighteen25's Christmas subway art and glitter trees from last year?  Well, they inspired me to make my own glitter witch's hats and Halloween subway art!

This sparkling display is brightening up my living room right now!

First, I created this Halloween subway art in Photoshop.

To make your own:

You can download your own 16x20 print here.

I printed it mine at Costco for the cheapest rate I could find.  I threw it in a frame, and I was done!

Piece of cake.

To create the witches' hats, I bought 3 styrofoam cones and 3 wooden circles at Hobby Lobby.

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Black and White Pumpkins {2 tutorials}

Over the weekend, I dug out my decorations for fall.

Admittedly, I've been pretty terrible with decorating for holidays lately.  Besides digging out my plastic Easter eggs during the spring, our decorations are simply creating dust in the basement.  But not now.  I'm busy decorating for fall!  Of course my old decorations needed a few new additions, so I got to work.

I have always been a huge fan of black and white.  So I am in LOVE with these beauties on my front porch.  Both of these pumpkins were inspired by pictures I found on Pinterest.  (Pinterest is definitely my new go-to source of inspiration!)

Just because it's Monday and I could use a double dose of something wonderful, today I want to share TWO easy pumpkin tutorials with you:

A jeweled spider pumpkin

PLUS a tights (or panty hose!) pumpkin

Let's get started...

Normally I'm not a big creepy crawly fan, but I am lovin' this jeweled spider!!

I bought a large white pumpkin at Michael's.  Here's what I did..

1.  I just had to try out the new Martha Stewart line!  So I mixed the glaze with the acrylic "pearl" paint.  I got a lovely shade with tons of shine and texture.

2.  I gave the pumpkin a few coats and let it dry.

3.  Also at Michael's (there was a great sale!), I purchased a spider jewel sticker by Martha once again.  I found some black jewels that matched the color and size of the spider fairly well to create the spider's trail.

4.  Once the paint was dry, I applied all of the jeweled stickers to the pumpkin.  Easy enough!

 

Here is my finished spider pumpkin!

Prettiest spider I've ever seen.

 

Now on to tutorial #2!  I have seen a few versions of panty hose pumpkins and I had been dying to try it out!

I found these 2 lovely little orange pumpkins at Wal-Mart for cheap.  I tore off the stems and gave these little guys a shade of Heirloom white spray paint.

 

I had an old pair of tights laying around--lucky for me it had an interesting pattern!  So I cut the tights in half--one leg for each pumpkin!

 

I just squished the pumpkin through the leg of the tights.  It was a bit tricky to get it to fit at first, but it just took a bit of pushing.  I tied a knot at the bottom of the pumpkin and cut off the extra.

 

At the top, I decided I wanted something stem-like.  So I stuck in a finial that happened to fit beautifully where the stem was.  Then I hot glue the bit of tights left around it to create a stem.

 

I LOVE how this turned out.  I love how the pattern of the tights gives the pumpkin so much personality!

 

These just makes me happy.

So how are YOU decorating for fall??

 

Festive Halloween Soaps

I originally posted about these Halloween hand soaps at Every Creative Endeavor's Fall Fever.  Be sure to check out Amanda's blog for more Fall inspiration!
************
I know it's only September, but I am already itching for Halloween to arrive!
When is it TOO early to decorate for Halloween?  I have an adorable little Pottery Barn owl that is begging to make an appearance!

 

I was thrilled when I saw Bath and Body Works' new line of Halloween hand soaps launch back in August.  They were adorable! My first inclination was to purchase at least a dozen or so-- Mr. Oopsey Daisy had to hold me back!  But then I realized I could create my very own festive Halloween hand soaps for a fraction of the cost!
Are you ready to make your own?
  
I started out by purchasing a handful of soaps at the dollar store.
I was hoping to find a soap that was already orange. Instead, I simply purchased clear soaps and added a few drops of food coloring to color it orange. I just used the hand pump to mix it up!  (Before adding the food coloring, I did a bit of research first to be sure it wouldn't dye our hands!  Most soaps already have dyes in them, and as long as the dye is mixed up, it will NOT dye your hands.  Pretty cool!)
Peeling off the labels was a piece of cake!  I just used a bit of Goo Gone to completely remove the label stickiness.  Love that stuff!
Next, I found some darling Halloween images in the Silhouette library.  I found several jack-o-lantern faces for each of the orange soaps.  And a haunted house for the purple soap.  I used the Silhouettte Studio to size the images correctly...
And then I cut them out of black vinyl using my Silhouette machine.  (If you don't have a Silhouette, you could do something very similar using black stickers or even by printing and applying a transparency.)
Then I applied the vinyl to each soap.
I added a bow to each soap, and that was it!
I plan on giving these out as little gifts to teachers and friends.
A simple project... but these will add so much fun and festivity to our house!

Spider Oreo Snacks

Back to School time really motivated me to start up Mommy School again!

We took the summer off, but once I saw the school buses around our neighborhood, I was ready!  For the last couple of weeks, we have been loving our "I is for Insects" unit.  This week I decided to surprise Little Man with a "spider snack" after his nap.

He loves Oreo cookies.  He honestly prefers Oreos over my homemade cookies.  Tragic, huh?  I am still working on that... Anyway, I knew he would fall in love with these little spiders, and I was right!  This was probably my 'Coolest Mom' moment of the week.  We sat down and enjoyed Oreo spiders with milk!

 

Although I had hoped to dip these spiders in chocolate, I realized only had vanilla candy wafers on hand.  So this was a great time to teach Little Man about white albino spiders!!

These were SUPER easy to make...

I started out with a bowl of vanilla candy wafers.

 

I melted them for just 30 seconds in the microwave and mixed them up well.

We always have Double Stuff Oreos on hand at our house!  Seriously. We have at least 2 packages at all times.  It's like our food storage.

 

I wedged a pretzel stick inside the Oreo and dipped it in the candy.  I resisted the urge to eat it up right then and let it cool on wax paper.  (You could also speed up the process by sticking them in the refrigerator!)

I dipped 4 pretzel sticks (broken in half) in the candy wafers too, and wedged them in each side for the spider's legs.  I added mini chocolate chip eyes and a sour straw mouth before they set up, too.

 

We used M&M's for these eyes.

And my little bumblebee gobbled up his spider! In fact, he begged for another one!

So we made a couple more.  They were YUMMY!

If you're searching for a healthier option, you could try out Ritz crackers and peanut butter!

Enjoy your weekend, my friends!

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