For my kiddos, Halloween night is one of the best of the year. As they get older, it is becoming harder for me to let them have the freedom they desire. Here are a few tips I have found that help us understand how they can have fun and keep me staying confident that they are safe throughout the night.
- Set boundaries. I pull up our neighborhood on Google Maps and highlight a circle that is a few blocks around our home. I make sure that they know where they are and are not allowed, even if that means we need to go for a drive the day before.
- Find friends in the neighborhood. Whether we stay home or visit friends to trick-or-treat with, we like to establish a group. After we know the boundaries, we have partners and groups. My little boy has a hard time staying on track or with a group so I set rewards for my kids if I hear they stayed with the group. For example, if they stay together all night without wondering off, they get to be the DJ for an entire day on every car ride (it’s really the highlight of their days)!
- Part of staying in a group means don’t go into anyones house- even if you know them! Walking from house to house might get chilly, but don’t get in the car with anyone (they won’t let you DJ like I do ;).
- Stay well lit. Walking through dark streets can be spooky. I add reflective gear to my kiddos by adding sparkles to my sons poofy lions mane, reflective tape to my daughters firefighter suite, and make sure they are equipped with glow sticks and flashlights that wrap around their little wrists.
- When my kids thought I really was super-woman and wanted me to trick-or-treat with them, I learned quickly to wear good shoes! Wonder woman can wear Nike’s, right?
- Before they go out, I safety pin/ tape a little zip lock to the inside of their treat bag. I always let them know that before they eat the candy that I need to look it over. Having them go out without me, I had to reinstate that rule. Ifthey got anything that looks like it isn’t in it’s original wrapper, I make sure to toss it right away. Now that they are more accountable, I rely more on them to understand what should and should not be eaten. If they aren’t comfortable with it, toss it in the zip lock and then that goes in the trash when they get home.
To round out our night, what’s better than a tasty, spooky snack to enjoy with my littles while watching our favorite Halloween movie? Here are a couple of our favorites:
Peanut Butter Spider Cookies
Recipe By: What’s for dinner, mom?
- 1/2 cup shortening
- 1/2 cup peanut butter
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 1 egg, beaten
- 2 tablespoons milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup white sugar for rolling
- 24 chocolate candy spheres with smooth chocolate filling (such as Lindt Lindor Truffles), refrigerated until cold
- 48 decorative candy eyeballs
- 1/2 cup prepared chocolate frosting
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F(190 degrees C). Line baking sheets with baking parchment.
- Beat shortening, peanut butter, brown sugar, and 1/2 cup white sugar together with an electric mixer in a large bowl until smooth. Beat egg into the creamy mixture until fully incorporated. Stir milk and vanilla extract into the mixture until smooth.
- Mix flour, baking soda, and salt together in a small bowl; add to the wet mixture in the large bowl and stir until completely incorporated into a dough. Divide and shape dough into 48 balls.
- Spread 1/4 cup white sugar into a wide, shallow bowl. Roll dough balls in sugar to coat and arrange about 2 inches apart onto prepared baking sheets.
- Bake in preheated oven until golden brown, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove cookies from oven and quickly press a dimple into the middle of each cookie using the blunt end of a wooden spoon. Cool cookies on sheets for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.
- Cut each chocolate sphere into two hemispheres. Put one piece atop each cookie with the rounded side facing upwards.
- Spoon frosting into a pastry bag with a small round tip or a plastic freezer bag with one end snipped off. Dab a small amount of frosting onto the back of each candy eyeball and stick two onto each chocolate candy to resembleeyes. Then pipe frosting in four thin lines, starting at the base of the candy, on each side atop the cookie to resemble spider legs.
- Let frosting harden at room temperature, about 30 minutes. Store cookies in an airtight container.
Mummy Hotdogs with Spider Web Dip
Recipe By: http://www.thecookingmom.com
- 1 can (8 ounces) seamless refrigerated crescent dough sheet
- 10 hot dogs
- Ketchup and mustard
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Unroll dough to make 1 large rectangle. Use a pizza cutter to cut the dough into thin strips. You should have about 40 strips of dough. Wrap about 4 pieces of dough around each hot dog to make it look like bandages. Leave about a 1/2 inch opening near the top for the face to peek out.
- Place wrapped hot dogs on a baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray. Bake 12 to 15 minutes or until dough is golden. Serve with ketchup and mustard for dipping. You can also use mustard or a can of spray cheese to make the eyes on the mummy.
Why not make a ketchup/mustard spider web for dipping. It’s easy! Just fill a small bowl with ketchup. Squeeze mustard bottle to make two circles on top of the ketchup and a dot in the middle of the bowl. Use a toothpick to pull the mustard out from the center to make it look like a spider web. Too cool!