A lot of celebrations have had to change this year. Coronavirus has meant that birthdays, weddings and now Halloween have had to tweaked and rearranged to fit in with the new rules and safety guidelines. Our usual way to celebrate Halloween is to do fun crafts, choose a costume and go Trick or Treating on the streets near our house (then come back home to give out sweets). This year, I have had to rethink our norm so I thought I’d share some ideas for activities for alternate Halloween.
- Trick or Treating
Ok, ok, I know I said that these were ALTERNATIVES but hear me out. So I had a couple of ideas of how we can see enjoy the fun of Trick or Treating.
- Group together with friends and family – if you’re lucky enough to live close enough maybe you can arrange a timetable where you can just knock on each others doors at particular time. That way you aren’t going to be putting your hand in a bowl that multiple families have touched (have sealed sweets which you can empty into a bowl to eat – washing hands after touching packaging). You can maintain social distancing as you say a quick hello and ‘omg look at you’s’.
- Use your own house – hide a treat in each room of the house and close the doors. Your child has to knock and say ‘Trick of Treat’ before entering and then have to try and find the hidden treat (or trick, if you fancy making things more fun).
- Do a community scavenger hunt where you check off spooky items off a list and get a treat for each one you find. Tired But Crafty Mummy has a fantastic one which we’ll be using. Click here to find the downloadable sheet.
2. Party at home
Just because Halloween wont be the same as previous years, it doesn’t mean it can’t be fun. Set up your own party at home with games, activities, decorations, yummy food and a spooky movie. Depending on the size of your house or garden maybe have a party with a friend (keeping to social distancing rules and number of people – currently 6, so we could have us 4, plus my friend and her son). I plan on having my friend over and will set up activities in the garden for them to take turns on and clean in between use. We’ll have ‘spooky snacks’ on the table and maybe even some spooky music (or movie on in background – Nightmare Before Christmas has great songs). Even if plans change and out friend can’t come over, it would still make for a fun day/evening with just us!
- Apple Bobbing (not advised if outside people are coming over but great for households).
- Pin the hand on the zombie (draw a Zombie on large paper or print one from the internet, and then cut out a hand from some cardboard and add either a pin, cellotape or blu-tac for child/adult to try and add to the zombie whilst wearing a blindfold).
- Musical Monsters (monster dance to some music, stop/sit down when the music stops – last one to sit/first to move is out).
- Board Games (Orchard Toys has a Magic Cauldren game, there’s also alternative version of Operation such as monster, Hulk etc for a Halloween theme, Monopoly where you replace money for sweets/healthy version of sweets).
- Sensory Trays – create tubs ,trays, boxes of sensory fun. It can be messy such as ‘jelly or spaghetti worms’, ‘broccoli brains’ or use other senses such as visuals with lights, smells with different foods. We love sensory play so have some examples here that we’ve created.
Check out Pinterest which is FULL of amazing Halloween ideas!
3. Do some Halloween crafts
I love making things but they have to be quick and easy in our household. Here’s some we’ve tried in the past…
- Stickers – created pictures and scenes using Halloween stickers we have brought online.
- Decorate mugs and things for the home – you can buy sets on Baker Ross (I’ve put a link to one here).
- Paper chains – use orange, black, red paper and cut into strips then create your own paper chains to hang around the house…or buy premade ones – again, we got ours from Baker Ross (which I can promise you were weren’t paid or gifted to do).
- Make your own Halloween playdough (use Halloween colours such as orange, black, green and red so you can make monsters, pumpkins, witches etc). You can add different scents too (eg: apple scented conditioner or hand soap can be added for apple smell, or buy scents to add).
- Make ghosts (Get a pingpong ball, scrunched up material, rice etc and put onto white napkins, white cloth, old white school tshirts cut up. Then twist to make it into a head. Using thread to tie the ‘neck’ so the bits used to make the head don’t fall out (I used string which in the dark looked fine but in the light didn’t work as well). There you have a ghost to hang up).
- Decorate the pumpkin … this may sound obvious but if you aren’t heading out Trick or Treating or wanting Trick or Treaters at your door then there’s no rush to get the pumpkin ready and outside. You can spend halloween exploring and playing with the pumpkin. There’s some ideas here if you want some ‘mess free’ ideas.
4. Create a Halloween Surprise Box
Have you seen Christmas Eve Boxes? Well, create something similar. You can put together a box of bits to surprise your child with and make Halloween day/evening that bit more exciting.
Suggestions of what to put in:
- Dressing up outfit or Halloween Themed PJ’s (Try charity shops or Facebook marketplace to buy second hand since it’s only for one night).
- Treats and goodies to each (popcorn, sweets, chocolate, fruit in funny shapes)
- Movie to watch – or create a ‘voucher’ with the name of the movie that you know is on Netflix/Amazon Prime etc.
- Baking Set eg: already weighed cookie ingredients with Halloween shaped cutters.
- Halloween themed books.
- Halloween/spooky board game/card game/puzzle
5. Find Places to Visit (safely)
Some events have been cancelled and others have been ‘tweaked’. It’s worth having a look on local facebook pages or having a quick online search. Just remember that lots of places are doing bookings so look up places and book early. Check out your local…
- Woodland Parks
- Theme Parks…feel free to comment below with places that you recommend.
- Sea Life Centre (I wrote a review of our visit to their ‘Scarium Event’)
My friend Kaz, has written a blog with ideas of places to visit, click here to read it. We are planning on still going for our yearly trip to Undley Park Farms to pick a pumpkin, ride the donkeys and explore the stalls. This year they haven’t got the amusements such as the bouncy castles due to Covid but we still plan on having a great visit.
There’s often a lot of pressure on social media to do a lot for Halloween. But remember that this year is a very challenging one and if you don’t have the time, money or energy to do anything spectacular then don’t. Pick and choose what you think your kids will enjoy. Basically, do what is right for YOUR FAMILY. Whatever you choose to do on 31st October, I have you have a lovely day.