Keep Your Diet in Check on Halloween

The biggest problem with these Halloween sweets is that they have plenty of calories per serving and little nutritional value. Plus, the smaller fun-size treats often fool dieters into thinking that they can eat multiple pieces without harming their diets. But t only takes 9 of these mini-candy bars to add a quarter of a pound of fat to your body.

Beyond candy, Halloween is also filled with other indulgent treats. Whether it is pumpkin pie, gooey popcorn balls, or sweet candied apples, there is no shortage of calories during the month of October.

What can you do?

Obviously, there is no way that you can totally eliminate candy from Halloween with spoiling all of the fun. So here are some tips to help you stick to your diet, while still allowing yourself the occasional sweet indulgence.

Walk when trick-or-treating. Not only is it a good idea to supervise your kids while they are out trick-or-treating, it will help you burn some extra calories while you do it, even if you are walking slowly.

Store leftovers in the cupboard. If you leave the Halloween candy out in plain sight, you will be more likely to indulge in the occasional snack. Storing it in an unmarked container in the cupboard will help reduce the temptation to have a taste.

Wait until Halloween to buy candy. Yes, it does mean a little bit of last minute shopping, but having candy in the house prior to Halloween is merely a temptation to eat it. If waiting until Halloween to shop is just not practical with your schedule, only buy candy that you personally don’t care for.

Provide candy alternatives. Whether it is treats for the trick-or-treaters or munchies for your Halloween party, thinking healthy when you shop can help keep diet damaging foods to the minimum. Consider handing out stickers or pencils to trick-or-treaters, and look for veggie trays with healthy dips and other low fat snacks for your party.

Give Halloween candy a deadline. Choose a date when all Halloween candy needs to be out of the house or eaten by the kids. Any remaining candy on that day should be thrown out. Alternatively, divide up surplus candy into freezer bags and store in the freezer. This will help prevent the temptation to snack.

Focus on other activities. If you can, consider skipping trick-or-treating altogether and focus on an activity that doesn’t center around food. Hayrides, haunted houses, and bonfires can all be fun activities that the whole family can participate in.

Of course, if you can’t keep your Halloween temptations to a minimum, your other alternative is to spend some extra time at the gym working the pounds off. The choice is up to you.

It’s Not Too Early To Be Thinking About A Great Halloween Mask!

Although historical Halloween has some sinister beginnings, today Halloween means dressing up in costumes and having a wonderful time. Parties, dressing up at work, decorating the house all are part of the festivities that have become Halloween. To really get into the whole Halloween thing however must include not only a great costume but also a great Halloween mask. The costume is rather simple to obtain as there are costume shops in most major cities and it’s even possible to order a particular costume on the web for delivery just before Halloween. Although you may now have the clothing to look like your favorite character or monster, your face still is easily recognizable. This is where a high quality Halloween mask can really come into play.

If there’s a choice between a fancy costume or a great Halloween mask and makeup, definitely take the mask. The reason is that although the costume can complete a certain look any character you can imagine can also wear basic street clothes. Consider the strong heavily made-up character, a clown. Yes, it’s great to have a funny costume and big shoes, but a clown could also wear a business suit or some pajamas and be just as fun. How about a basic witch or warlock? A good Halloween mask and makeup and a cape can make a wonderful witch. So if the character you want to be for Halloween needs face or hand makeup, remember it’s the Halloween mask and interaction with the character that will be memorable, not the costume.

Halloween masks come in a variety of styles and types. The most popular and easiest to obtain is the full head latex type masks. These are the type that are available in all the Halloween shops that seem to open up the first part of October and disappear November 1st. These masks come pre colored and decorated and unfortunately also look like you’re wearing a mask.

Another option is simply makeup. Theatrical makeup is easily obtained and does a fairly good job if used along with stick on type appliances. Appliances are small pieces of pre formed costume latex in shapes like scars, gashes and other more gruesome things. The only problem is that many of the appliances that are easily available tend toward the more gruesome type characters, The idea is to apply the scars etc. first then finish off with the makeup to hide the edges of the appliances. All in all, a good, though somewhat limited Halloween mask idea.

The best idea of all however are full facial appliances. These are theatrical grade latex masks that can are applied directly to your face and give an extremely realistic appearance. These appliances can literally transform anyone into a wide variety of characters. Wizards, warlocks, clowns, monsters, etc. They can even age someone into their 80′s or 90′s. The biggest benefit of these types of Halloween mask is that they allow you the opportunity to become the character. You friends and guests will not remember that you dressed up for Halloween but that you actually were that favorite hobbit or troll.

Now however is the time to order your Halloween mask, adhesives, and makeup. It will take a few tries to get it right and you don’t want to worry about it on Halloween night. Take the time now to find that perfect Halloween mask and learn how to make this Halloween the most memorable for everyone.

Keep Halloween from Breaking the Bank

Halloween costumes are creative and they continue to evolve each year with new and innovative materials, ideas and technology. The price can also evolve, thus, if you are strapped for cash, but still want to have a memorable Halloween, here are some tips for you.

Keep costumes traditional

The majority of the budget is often spent on Halloween costumes. The selection of costumes varies every year, with the current trend in movies and TV often influencing what is popular. In fact, you may see more Spiderman and Hannah Montana costumes on Halloween night than your traditional Dracula and fairy princess.

If you want to stretch your Halloween costume dollars, consider returning to the more traditional costumes and putting your own spin on them. You can often buy Halloween costume accessories, like clown noses, princess tiaras, and vampire teeth, inexpensively. You can then combine these other accessories such as capes, wands, and swords for an inexpensive, yet fun and creative costume.

Buy treats in bulk

Another big expense on Halloween night is in the purchasing of treats to hand out to the trick or treaters that will come ringing your bell. If you live in a neighborhood that sees a lot traffic on Halloween night, you can end up spending a small fortune in Halloween treats.

One of the easiest ways to avoid this is to buy in bulk. Warehouse stores can offer you candy for much less than the grocery store – and in big bags. If you are looking for a healthier alternative to the fun size candy bar, you can also look for bulk packaging of popular snack foods that are individually wrapped into single servings.

Another alternative is to skip the food altogether and choose a treat alternative. Dollar stores, party supply stores, toy stores, and even teacher supply stores can be a great source of Halloween-themed items like toys, stickers, pencils, and novelties. These can be an inexpensive and fun alternative to the candy bar.

Keep decorations simple

A third expense for Halloween night is the decorations. Traditional jack-o-lanterns are cheap enough to create. However, if you want to create a spookier atmosphere, consider making decorations yourself. Cardboard tombstones, bed sheet ghosts, batting cobwebs, and other handmade decorations can be as spooky to young children as the electronic gizmos that are sold by retailers. Even a few well placed spot lights and candles can give your own home a creepy atmosphere.

Of course, if you really want some of the fancier, high tech Halloween decorations, consider shopping the clearance sales in November. You can get this year’s hottest decorations at a much lower cost and save them for future Halloweens.

Saving money on Halloween is all about shopping smarter and planning ahead. With a little forethought and creativity, you can come up with other Halloween money savers that will allow your budget to go a lot further this year.

The Top 10 Halloween Party Ideas for Children of All Ages

Planning a Halloween party can be a very fun thing to do. Whether you will be hosting adults, children, or a mix of both, Halloween parties are fun and exciting to have and to attend.

To help plan your Halloween party, and have it be the event of the year, here are some ideas to get you started in your planning:

Halloween Party Idea 1 – The first thing you need to do is to decide on a budget for your party and if you will be having adults, children, or both in attendance. Once you have made these decisions then it is time to start planning your event.

Halloween Party Idea 2 – Food and drinks are always a big part of any Halloween party. Here you can be very creative with items such as scabs other wise known as dried cranberries. Items such as bleeding cupcakes or things which look like eyeballs are generally a hit. Or you can go with a more traditional fare of cookies and candy.

Halloween Party Idea 3 – For beverages for your party you can make a great slimy punch out of lemonade, sugar, meringue powder, and seltzer water. To this add some green food coloring and stir. The mix will be slimy and frothy.

Halloween Party Idea 4 – Always a fun idea at Halloween parties is the addition of dry ice to beverages. This will make them send off fog and is always a hit with both adults and children.

Halloween Party Idea 5 – Decoration for Halloween is fun. You can make tombstones in the yard with simple Styrofoam cutouts and even hang lights and ghosts in your trees. Inside your home you can decorate with spider webs and other spooky items which you can purchase at any local store during the Halloween season.

Halloween Party Idea 6 – For a Halloween party you want your home to be dimly lit but not too dark so that people are tripping over things. Also a fog machine or cauldrons with dry ice in them can give a great effect.

Halloween Party Idea 7 – Music is always nice for a Halloween party. However, rather than have it playing in the room your guests will be in, try setting your tunes in a near-by room so that people can still talk and enjoy themselves. If you have a adult party use scarier music than if you are hosting children.

Halloween Party Idea 8 – Playing games is always a hit at any party. A fun game for adults is charades using scary movies and themes. For children, bobbing for apples can be fun if the weather and space allow for it. Also, contests for the best costume always go over well. (Let your guests know this on your invitations.

Halloween Party Idea 9 – If you want to amaze your friends, you can write secret messages on your drinking glasses. To do this, take a mixture of dish soap and water and write messages with it, using your finger, on the outside of some drinking glasses. Once you are finished place them in the freezer to frost over. As your guests drink, and the glasses warm, your messages will come into view. This is always something people will be amazed at and talk about for a long time to come.

Halloween Party Idea 10 – One of the best things you can do while you are planning any party, especially one for Halloween, is to go online and search for creative ideas. You will find a wealth of creativity to help you make the most of your party experience.

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Are Your Kids’ Halloween Costume Safe?

We want our kids to have fun during Halloween, but have you thought about the safety of their Halloween costumes? Most of us want our children to wear cool costumes when trick-or-treating, but neglecting a kids’ Halloween costume’s safety can turn that experience sour.

Are your kids’ Halloween costumes too dangerous to wear? Find out if those Halloween costumes are safe to wear, tips for buying safe kids’ Halloween costumes, and how your children can wear cool costumes without sacrificing safety.

Are Your Kids’ Costumes Really Safe to Wear?

Are your kids’ Halloween costumes really safe to wear? The answer is yes and no. In 2001, the Disney Store recalled 54,000 Princess Ariel costumes after one girl received burn injuries. Keep in mind that kids’ Halloween costumes are required by law to use flame-retardant materials.

Another problem is ventilation in full-masked Halloween costumes. Most costumes don’t provide enough ventilation for kids to breathe, resulting in carbon dioxide poisoning. If your child wants to wear a mask, nose holes aren’t enough. Carbon dioxide builds up over time, causing your anxious child to faint from the lack of oxygen. You want your child to wear a well-ventilated mask to prevent any nasty side-effects.

Another lesser problem with kids’ Halloween costumes is visibility. This isn’t just about how well your kids can see it’s also about how well people see them. A mask limits visibility. If little Joey can’t see where he’s going, he’ll trip and skin his knee. If costumes aren’t visible after dark, people — more importantly, vehicles — won’t see the kids’ Halloween costumes, blindly running over happy trick-or-treaters. Halloween costumes aren’t all bad news, however. Carefully selecting your kids’ costumes and preparing it for night wear eliminates these catastrophes.

How to Select Safe Kids Costumes for Halloween

Before buying your kids’ Halloween costumes, you’ll want to make sure it’s safe. Here are some guidelines:

o All kids’ Halloween costumes are required by law to use flame-retardant materials. You can’t depend on companies adhering to this law, however. Pick clothing that fits well and doesn’t hang. If your child wants to wear a cape, make sure the cape isn’t long. If your child wants to wear a dress, make sure it doesn’t drag on the ground. People love to decorate during Halloween, and some decorations include fire. If a loose costume accidentally brushes against this, it won’t be a happy Halloween!

o Masks should be well-ventilated. Masks should have multiple ventilation areas with big holes, such as hockey masks. Most masks have little ventilation, so skip these kids’ Halloween costumes if you can. If your child insists on looking like their favorite masked character, use makeup instead.

o Make sure that the mask’s eye holes are big enough. Holes should be twice the size of your child’s eyes. Make sure the mask lies flat on their face.

o If you can, stay away from dark clothing. It decreases visibility.

o Don’t pick anything that covers their face, such as a messy wig.

Once your kids’ Halloween costumes are selected, you’ll need to prepare it for night wear.

How to Make Your Kids’ Halloween Attire Safe

There are two ways to prepare your kids for a safe Halloween outing:

o Use reflective tape. This can be bought in most stores. Place two strips on your kids’ shoes and two strips on their Halloween costume. These strips shine in the dark and alert drivers.

o Have your kids carry a flashlight. If your kids don’t like it, find a flashlight with a strap. They can hang it from their wrists and keep it out of sight.

Of course some kids won’t like your safe ideas. Some kids want to wear full-face masks when trick-or-treating. Some won’t like wearing reflective tape. So how do you make your kids happy without sacrificing safety?

Getting Your Kids to Celebrate Halloween Safely

Getting your kids to like your safe ideas is difficult. Here are some suggestions:

o If your child insists on wearing a full-face mask, have your child wear it around the house for a while. Chances are your child won’t want to wear it any longer this Halloween.

o Does your child refuse to wear reflective tape on their Halloween costume? Put it on their bag instead.

o If your kids insist on long clothing, have them wear it around the house. They’ll get tired of it and opt for another kids’ Halloween costume.

If your children still refuse to wear safe kids’ Halloween costumes, talk to them about why it’s important to stay safe on Halloween. Illustrations or stories are very effective with younger children.

Again, it’s always important that your kids are safe this Halloween season, so start with their kids’ Halloween costumes. Make sure their costumes fit snugly, are marked with reflective tape, and don’t interfere with their visibility. It’s important to make the kids’ Halloween costumes safe so they have a happy, safe Halloween — a great Halloween you and your kids will remember for years to come.

Treats for Your Halloween Tricksters

If you are planning a Halloween party of any type, there is a good chance that food will be involved. However, with Halloween being a night of creeps and spooks, you might want to get a little more creative than the typical chips and dip. Here are some ideas for how to incorporate the themes of the season and the holiday into your kitchen.

Seasonal foods

Halloween comes at the end of fall, a time when there are plenty of fresh harvest items to enjoy. You can incorporate these into your Halloween dining for fresh, (and often inexpensive) delights.

One of the favorite Halloween traditions is the carving of the Jack-o-lantern. And as anyone who has ever carved a pumpkin knows, the glowing creation on your front steps on Halloween night leaves behind a pile of slimy pumpkin guts. However, you can use this pumpkin flesh to create delicious treats. Pumpkin cooks up well into pies, cookies, muffins, and soups that you can serve for your Halloween meal. And seasoned and roasted pumpkin seeds are a popular snack. You can always experiment with flavors to create your own delicious versions.

Another bountiful harvest item around Halloween is the apple. Apples work great fresh, candied, and baked into cakes, muffins, and pies. And of course there is always applesauce! If you are in need of some game ideas for your Halloween party, bobbing for apples has always been a long time favorite.

Other Treats

Of course, your ghouls and goblins are probably not thinking about healthy fruit when they are donning Halloween costumes. For many, Halloween is as much about the candy as it is about getting to dress up. So you will want to have plenty of sweet treats on hand as well.

Cookies are always a favorite with kids of all ages. You can use your favorite cookie dough flavor, and then shape it into fun Halloween shapes using cookie cutters. Bats, ghosts, and jack-o-lanternspumpkins all work well for shaped cookies. Or, you can choose to decorate your favorite cookies using orange, black, and white frosting andor sprinkles. If you are pressed for time, pre-shaped holiday cookies are often available at your local grocer.

If you are looking for another treat idea, popcorn is always fun. You can take your favorite popcorn ball recipe and fashion ghosts instead of balls. Add a few pieces of candy for eyes and a mouth, and you have a fun treat. Or, put fresh-popped popcorn into disposable plastic gloves, with a piece of candy at the finger tip, to create monster hands.

Getting creative

You can always turn your kid’s favorite foods into Halloween dishes with a little creativity. Food coloring can turn ordinary foods into creepy monster dishes. Decorate cupcakes with licorice legs and candy eyes to create spiders. Or simply get a little creative with how you serve everyday items to design your own spooky feast.

With a little work and a little creativity, you can come up with your own Halloween treats for your little tricksters.

Halloween Crafts

The only bad Halloween craft project is the Halloween craft project that takes too long. You know the ones. The craft projects that have so many steps that you’ve lost the attention of your kids before step 2. Give these easy Halloween craft ideas a try. They’re short they’re sweet they’re fun and the end results are spooktacular.

Antenna Characters

These adorable characters look great at the top of your automobile antenna. Hey, if your house is dressed up for Halloween, why shouldn’t your car? With various Halloween-themed colors of flat fun foam (orange, black, white, green), draw a light outline of a pumpkin, ghost, spider or Frankenstein head, approximately 4-inches tall and 3-inches wide. Cut out the shapes and with a single hole punch, punch two holes in each shape, one approximately one inch from the top of the shape and another hole approximately one inch from the bottom of the shape.

With glitter glue or permanent markers, decorate the shape with facial features, an outline or anything you’d like. Allow to dry thoroughly. Once dried, you can attach to your automobile antenna by placing the antenna through the bottom hole from the back of the shape to the front. Then place the antenna through the top hole, front to back. The Antenna Character should be secure and should withstand normal driving conditions.

Halloween Mosaics

Mosaic art using tiles is very popular nowadays. Kids can duplicate this popular craft using construction paper instead of tiles or glass.

Prior to gathering the children around the table, cut small squares of various colors of paper, orange, red, blue, yellow, white, black, green, etc.

On a piece of heavy stock, white paper, draw the outline of a pumpkin, Frankenstein or other Halloween character.

With a small dab of all-purpose glue on the back of each square, kids can mosaic their way to a uniquely creative masterpiece that can be framed and hung on the wall for many Halloween seasons to come.

Pumpkin Painting

In less than one hour, you and your child can create the most adorable pumpkin craft ready to proudly display in your home. Pumpkin Painting is the perfect activity for little goblins who aren’t old enough to handle the jack-o-lantern carving duties.

With simple supplies like acrylic paints, markers, newspaper and sealer, kids can paint whimsical, silly faces on their pumpkins. Or they can paint their favorite cartoon character, Halloween motif or harvest design. Painted pumpkins do not rot near as quickly as carved pumpkins so it is much more economical to paint pumpkins rather than carving them and it’s also much safer and more hands-on for toddlers since there is no knife involved.

Halloween Faq: Halloween Traditions Around The World

* Was Halloween originally a pagan or a Christian holiday?

Like the celebration of Christmas day, originally Halloween was a pagan festival rather than a Christian holiday. It was only around 10th century that the Roman Catholic Church established this holy day. This was initiated for purifying the spirits of the dead.

* What is the origin of trick-or-treating?

Trick-or-treating, a major Halloween tradition, is related to the soul cake day of Christian people, with a belief that the treat pacifies a mischievous spirit. Formerly, children who were trick-or-treating would vandalize houses that did not give them treats. They roamed around the neighborhood soliciting candy or other kinds of treats. This was became popular up to the 20th century.

It was in the year 1970 that the trick-or-treating tradition started to wane because of several rumors that some households were handing out harmful or poisonous treats to children. Today many parents accompany their children while trick-or-treating or organize private Halloween parties.

* Why is Halloween celebrated on October 31st?

Halloween is celebrated on October 31st because the Celtic people believed that it is the end of season of the sun and the start of season of darkness and cold due to winter. They believe that it is the time when evil spirits are most likely to roam the earth.

* Is Halloween celebrated on the same day around the world?

No. Halloween in some parts of the world may not even occur on October 31st. A number of countries celebrate Halloween on November 1 or 2. Other prefers to celebrate it at some other time, mostly during the fall or summer season.

* What countries celebrate Halloween?

Halloween is one of the oldest traditions and is celebrated around the globe. While many countries commemorate Halloween it is in North America and Canada where Halloween is most popular. Other countries that join in the celebration are Austria, Belgium, Canada, China, Czechoslovakia, England, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Ireland, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Latin America, Spain, and Sweden.

* How did Halloween get started in the U.S.?

The first-ever recorded Halloween celebration in the United States occurred in Anoka, Minnesota, in 1921. That was the start of trick-or-treat, Halloween costume parties, and a series of activities depicting the essence of the celebration.

* Why do we carve pumpkins for Halloween?

Carving of pumpkins is descended from earliest Irish tradition. Originally a turnip was used instead of a pumpkin. According to some stories, it was believed to ward off evil spirits.

When the Irish people began to immigrate to America, they realized that carved pumpkins were more realistic than turnips, as well as easier to carve.

Fabulous And Freaky Costumes For Halloween

What would Halloween be without all the costume parties? Dress up as your favorite ghost or ghoul says the invitation card. Then we have to answer the age-old question: What should I go as? Irrespective of whether we are horror movie fans, there is no denying that we all enjoy the idea of scaring other people. Halloween allows us to go about scaring people without being reprimanded in return. From children to senior citizens, we all love to dress up as our favorite ghouls. On the night of October 31 every year, our peaceful streets become infested by characters that seem to have walked right out of horror movies. It is like A Nightmare on Elm Street in real life.

Dressing up for Halloween is usually quite difficult. But it can also be one of the easiest things ever. Stitch up the sides of a big wide bed sheet, cut out two holes for the eyes, and a ghost costume shall be all ready for you. Of course, that could be simplifying things more than a little, unless one really wants to be a ghost. For the more complicated outfits, one can simply walk over to a costume rental store and choose the ideal costume.

There are so many outfits that you could choose from. You could go as a witch with a broom or as a zombie. You could buy one of those skeleton costumes where the bones are painted in luminous colors. The point is to look frightening. The question is how far would you go? These days, it is quite a bit easy to locate the perfect costume. Costume stores have costumes for people of all ages. So even if you want to stay away from looks out of The Rocky Horror Picture Show, you would still have many looks to choose from. Superhero movies usually provide a great deal of inspiration when it comes to Halloween costumes.

However, just the clothes will not complete your look. You need Halloween masks as well. Luckily, these days one can buy really realistic-looking Halloween masks. So if you are looking forward to making a grand entrance dressed as a zombie, don’t worry about finding the perfect make-up. There are bound to be terrific zombie masks to satisfy your need for blood and gore. Moreover, with the development of silicon masks that bear a closer resemblance to human flesh, Halloween costumes have become very realistic. Halloween costume parties just became a lot more fun.

Halloween Safety Tips and Suggestions

Most of my advice about Halloween safety for kids revolves around trick-or-treating. First things first, know what your children are planning to do. If they are going to a party at someone’s house, talk to the parents and make sure you know who is going, what will happen at the party, who will be supervising, and what time to expect your kids to return home. If your children are planning to go trick-or-treating, you need to sit down with them beforehand and plan out what route they will take.

General trick-or treating advice: avoid dimly-lit streets and parks, always travel in a group, carry a flashlight and wear reflective clothing to alert passing motorists, don’t enter a strange house or car. You may also want to talk with your child about his or her Halloween costume. Make sure the Halloween costume is comfortable to walk in for several hours, provides necessary warmth, and is safe to wear. Perhaps they can bring along an extra pair of shoes if those wrapped mummy Halloween costume sandals become uncomfortable!

Lastly, talk with your children about your expectations for the time they are out and about, whether they will be at a Halloween costume party or trick-or-treating in a Halloween costume. Warn against vandalism, animal cruelty, drug and alcohol use, cars, and other dangerous situations. Some parents even provide their children with a cell phone to use in case of an emergency.

Halloween Safety for Adults for Halloween Costume Parties

Although the following advice may be common sense, I’ll share it with you, just to be on the safe side. Halloween costume parties can be a wonderful way to get all your friends together, dress up in ridiculous Halloween costumes, eat delicious food, and dance the night away. But parties can also end poorly, both for the hosts and for the guests. Here are a few things to keep in mind.

For Halloween costume party hosts, make sure that you have provided appropriate food and drinks for your guests. You need to be aware of any allergies or dietary restrictions, and take extra steps so that everyone has something fun and festive to munch or sip. Be sure to put your household pets in a separate room, away from the noise and energy of your Halloween costume party. Take down and put away any fragile or cherished items. Remember that a Halloween costume party can quickly become a high-spirited dance party, and you don’t want anything of yours to be accidentally knocked over or stepped on.

As for Halloween costume party guests, remember that you are a guest in someone else’s home. Be respectful of their furniture, pets, knickknacks, and everything else. Also, be careful how much food and alcohol you consume. No one wants to be remembered as the Wicked Witch who danced the fox trot on the dining room table at the neighborhood Halloween costume party!