Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Have I Ever Mentioned How Much I LOVE Halloween??

I'm not sure why Halloween is such an intriguing and enticing holiday for me. .but I just ADORE it!!
No matter that it is the only day of the YEAR where it is completely acceptable and expected that even adults eat candy AS their evening meal. .Or whether it is the excitement of dressing up and being anyone in the world other than yourself for a few hours. .Or maybe it is the first morning-after words from a 3 year old's sleep thickened voice saying "Where's my candy?" with half opened eyes. I'm not sure I can put my finger on it exactly. .but the bottom line is. .
I LOVE Halloween!
Oh, the fun we had with these two little trick or treaters last night!!
We hooked up with my in-laws last evening and let the cousins have at it! A great time!! This morning, however. .Devin stayed home and was vomiting by noon!! As a mom, I'm so thankful that he didn't get sick yesterday!! Remember. .he was the one who missed his school field trip the last two years because of sickness!! He would have been crushed!
I wanted to show the halloween party highlights too! So here we go!
It ALWAYS starts with the creation of a roaster full of "mummy-dogs." I also fix punch in advance. .but moms are always gracious to bring yummy goodies for all to enjoy too!
This year I saw some cool food ideas to try out. .this one being cockroach ice cubes floating in the water jar. More than one kiddo did a double take when they noticed those. .and at least one little boy asked if it was still safe to drink it! Double HA!
The original photo I saw had a bowl of cheese balls with black spider rings in them. .I couldn't find spider rings. .do you believe that?? So I substituted little rubber rats! Turned out cool. .and easy!
I just had to keep this photo in, cause he is just so creeping-ly pirate-ish. .I just couldn't help myself!! So much. .that with my good imagination. .I could even imagine the way he would have smelled if I had met him on his ship! ICK!
Devin started the season as a transformer. .before his long torso and ill fitting one-piece suit called it quits and he reverted to the invisible man outfit in the first photo! I know exactly how he felt. .which was why I was so excited when some long-torsoed woman developed tankini swim suits!! But that's another story altogether.
Our numbers were around 37 kids and 32 adults hanging out this year! We did a couple relay races to start (and not one that included me and my crew blowing up a million balloons, as has been our reputation). This race was a wiggle worm race. .each kid had to put their arms through their legs, grabbing hands with the kid in front and back of them. .then they "wiggled" thru the obstacles. .trying to keep their worms together. They stunk!! Really bad. .but some of the kids were so little that I didn't feel right about making them go back and start over. .they were laughing and having fun. .so why be a rule stickler!
A little traffic jam and worm breakage occurred as they circled around Grant. He took it all in stride!
This photo included most of the kids. .a few still straggled in after the photo op.
Fear Factor Food was back on the agenda this year after a couple year break. The teams race to eat their foods as fast as they could. .usually we used things like caramel or chewy candies and really dry food like crackers. .This year though, I put a little gross factor into the game. .and the first thing they had to eat was 1/2 a sardine. The eyes got B-I-G when I made that announcement. The cats were on site about 15 seconds after the first can was opened. Out of about 15 kids playing the game. .only 2 started to cry BEFORE tasting it (we let them off the hook) and a few had to spit it out after getting it into the mouth. .but most of them actually chewed AND swallowed. .and some were heard to be commenting later that it really didn't taste that bad. .I have to attest to that. .cause I tried some sardines last week. .just to make sure I wasn't being too evil. They aren't as horrible as they smell. .and the cats surely did enjoy the leftovers!
This group was waiting in anticipation to try the sardines!
We also used small powdered donuts. Tristan decided we needed to pour "blood" on them. .and Jeremy held me to that. .making it himself right before the party started. I think they used corn syrup and food color. The kids were all over the nasty-factor of that too! And it took them significantly longer to choke those down. The third thing they had to eat was their choice of a dried apricot, a fig, or dried mango.
My neice and nephew seemed to enjoy their first encounter with these crazy Halloween-party-ing Kansans!!
There's the whole line of them waiting their turns. We try to divide up into bigger kids vs the little kids. .and the little ones get to do fun games and not freaky games! I was tickled to hear one mom marvel over the fact that her child was eating things that she would have NEVER, EVER tried at home!! The funny thing was that most of the kids had a "this-is-serious-business" look on their face when they ate. .and they didn't even bat their eyelashes!
We did bring the cooler out so they could wash their mouths if they needed too!! They weren't actually supposed to touch their mouths on the spigot. .which is how the stomach flu spreads :-)
I'm always glad for our swing set at the party. .cause there is usually someone playing on it the whole time. A good thing to do before the party starts. .and some kids don't really like to play the games. .so they hang out there, just taking it all in!
Grant helped with the really small kids this year. They played a candy corn relay. .I understand there was a lot of cheating going on. .but the oldest kids were about 3-4 years old. .so you might expect that. .they, too were having a great time. .sometimes you just have to overlook things!
They were a little small to be making mummies out of each other. .but I was tired of sifting through the leftover cheap toilet paper in my party box. .and they had a great time tearing it apart and starting over.
Another example of the swing getting good use!
Both big boys helped with the punkin' launch. .except I was too cheap to buy lots of little punkins this year, so I confiscated Tristan's leftover water balloon supply. As long as they could launch them. .it didn't really matter what they were.
In 9 years, we have NEVER. .nor will we EVER skip this game. .there would be a revolt. .I just know it!! This year we had the kids spider walk to the plates of worms buried in whipped topping.
Then, as usual. .they had to find AND eat the worms using only their mouths. You can see. .
It's a messy job. .one that not too many of them seem to mind!
And what's a party without PARTY food?? This year, I used the counters in my laundry room/back porch. .and set another long table up creating a U shaped area. This seemed to allow better flow through the kitchen/dining room by taking the congestion to a different room.
Mummy dogs, chips and cheetos, BBQ smokies, spooky apple mouths, sausage, cheese and crackers, dirt dessert, cupcakes, witches wands, brownies, and witches brew were the hit of the party. .for the kids. .and the BIG kids!!

In looking through all the pictures taken from the afternoon. .I was just amazed. .and thrilled at how many smiles and cameras in action I saw in each photo!! That made my WHOLE day! I looked like all had a good time. .though probably still not as much fun as I did!!

I love holidays. .and I can't wait for the next holiday on the list! Last year I hosted a Thankful Thursday for each Thursday in November. .I think I will do that again this year. .but probably just one Thursday. .so be thinking of your answer!!

Wishing everyone a great week!! One with blue skies and NO tummy aches!


  1. You must have had half the town there. It sure looks like fun. I'm amazed at the variety of activities. Something for everyone.
    Hope all are on the mend and you're ready for the blast of winter coming.

  2. Darn, that looks like a lot of fun! I wish I had had a Mom like you (or had been a Mom like you, for that matter!) when I was little or my kids were little! A truly impressive-looking good time!

  3. Oh no!! Poor Devin! REALLY hoping it stops there for you!
    Looks like another great party! I should have come out. I really missed it!!

  4. Boy, do you ever know how to throw a party! That is a serious good time! I love your cockroach ice floats...gotta keep that one in mind for next year.

  5. Looks like we missed a really great time! Hopefully we will make it again next year. I love that your older boys are "too cool" to help with the little kids!

  6. Sardines? Wow--you're a meany--LOL!

    Honestly-you make this all look like it's so easy. Must be nice having YOU in the neighborhood. You know who you are? The COOL mom. Sheesh. I'm jealous!

  7. Oh. my. goodness!! That was an awesome party you had going there! I can't believe all of the games and activities! That food layout makes me wish I was there!! All of these kids are going to remember these Halloween parties for the rest of their lives...and that is so cool! Wow, you have inspired me...maybe I will have an awesome party like this next year! I was actually not so Halloweeny this year...which is very, very surprising!

  8. We need to make it back for one of your parties again. We had a great time the year we got to participate. Hope Devin is feeling better.


  9. Wow! Best looking party ever! I must say the drink wit the bugs is the creepiest thing I ever saw! Looks like you all had a great time!
    So much fun for little kids!