Thursday, October 25, 2012

Scaring up Some Not-So-Scary Halloween Fun

by Kathy F.

There are all kinds of spooky decorations, stories, costumes and movies, but my kiddos are still a bit young to enjoy my new favorite Halloween-Night flick, Shaun of the Dead. The Nightmare Before Christmas? We're all over that from October through December. Here are some other craft, movie & book ideas for the younger set.

First, if you haven't tried Megan's Crystal Spiders yet, run to your craft store for supplies so you can make them this weekend. The spiders are our new favorite Halloween craft, and the kids have taken orders from their friends, so we have quite the crystal spider factory going on right now. They are easy and just way cool.

Tissue paper ghosts are another favorite at our house: easy, quick, and I pretty much have all of the components available at all times. Perfect for the recent rainy day when there was no way I was going to run out to the craft store.
You need: a box of tissues, string or yarn, a marker (and a willing ghost-crafter). That's it.

Step 1: take one tissue and roll it into a ball

Step 2: Drape another tissue over the ball.

Step 3: Tie a knot around the draped tissue just under the ball.

Step 4: Draw a ghostly face.
Hang them up around the house. Not recommended for outside.

This year I think I'm going to introduce them to The Corpse Bride. Coraline might have to wait a year. We've also been watching the Harry Potter movies. We've stopped at #3 for now, but with the werewolf and the Dementors, that one hits the right spooky notes.

The kids have also been watching Ruby Gloom on Netflix. The right amount of cute and dark.

For books, we have the annual reading (and re-reading) of The Five Little Pumpkins by Dan Yaccarino. We also discovered a Halloween-themed counting book - Haunted Party by Iza Trapani.

If your kids are older (or you're like me and still love the kid books), here are a couple of middle school recs. Sarwat Chadda's Ash Mistry series begins with The Savage Fortress. I love Chadda's gritty YA UF Billi SanGreal series, so I've been looking forward to Ash - a middle school series set around Indian mythology. There is sure to be a lot of action and demons too.
Also, Dead City by James Ponti looks promising. A girl whose mother was the most feared zombie hunter, and now she has to follow in those rather large footsteps. A zombie book for kids with a kick-butt female lead. I think we can all get behind that.

After all that, the good news is that they still go to bed early, so plenty of time for the Shaun re-watch.

Do you have any not-so-scary favorites?
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  1. Well, Hocus Pocus(1993) is obvious. And don't forget Casper(1995)!

    1. They might like Hocus Pocus. We might have to try it too. They aren't always happy with live action movies, with the notable exception being Star Wars & Harry Potter. Mostly they want cartoons.