Tuesday, September 30, 2014

21 Simple Things To Get You In The Mood For Halloween

by Megan S.

YOU GUYS! YOU GUYS!  IT'S FINALLY THE MOST WONDERFUL TIME OF THE YEAR!!!  Tomorrow is the very first day of October and that means Halloween is only 31 days away!!!

But there's no reason we have to wait until the end of the month to enjoy the holiday. Try doing just one of the simple things on the list every day and it'll feel like Halloween all month long.

1. Watch an old favorite

Spooky movies from the 80s and 90s were the absolute best.  They just don't make 'em like that anymore.  Yes.  I realize this makes me sound like an old fart.  I don't care.  Each one of these on our list is an absolute classic.

2. Make a quick and easy yet totally festive meal

The hardest thing about making this grilled cheese was positioning the leaf of parsley so it would align with the stem cutout on the bread.  I cut out the pumpkin shape using a shot glass and a paring knife, but if you want to get real fancy, you can use an actual pumpkin cookie cuter to achieve the shape.

Another family favorite to have around Halloween are mummy dogs.  Mmmm, thematically appropriate pigs in a blanket!

3. Plan your decorations

Half the fun of getting ready for a holiday is the planning.  Just what little goodies can I cook up this time around?  I haven't figured out this year's decorations yet, but this is what I did a few years ago.  You can achieve the same look with the printables I made and the creepy old high resolution photographs I collected.

4. Plan your costume

Again with the planning!   I'm already working on this year's costume for Lilly.  (Here she is last year as Sherlock.)  Getting the details just right always puts me in the holiday spirit.

5. Read my favorite poem

I often think of my favorite poem on hot Fall days here in San Francisco.  Rainer Maria Rilke's Herbsttag (or Autumn Day) expresses exactly how I feel in those uncomfortable hours. I don't have a favorite translation, so you get four to choose from.


Don't deny it. You know you're craving something pumpkin spice flavored right now.  Go ahead.  We won't judge.

7. Find books to give away for All Hallows Read in your "already read" pile

All Hallow's Read is the perfect excuse to whittle down your massive piles of books with the added benefit of sharing some of your favorite spooky books with friends.

8. Snuggle up with a scary movie

I'm pretty sure we've already established I'm not a fan of truly scary movies, but for those of you who are, we've got two awful good lists to choose from: seven classics and S4 favorites.

9. Decorate your pumpkin

We're of two minds here at Stellar Four.  Sara loves to carve hers (she's the artist behind the Night Vale pumpkin above) and I'm on the "I don't like get my arms all sticky when scooping out the guts" side of the argument.  No matter who you agree with, we've got loads of ideas for you.  Here's some from Sara:  Welcome to Night Vale and a collection.  And here are my no mess no fuss favorites from last year and two years before that.

10. Enjoy a creepy cocktail with friends

Huffington Post has a great collection of creepy cocktails from all over the internet.

11.  Walk down memory lane, leafing through old Halloween photos

Feel all sorts of warm fuzzies when you flip through photos of Halloweens past.  The one above is a pumpkin I carved way back in 2008.  (Just because I don't like carving them doesn't mean I never do them.)

12. Watch a cult classic for the umpteenth time

Enjoy some terrible thrills with a cult classic.

13.  Bust out the Halloween jewelry

I get so many compliments on this necklace from Hey Chickadee!  I can't wait to start wearing it again. 

14. Go to the library to check out some old creepy faves

by Sybil Ramakin
It's not a holiday if it doesn't involve a trip to the library, amirite?  OK.  So, maybe that's not really a thing, but it's still the perfect way to enjoy an Autumn afternoon.  Just avoid the librarians.

15. Binge watch a scary show

Whether you want to spend an evening watching Sarah Paulson in American Gothic or watching Sarah Paulson in American Horror Story, it will be hours well wasted.

16. Read a chapter of a spooky story every night before bed

This is Meghan's faaaaavorite book.  She reads a chapter every night before bed in October. Now she has our friend Jessie hooked too.  My library doesn't have a copy anymore, so I've taken the plunge and ordered it from Amazon.

17. Nosh on a healthy (and gross) snack

Canned lychees stuffed with blueberries and strawberry preserves are deeeelicious and also look like bloody eyeballs.

18. Get a Halloween manicure

HALLOWEEN AT YOUR FINGERTIPS!  How adorable is that?

19.  Share scary stories with friends

While you're enjoying that creepy cocktail with friends, try outdoing each other, sharing the scariest stories you can.

20. Have a dance party with Halloween music

I love letting loose, dancing and singing along to music, especially if no one's around to witness it.  Have your very own personal dance party while doing chores around the house.  You can find some of my favorite spooky oldies at the bottom of this post.


You didn't think I'd forget about the candy did you?  It's an integral part of the holiday.  Just ask Kathy.

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