How to Plan Ahead to Decorate Your Home for Halloween
Don't forget your Scary Sound CD to set the Mood!
Harvest time Brings Thoughts of the next Holiday in line this year.
Harvest brings celebrations, Halloween and Thanksgiving
As I drove down the winding roads the through the canyons and backways of Santa Clarita, CA, I passed several farms with horses, cows and goats and pastures, around the bend where my favorite Fruit and Vegetables Stands display their fresh produce, I see the Pumpkin Patches are being harvested already. It was only last week I was pointing out to my girls the huge orange "fruits" growing amist giant shapely leaves along the ground in acres and acres of flat lands below the mountain slopes. Like majic the small plants in rows and rows along the hillsides have grown up into giant Sunflowers with their yellow heads topping the six or seven foot plants. Our children roamed through the rows and rows of sunflowers for many years as they grew up looking at the unique scarecrows and displays the various childrens' groups and schools in our areas set up for competitions. This always set the stage for family comparisons as to whether or not their favorites achieved the First Prize Blue Ribbons, or runners-up or if a display was too gross or very funny....
With the appearance of fresh pumpkins, gourds, squash and apples, the reminder that autumn is just around the corner and days are becoming shorter and the nights sky appears earlier and earlier. With these signs comes memories of years past when the entire neighborhood comes out into the darkness to visit us by the firepits and drinking Hot Apple Cider and some dads "bring their own beverages" as the parents escort their children through the neighborhoods to collect candies and treats while dressed in imaginative and brightly colored costumes. I am already smelling the scent of burning wood, hearing the crunching leaves under the running feet of children everywhere and thinking about how to decorate for the holiday next in line this year, Halloween!
Halloween Tricks for Seasonal Royalty
- Halloween Tricks for Seasonal Royalty
Early this season, several of my very loyal readers began to ask questions with regard to if I had any new "secrets" for décor and places to go for great deals and or exciting Halloween costumes! I decided to research for you and help you save time..
Recipes for Halloween Fun!
Scary Creature Halloween Pie
- two deep dish pie crusts, Marie Calendars ReadyMade
- 4 cups Black Raspberry pie filling, Substitute fresh or frozen berries*
- 1/2 Cup Granulated Sugar, Orange colored sugar
- 1 large egg white Beaten egg white, Substitute milk for eggs
- 1 cup ground pecans or pistachios, Substitute vanilla wafers for nuts
- Preheat Oven at 425F Lay first pie crust into large pie pan, crimp edges, add layer of nuts or "Nilla Wafers" in bottom of crust.
- Add pie filling, if using fresh berries mix first with 2/3 cups sugar and 3 tablespoons lemon juice, then add into pie crust. Save two large berries for creatures eyes.
- Cut top crust into wild creature form, using serrated edged knife, as shown in photo. Save small amount of pie crust dough for eyes. Put tentacles/body lattice first, add creature head on top, centered.
- Put two raspberries for creature eyes, then add pie crust dough over the eyes as heavy lids.
- Baked pastry dough as directed by package for fruit pie. Brush pie crust top with beaten egg whites, then sprinkle granulated sugar on top. Bake Approximately 30-40minutes, until lightly browned, cool 30 minutes before serving.
Halloween should be Fun for Everyone - Always Keep the Scariest Displays Above the Eye Level of the Little Children!
Bubbling Eyeball Soup and a Cauldron of Hot Apple Cider for the Parents! Keep the hot drinks and candle flames to the back of the table so kids won't get accide
Pets will come to your Halloween site with their families!
It's not too Early to start planning if you want the Best Display n your Area!
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Witches Groceries for making Potions and wicked brews!
You write down your ideas and Develop them into a Plan
When you start to map out your display area, think of the direction you want your "Trick or Treaters" to travel, should they end up at the front door, or the side of the garage, where do you want to give out the trick or treat candies, how do they rejoin their parents, do want the parents to stay with the smaller children or enjoy the scarier areas with the older kids?
Essentially you want to direct the "flow of traffic" by setting up tables, partitions or even bales of hay to create a walkway up to the place where the kids will be knocking on the door. In this Hub I will be explaining one of the areas I set up last year because it was one of the most successful I had ever created. Of coarse once you start doing this, the response is so enthusiastic, you tend to want to improve on it every year, so they always get better and better.
Halloween Décor can be as "Cute" or "Scary" as you choose it to be.
Shopping for Halloween Fun!
Start with an idea and Work it into a Plan!
Setting up your display area for Good and Safe Viewing!
So keeping in mind that the display area should be set up so it directs the flow of "traffic", I first map out the direction I want the guests and "Trick or Treaters" to walk around. In this set up I decided to have everyone walk up the driveway, see the displays and the little ones' went to see the "Ghost Duck" while the older kids visited the scarier places. Parents had to hold the hand of the smaller children as they climbed a small ladder to look inside the back of our pick- up truck parked on the far side of the driveway. The "Ghost Duck" was our pet duck, DAISEYDUCK, whom you have probably seen in pictures from my past Hubs on Environment and secret gardens and Fairy Gardens. She is a Pekin Duck and is all white so when we shine Black Lights on her and her display, she lights up like a ghost, all the kids like to pet her and she is swimming in a small kiddie pool in the truck bed so she happlily quacks through all the attention. It was the least work and the greatest attraction of the night! We themed the display as a deserted Luau, with a Luau shed with tropical flowers and grass skirts and leis, and of coarse DaisyDuck swimming amist it all!
Put the Scary Stuff out of the "Line of Sight" from the smaller kids!
Small children enjoy the "Cuter" side of the Halloween celebration
Setting up your Horror displays for Safe Viewing and Excitement!
While the little ones are ooohing and ahhhing over Daisy duck, the older kids have finished with looking at the various grotesque displays and had their Hot Apple Cider from the Witches' Kettle, which is set into a huge glass bowl filled with water and dry ice to make it bubble bubble and trouble, with fog! They then have no choice but to walk up the front path to the front yard and the sidewalk that leads to the front porch, to knock on the front door for their Treats.
To keep everyone from wandering through the display into other areas I line up tables along the front of the garage to block the entrance. I put blocks of wood some heightened higher with several bricks to raise areas for certain displays on the tables. These displays will be up and out of sight of the smaller children who don't need to be frightened by the gory stuff that delights the older kids and teens! I set up the raised areas for multi-dimensional exhibits which allows for more display areas, and higher interest.
Once I have the tables, wood blocks and bricks or cinder blocks in place, I cover everything with black bed-sheets, actually you can use any colors you have. I place strings of white lights on the sheets, (Christmas lights are great for this!), and then cover the lights with Halloween table cloths. I chose clear, transparent table cloths that I found at the costume store to show off the lights more dramatically. The way the bricks and risen areas are set prevent any heat buildup from the lights so it is fire safe. Next I place a couple of wrought iron shelves onto the tables which creates drama and more areas to set up ghastly displays.
Halloween Features bring back the neighborhood, year after year!
On the inside table I have a powercord Surge Protector to organize the electrical cords and I taped it securely to a table leg so no one will get caught up in it and bring down my slow cooker filled with Hot Spiced Apple Cider. This is a draw throughout the neighborhood which gets passed around by word of mouth and through-out the night neighbors with their own displays find their way to our yard to get a taste of the cider and express their admiration.
Be sure to drape the tablecloths down the front to hide cords and supplies and keep the tablecloth up in the back to prevent tripping and allow easy access to boxes of spice mix, cider and paper cups, etc., stored under the tables, also keep lots of extra bags of candies for the droves of trick or treaters as the word spreads down the streets about your yard!
One display had a large pot set in a huge glass bowl with water, colored with food coloring and dry ice for smoky mystery and gummy eyeballs floating wildly about! The Hot spiced apple cider was inside a Crock Pot decorated to look like a Witches Cauldron.
I replaced most of my light bulbs in lamps, outdoor spotlighting and lamps with black lights, stategically placing bright white lights in areas where it showed through the fog along each end of the pathway.
On the first table I decorated with the height of little children in mind so they can see the cute décor but not be frightened by the more wretched gore. The pictures display some ideas like the puppy and piggy pumpkins and "stuffed animal" faced ghosts and goblins.
On the walking pathway to the frontyard were mirrors with scary transparent ghosts that looked like they were staring at you from inside dsthe mirrors. The foggers were timed to go off sporatically and catch the kids by surprise as they walked into the darker area of the yard. There was a hugh green Frankenstein hung up on the front porch and spookie eyes and mouths with fangs in the bushes that lit up with a motion sensor as they walked past. One set up was a motion activated voice that made various halloweeny laughs of an evil sort of mad professor laugh. The bushes had orange strings of lights and the front porch was lit in Black Lights, there were scary faces peeking from all the windows and to backdrop areas I hung old costumes and capes from years past, and a large witches hats hung like one would hang any hat no being used. The entire yard had strings of spider webs strung around and as the night passes it got stretched out more and more looking more realistic. Rubber rats were placed on the sidewalk for the Jr. High girls to scream delightedly as they love to do when they stepped on them and my husband couldn't resist putting a wooden rattlesnake near the door to dare the faint-hearted to reach over and knock.
Use your imagination, but watch your budget, you can pick u all kinds of Halloween décor after the holiday on sale for next year, last winter we got fog machines that sell for $50. each for $7.00 and all kinds of scary masks made of rubber for $5.00 each, and all you have to do is put them on a ball or hairdresser's manniquin heads and set them on the table for outrageous displays...
Remember to add to the scary ambiance set up a CD playing scary sounds, creaky doors, wicked laughs, screams and chains etc.
We have a TV and couches set up in our garage so we played scary horror movies from long ago on the tv and had scarecrows and monsters sitting on the couches.
Setting up lawn chairs around a fire-pit can attract neighbors to sit a moment and talk with each other and you while sipping on some hot cider or hot chocolate with mini-marshmallows!
This year I plan to take more pictures, I really wish I had the ones of Daisy Duck glowing in the dark, so check back in a few weeks for more Halloween Ideas and FUN!