Post-Halloween Party Idea

I know this blog is not typically a gathering place for tips and party ideas, but occasionally I have a stroke of genius, so I thought I’d share. I’ve had this idea for years, and I’m finally trying it out this Halloween. I think it’s a great way to gather friends together, whether your own or your kids’, and just have a little fun.

And of course you could just do these activities with your own family.  That counts as a party too, right?

Here’s the invitation template and if you’d like, you can download it as a .pdf file by clicking here:

The party concept is really simple. Every guest brings a small baggie full of leftover Halloween candy. Stock up on some big buckets of vanilla ice cream, set up a blender bar, and let everyone make Blizzard-style milkshakes out of the leftover candy of their choice. Then play a few candy-bar games together (There’s a list of links explaining them below.), and just laugh and enjoy the company.

The Candy Bar Game with Gloves, Utensils, and Dice: This blogger plays by rolling for doubles. In my family, we always played with one die and switched turns whenever anyone rolled a six, always announced by everyone yelling “SIX!!!”

The Brown Bag Candy Bar Game: In my family, we played it this way, except that you could steal candy bars in any round, not just the last three rounds.  That way, we all tried to be so discreet when we chose a candy bar so that no one would see what we picked and then steal it.

Candy Bar Pass and Swap Game: In this game, each roll of the dice requires a different kind of candy swap or transfer. It would be fun to put a few duds in the mix (like black licorice or raisins that would be like the “Old Maid” everyone wants to get rid of).

Candy Bar Memory Game: Make up code names for the candy on cards and whoever makes the match, wins the candy.

Wrapped Candy Bar Challenge This is similar to the gloves, utensils and dice game above, but with some interesting variations to make it tricky to get to the candy.

So there you have it.  Pinterest, eat your heart out. 🙂


Real life is scarier than Halloween.

So here are the undoubtedly anticipated pictures of my adorable children and their Halloween antics.


Despite the fact that Natalie wanted to be carried through most of the trick-or-treating trek, and that Clark had the leftover flu so he trick-or-treated in isolation with Matt instead of joining our group of friends, most of the night went off without a hitch.

At the suggestion of a friend, we implemented the “Great Pumpkin” this year.

The Great Pumpkin PatchThe kids put half of their candy in a bowl and left it out on the deck for the Great Pumpkin, who takes it away and leaves them a toy while they sleep.  I know you’re a smart bunch and probably don’t need a lot of clarification on this, but the Great Pumpkin is really the new name for my rear end after I finish eating all their candy.

So, on to the really scary stuff.

Grant got his card flipped at school.  There is a classroom management chart system where each child’s name has a plastic pocket next to it with green, yellow, and red laminated cards in it.  If you stay on green all day for good behavior, you pick up a little ticket at the end of the day for a weekly class lottery, most likely for some treasured prize like a glittery pencil.  Getting your card flipped to yellow indicates a warning, and a red card basically means that next week you and your family will be featured on Supernanny.  Well, let me remind you that Grant is an oldest child and obsessive rule keeper, enforcer, and pleaser.  Every day he reports to me that he stayed on green all day and he is quite proud of his consistent model behavior.  Yesterday, his card got flipped.  He forgot his science homework on the kitchen table, so he got a warning for his obvious academic mediocrity.  (I really don’t care about the warning, I think it’s good for him because I reminded him several times to put all his things in his backpack but he was just putzing around.)  However, if you are a first grader with a personality like Grant’s, this is the worst possible thing that could happen in your life.  It’s like he had to come home from school, look me in the eye, and confess that he’d become a serial killer and would now spend the rest of his life in prison.  Anyway, needless to say, Grant’s hopes and dreams have all been crushed and he and I may need counseling to get past this great tragedy.

On to Clark’s scary news.  He had the flu (He’s #4 out of the five of us, and Matt went down last night).  You’ve heard of “Return of the Swamp Monster?” Well, that’s the new subtitle for Clark’s nose, and a new sequel comes out about every 3-5 minutes.  We’re now on Return of the Swamp Monster LXXVIII (I think I forgot how roman numerals work.  Somebody flip my card.)  Eye hath not seen nor can mind comprehend the copious collection of green goopy slime that comes out of Clark’s nose.  Even with excessive tissue use and cleaning there is still a crusty residue at all times.  It’s truly amazing.  Think this, but on his face always:flubber

Now, Natalie’s scary story may have left her scarred for life.  I’m not kidding.  Last night I took the boys to their swimming lessons.  Natalie held my hand and we walked along the side of the pool to where I put our things down and sat on the bench to help the boys undress down to their swim trunks.  About 15 seconds later, I looked up and I could not see Natalie anywhere.  My mom heart sank and I panicked a little.  I stood up and spun around in circles looking for her.  “Where’s Natalie?  Grant, where did she go?”  I was scanning pool, hot tubs, spas all within feet of me and freaking out that she had literally just disappeared.  I started frantically asking the people around me, “Did you see my little girl?  I lost her.  She’s gone.  She was just right here.”  At that point I turned around and saw her walking up to the glass door a few feet away, making her exit from the Men’s. Locker. Room.  She put her little hands on the glass like “Get me out of here,” and I ran over, opened the door and scooped her up.  I hugged her tight, and she buried her little face in my shoulder and squeezed my neck.  For a long time.  I kept trying to talk to her about what happened but she would NOT look at me and just hid her face in my chest.  Finally by bedtime, she was able to admit through weak nodding that she had seen naked boys and then turned around to try and find her mother.  Poor kid.  *I* would be scarred for life if I accidentally walked into the men’s locker room at the gym, and I’m a few ripe years beyond two.  Sigh.  Oh well, maybe this will delay her dating life.  In that case, I’ll let it go.

And Matt’s got the flu now.  I just took him his morning dose of Day-Quil in bed.

As for me, if the Thriller video were remade, being acted out entirely by dishes, that gives you an idea of what my kitchen looks like right now.  So I’m going to be brave, pull up my mom zombie pants and get to work.

Anything scary going on in your family right now?