12

A Despicable Halloween With The Doctor

Halloween teeth decoration

Soooo I had plans to make some Halloween foods today. But they all involved the oven and it was too hot for that (31C, about 88F) so I did what any good parent would do and took the kids to Mister Nice Guy’s Bake Shop. In other words, relied on others to do the baking for me:

Mr Nice Guy's Bake Shop HalloweenMr Nice Guy's Bake Shop Halloween

Then back home to decorate outside. These cobweb decorations are so old, they have… cobwebs. The big spider on the top has a remote control that we couldn’t find. I wanted to make it run down the driveway and scare kids:

Halloween house decorations

I decorated my front fence with those super scary apple teeth in the first pic. They’re so easy, you just slice up some apple, stick in some slivered almonds (or sunflower seeds, or pepitas) for teeth and then use some peanut butter and jam. I felt a bit dorky having these when the neighbours had decorations and stuff hanging up. The neighbours across the road had the spooky voice doorbell and all I had were cobwebby cobwebs and apple faces. But they were a hit! Everyone stopped and commented how clever I am. Truthfully, I had googled and found a number of websites with these apple teeth.

Okay so last year, DeeW just HAD to be a witch so I caved in and bought a witch costume that she wore for about two hours and that’s it. Arthur was the Emperor from Star Wars. Not the face though, just the cloak and scary voice. Anyway this year I was all about putting together costumes from second hand stores, with a budget of $10 per costume. So DeeW decided to be a Dalek. I had no idea how to go about that so I nearly cried with relief when she changed her mind and wanted to be an evil purple minion from Despicable Me. I bought the denim overalls from Savers for about $5 and made the badge by printing out a picture I found online, and sticking it on to a hairpin. She already had the purple top (and purple leggings but it ended up being too hot for them) and these are Arthur’s safety goggles. I did try and look around for crazy purple hair ideas but in the end I just teased it all up like 80s hair metal. I took this photo before I did her crazy hair. Her Halloween bag is from last year:

Despicable Me purple minion costume

Arthur doesn’t have a favourite Doctor, he likes them all (more the revived series) but I think Matt Smith made him laugh more (I’m more a Eccleston-Capaldi girl myself). Arthur never wears jeans so I had to buy this pair of for about $4 and the mens jacket was about $8. The bow tie (which is cool) was a present for his tenth birthday. At the last minute we realised Arthur didn’t have a bag or a bucket so we used the ‘TARDIS blue’ cooler bag. No sonic screwdriver, we do have a good pen that has a light thingy and looks like a sonic screwdriver but Arthur’s room is disgustingly messy and he couldn’t find it. He finally admitted his room should be a little more organised:

Doctor Who costume

I really like how Halloween is done in our neighbourhood. It’s completely opt-in: all residents get sent a notice and if you want to participate, you leave your front porch light on. As Halloween isn’t an Australian ‘thing’, I like that this is respectful towards those who don’t want to be part of it all. It goes for about an hour and a half, giving kids enough time to go around the four streets that participate. Last year was our first year and I have to admit the kids look so gorgeous. Witches were very popular again this year and can you believe I only saw ONE Queen Elsa?! There were lots of vampire girls and boys and a few parents dressed up. I squeezed my fat head in to DeeW’s unicorn cape but I’ve spared you any photos. It’s hard to take selfies when your circulation is being cut off.

And as quickly as it came around, Halloween is over for another year. Arthur and DeeW have a sickening amount of chocolate and now I’m mentally preparing myself for the “can I have a chocolate?” that I will hear every two minutes until New Years.

Did you celebrate today? Did you have any super spooky scary foods? Will I ever get around to making those pastry witch fingers???

6

Halloween Presents Veganopoulous, the Complete Amateur Who Comes Up a Winner

I hope my readers that celebrate Halloween had a fabulous one!  Or have a fabulous one, given the timezones and stuff.  Unfortunately Husband and I did not get invited to any Halloween sci fi themed parties this year so I miss out on my dream of the two of us heading out like this:

twikigary

This is the first year Arthur and DeeW took part in a neighbourhood trick or treating.  That may sound bizarre to my overseas readers, but Halloween is not really considered an Australian ‘thing’.  Sure, some families do it and the supermarkets stock Halloween stuff, but there are plennnty of doors that get knocked on where the residents have no idea what is going on and kids go away empty handed.  Kids that door knock here are often told “sorry, we don’t celebrate Halloween”.

In my neighbourhood (well, the surrounding four streets) a group of parents drop notes in all the letterboxes advising people that kids will be going around on Halloween and if you’d like to participate, leave your porch light on and perhaps have a decoration.  The children will not door knock when a house does not have a light on.  Although I admit to having been a bit uncomfy with it all (the trick or treating/general Halloween stuff considered more of a North American thing here, though I would have no problem participating if we were holidaying overseas), I saw that this year Arthur and DeeW really wanted to dress up and go along with their friends.  And we can’t exactly keep the curtains closed and insist the kids stay away from the windows for another year:

fitacover

Now as someone who has never participated in Halloween, ever, let me explain my thought processes:

– how many treats do I buy? (I thought I bought waaaay too much and was quite alarmed by it, but I was left with a handful of stuff at the end).

– do I give the treats out or do the kids choose?

– if I give them out, how many does each child get?  If they choose, do I set a limit?

– will anyone take the cheap chocolate coins?

– do I insist the little kids get first dibs on the Tiny Teddies?

– do I buy individually wrapped treats in case some kids are snotty and grubby? (the answer was YESSSSS).

Finding vegan stuff that wouldn’t have cost a fortune was close to impossible so in the end I went for the standard non-vegan treats.  I had considered making caramel popcorn and putting it in mini cardboard Chinese food containers but ran out of time to make a trial batch and then I couldn’t find the smaller containers.  I think I’ll do that next year as I want to give out vegan treats.  Next year I also hope to be more organised.  I might have popcorn in some of the containers and other vegan treats and the kids choose randomly from a table or something.

I usually have some kind of Halloweeny food or decorations in our house, just for us.  This year, as we were joining in the neighbourhood opt-in doorknocking, I made these… let’s face it, pissweak attempts at decorating the front of the house:

housedec4
housedec1

housedec2

housedec3

I made jelly for our dessert in oranges:

jellyweenoranges

I made some gingerbread folks using a Dreena Burton recipe, unfortunately I kinda forgot about them and took them out four minutes over time.  I wanted to give these to our lovely neighbours so I’ll have to make another batch and blog about it, because this was a really good recipe:

gingerbread1

That’s a My Little Pony next to a Super Mario Toad:

gingerbread2

My hat wearing readers will be pleased to know I received many compliments on my choice of head wear.  The secret to my success?  An Ikea hand puppet and bobby pins:

hat

DeeW was a witch and Arthur was the Emperor from Star Wars. Witches were a very popular theme.  I saw lots of little ghoulish characters, scary masks, some teenagers who just wore black (that’s not a costume in my books!) but my favourite costume of the night belonged to a girl who looked around 14 who was Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz complete with sparkly red shoes.  Husband took the kids out and said there was a man dressed as Darth Maul (Arthur thought that was way cool) and another guy in a pumpkin suit.

The highlight was when a group of eight kids said mine was the best house EVER (as in, quote, “oh my Gorrrrrrrrrd this is the best house evahhh!”) because apparently I had the best selection of treats and I let them take three things each.  I demanded they all show me a double thumbs up as proof.  Then when they went around the block and I saw them on the other side of the street, they yelled out to me and gave me two thumbs up AGAIN.  I am SO GOOD at doing Halloween.

And that was our Halloween.  The kids declared it one of the best days ever and I’m looking forward to scrubbing their teeth for the next few weeks 😉