Halloween Fear Challenge–Food Edition

Are you staying home for Halloween? Are you looking for fun ways to celebrate with your family? How about hosting a Halloween fear challenge night? Trying new foods is always a fun family activity, right?

Grocery List Ideas

Ask yourself, what food items would be a challenge for your family? Do you need some assistance? Check out the following ideas.

  • Edible Insects: There is a wide selection of edible insects available at your local specialty shop or online.
    Original Worm Snack. Believe it or not, these come in different flavors.

    Like the Larvets, these Crick-eets are available in different flavors; Bacon & Cheese, Salt & Vinegar, and Sour Cream & Onion.
  • Bugs in a Sucker: A sucker is a perfect chance to eat a little sweet before getting down to the bug.

    There are suckers available with scorpions, crickets, ants, worms, and more. They come in a wide variety of flavors.
  • Chocolate Covered Bugs: Other bugs come covered in chocolate. For many, eating chocolate-covered larvae is easier.
  • Pickled Eggs: Pickled eggs are an acquired taste. Many find the soft squishy pickled eggs a challenge to eat.
  • Rattlesnake: For many, Eating a snake is definitely a challenge. But a rattlesnake can add an extra element of fear.
  • Gummy Bugs: If you have younger children who may want to join the fun but will not try other real insects, purchase gummy bugs. Eating a gummy worm or other insects may be a challenge to younger children.
  • Fruit or Vegetable: The produce section is another place to look for food challenge options. If your family has never tried a turnip, radish, leek, pomegranate, avocado, or dragon fruit, add these to your food fear challenge night. The fruits and vegetables are a fun addition.

Your Halloween Food Challenge Night

Keep in mind, there is no right or wrong way to set up for your Halloween food challenge night.

  • Use Halloween themed plates or trays to spread out your food selection.
  • Provide plenty of water to wash down the food choices.
  • Do not force anyone to try a choice.
  • Film the experience to use on YouTube or Instagram.
  • Take pictures. Use the photos to make a scrapbook later.
  • Have fun. Who knows, maybe you can cross items to try off your bucket list.

What food do you consider a fear challenge?

 

Simple Halloween Ghost Cookies

Halloween (or any holiday) is an excellent time to start new traditions. Whether you are staying close to home due to the pandemic or avoiding the cold weather, making simple Halloween ghost cookies is a great way to celebrate. Anyways, who doesn’t like warm, gooey marshmallow cookies?

Grocery List

  • Cookie dough or the ingredients to your favorite cookie recipe.
  • Marshmallow shaped ghosts
  • Halloween sprinkles (optional)

Instructions

  • Preheat oven.
  • Bake cookies as directed.
  • Remove at the proper time.
  • Place the ghost marshmallows and sprinkles on to the warm cookies. The marshmallow begins to melt from the heat.
  • Serve warm.
  • Enjoy the extra sweet, gooey goodness of simple Halloween ghost cookies.

These simple but tasty Halloween ghost cookies are a perfect snack for family movie night.

Halloween Crafts: Pumpkin Magnets

Are you staying close to home for Halloween? How about doing some Halloween-themed crafts. Pumpkin magnets are an open-ended craft project. There is no right or wrong way to do the pumpkin magnets. The possibilities are endless.

List of Materials

  • Wooden Circles

    Purchased these at Wal-Mart.
  • Glue
  • Orange, Green, and Black Paint (or any other colors you want to use)
  • Paint Brushes
  • Googly Eyes
  • Pipe Cleaners
  • Pom Poms
  • Glitter
  • Magnets

    Purchased these from Amazon. Please note: “As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.”

Instructions for Pumpkin Magnets

  1. Cover work area with newspaper.
  2. Paint circles your desired color.
  3. Allow your circle to completely dry.
  4. Add embellishments or paint your pumpkin’s face.
  5. Allow your pumpkin to completely dry.
  6.  Flip your pumpkin over to glue on the magnet.
  7. Allow your pumpkin to completely dry again.
  8. Display your final pumpkin craft.

October: Family History Month

Did you know all of October is Family History Month? As the weather turns colder, finding indoor activities is essential. Chilly autumn days are excellent for learning about your family history. Asking questions is one of the best ways to learn about your family. Visit or call your parents, grandparents, great grandparents, or other elder family members. Remember either record or have a pen and paper ready to take lots of notes.

Do you need help with the type of questions to ask? Go beyond simple dates and locations. Ask about family stories too. Check out the following areas for inspiration for finding out about your family.

Marriage

  • How did you meet?
  • How did Grandpa (or other elder relatives) purpose?
  • What was your maiden name?
  • Do you know how your parents or grandparents first met?
  • What was your mother’s maiden name for both sides of your family?
  • Is there any story surrounding your proposal?
  • What was your wedding day like?
  • Did you have a big wedding?
  • Where did you get married?

Family

  • How many brothers and sisters did, or do you have?
  • Tell me about them.
  • How many aunts and uncles?
  • If you had lots of cousins, did you stay in touch with them?
  • Did you have family reunions?
  • What was your family gathers like?

Childhood

  • What is your favorite childhood memory?
  • Describe an average day from your childhood.
  • Where were you born?
  • Where did you grow up?
  • Did you move around a lot or stay in one location?
  • Do you know where your parents grew up?

School

  • Where did you attend grade school? Junior high? High school?
  • Did you like school?
  • Did you attend college, vocational, or a trade school?
  • What was your favorite subject in school?

Religion

  • What was your religious upbringing?
  • Did you go to church regularly?
  • Where did you go to church?

Occupations

  • What was your first job?
  • Do you remember how much you made an hour?
  • How many different jobs did you have over the years?
  • What was your favorite one?
  • What was your parents’ occupation?

Military

  • Did you serve in the military?
  • What branch?
  • How long did you serve?
  • Were you ever in a war zone or other conflict?
  • Where did you attend boot camp?
  • Were you drafted?
  • Do you know any other family members who served in the military?
  • Describe a typical day for you in the military.

The more questions you ask, the better understanding you will have of your family history. Enjoy your time with older relatives. Their knowledge will be lost once they are gone.

National Collecting Rocks Day

Did you today, September 16th, is National Collecting Rocks Day? Are you wondering how to celebrate? Well, simply go outdoors and collect rocks. Rock collecting is an easy pastime to start with your family. Children love to collect. Who knows, go on outings to collect rocks may lead to a lifetime love of geology.

Why Collect Rocks?

Collecting rocks is a hands-on learning experience. Unplug from your devices and spend an afternoon outdoors. Turn rock collecting into an adventure for your family. Rock collecting has many benefits, including:

  • Building vocabulary
  • Increasing fine motor skills by searching and picking up rocks
  • Expands imagination
  • Builds large motor skills by walking to find the rocks.
  • Promotes family togetherness
  • Provides a foundation for further learning

Plus, collecting rocks is fun.

Ideas for Your Rock Collection

How many rocks did you find? Are you wondering what to do with your collected rocks? Check out the following ideas.

  • Identify: Rocks fall into three main categories, sedimentary, metamorphic, and igneous. Identifying rocks is a great learning experience.
  • Display: Using old egg cartons or other throw-away plastic containers, display your rocks. Egg cartons are wonderful to separate and label your latest rock finds. Or invest in a larger container to continuously fill to show your rocks.
  • Paint: Paint and hide larger rocks around your community.
  • Crafts: Smaller rocks or stones are great for crafting. Arrange your rocks into animal shapes or other patterns. Glue the rocks to a board to display on the wall.
  • Make Jewelry: With the right type of crafting material, you can turn rocks into necklaces and bracelets.
  • Polish: Invest in a rock tumbler to polish and shine your finds.

Fall is an excellent time to go rock collecting with your family. But be warned, once started collecting rocks is addicting. You may want to check pockets before doing the wash. Finding a hand full of rocks in each pocket is an expected outcome for starting rock collecting.

Going Back to Hogwarts

Harry Potter fans worldwide celebrate September 1st as the day to return to Hogwarts. Since social distancing and restrictions are still in effect for many areas, finding small ways to celebrate is essential. Are you wondering how to celebrate going back to Hogwarts? Check out the following ideas for inspiration.

Celebrating Going Back to Hogwarts

“Whether you come back by page or by the big screen,

Hogwarts will always be there to welcome you home.”

J.K. Rowling

Return to Hogwarts in your own way by participating in different family-friendly activities.

  • Watch the Movies: Make some popcorn, order pizza, and pick your favorite Harry Potter movie to watch. Choosing a favorite may be difficult; you can always binge-watch the entire series over the next couple of days.
  • Re-Read the Series: Curl up under your favorite blanket and spend time re-reading the series. Or read the series together as a family.
  • Listen to the Audio Versions: Do you have other work to do? Turn on the audio version of the series.
  • Make Wizarding World Themed Food: In J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Remus Lupin stated, “Eat, you’ll feel better.” Of course, this was after an encounter with a Dementor. But the sentiment still holds up for returning to Hogwarts. Make chocolate frogs, coins, or a complete meal based on the food from the Hogwarts’ feast. Don’t forget the cake.
  • Have a Craft Day: Pull out your crafting supply stash and make Wizarding World themed crafts.
    Melt pony beads on old pizza pans to create large Harry Potter inspired sun catchers.

    There are numerous easy crafts to make, including owls, plaster frogs, coins, ornaments, and more. Of course, you will need your own wand.

  • Participate in Online Events: With all the restrictions in place due to the pandemic, many sites, including the Wizarding World, are hosting online events.
  • Listen to a Podcast: Find a new or re-listen to Harry Potter-themed podcasts.
  • Play Games: From video games to board games, play Wizarding World and Harry Potter themed games.

Do you want to know the best way to celebrate going back to Hogwarts? Have fun. Enjoy time with your family. Or curl up with your dog and dive back into the Wizarding World by reading the very first Harry Potter book.

Family Fun Month: Go for a Bike Ride

Are you still looking for summer activities to celebrate Family Fun Month? How about going for a bike ride? Going for a long bike ride with your family is a great way to get outdoors while maintaining social distancing.

Before you go, do a safety check. Carefully inspect all aspects of your family’s bikes, helmets, baskets, bike seats for young children, and all other features. A well-maintained bicycle is vital for your family’s safety.

Benefits of Bike Riding With Your Family

Riding bikes is an excellent form of physical exercise for you and your family. When you ride a bike, you burn calories, gain strength and balance. Along with improving your overall fitness, bike riding has other benefits for you and your family.

  • Quality Time: Bicycling is an excellent family activity for quality time. When you do activities as a family, you create a long-lasting bond.
  • Learning Experience: Bike riding as a family is a learning experience. As parents or guardians, you have the opportunity to teach your children the proper rules of cycling. Children learn proper hand signals, biking etiquette, proper helmet use, and other safety rules.
  • Unplug: Going for a bike ride gets everyone away from technological devices. Unplugging for an afternoon or day reduces stress and anxiety. Social media is a great tool. But often, all the information can be overwhelming. Being outdoors is essential to your health.
  • Socialization: Bike riding is a social activity. Encouraging conversation builds vocabulary and social skills. Children have the opportunity to bond with other young bike riders.
  • Eco-Friendly: Bike riding is good for the environment. As responsible caregivers, you have the opportunity to teach your children eco-friendly activities.
  • Creates Memories:  Engaging in family activities create lasting memories. Depending on the age of your children, stopping often may be needed. Resting in between cycling is a great way to view the world around you.

When was the last time you and your family went for a bike ride? The time is right to dust off the bikes and hit the road.

 

 

Family Fun Month: Hiking

Exploring the outdoors is a wholesome activity for the entire family (including the dog) to enjoy. Hiking provides physical exercise, reduces stress, and boosts creativity.

Find the Right Trail

Before heading out, do your research. Find the right hiking trail for you and your family to safely enjoy. Trails generally run from easy to extremely difficult with numerous obstacles. Finding the best one for your family requires research. If you are uncertain about where to start, set out on an easy trail than work your way through the rest.

What to Pack

If you are just beginning, day trips are the best. Heading out on the trail for a day gives your family a chance to familiarize themselves with the trails and the equipment.

Do you need ideas for the basics for backpacking essentials for day trips?

  • Backpack: Use a high-quality backpack to protect your basic hiking necessities. Even younger children can carry a lightweight backpack.
  • Water: Staying hydrated is critical when hiking.
  • Food: Pack plenty of food to get you through your hiking trip. Small children may require frequent stops with extra snacks. Pack to meet each family members’ needs.
  • First Aid: Bringing a first aid kit is essential for handling minor scrapes and cuts on the trail.
  • Compass: Do not always rely on your cell phone. If your battery goes dead, you may need an alternative navigation device.
  • Hand Sanitizer: Use to clean your hands before eating.
  • Mask: Once you are on the open trail away from people, you will not need a mask. However, certain areas of the park may require a face covering. Be respectful of others. Pack a mask to follow any restrictions.
  • Extra Socks and Hiking Shoes: If you accidentally get your feet wet, having additional foot attire is a priority, especially with children. You want to make hiking a positive experience.

Before You Hit the Trail

Before heading to your destination, check the weather forecast. Dress in weather-appropriate clothing. Remember, clothing layers are the best option for being outdoors. If you are uncertain what to wear, add an extra layer. If the weather is too warm, a sweatshirt is easy to remove.

Have Fun

Hiking is not a race to get through the trails as fast as possible. Take your time with your family. Pause to view numerous scenic areas or enjoy nature.

Ask your children open-ended questions or make up stories. Being outdoors increases creativity. Encourage conversation among your family about the experience. Bring your camera or use your cell phone to take lots of photos to create a memory book. Wildlife and nature discoveries can lead to a lifetime love of the outdoors.

 

Family Fun Month: Camping

Celebrate Family Fun Month by getting outdoors and going camping. View the stars while sitting around a cozy campfire. Even with the current health crisis, you and your family can enjoy camping.

Tips for Camping During the Current Health Crisis

With planning and social distancing, camping is a low-risk activity for you and your family. Plus many campsite allow pets, you can bring your favorite four-legged companion along to enjoy the fun.

Plan Your Trip

Before heading out, check your state or local park guidelines for camping during a pandemic. If you are heading to a campground, register ahead of time to secure your camping space. When picking your area, try to get a campsite further away from others.

Over Pack

Generally, road trips mean a lot of stops, fast food, and more. But due to the pandemic, purchase as much as possible before going to the campground. Minimize the number of stops to and from the camping area.

Along with food, drinks, a tent, and other necessary camping equipment, consider the following.

  • Hand Sanitizer: Pack ample amounts of hand sanitizer and wipes. If you are not near the public restrooms or outdoor facet areas to wash your hands, hand sanitizer is an excellent alternative.
  • Masks: Even though you are outdoors, specific areas inside the campground may require a mask. Be respectful. Follow the guidelines.
  • First Aid Kit: Bring your own fully stocked first aid kit to handle minor cuts and scraps. Do not forget to pack extra band-aids, anti-itch medication, and other supplies. A well-packed first aid kit allows you to treat your minor ailments right at your campsite.
  • Trash Container: Create a designated area for your trash. Put all your trash into a bag or other container. Empty your trash in the proper area. Never leave your trash behind.

Have Fun

Now the packing and the basics are out of the way—time to have fun. Yes, you will still need to practice social distancing with others outside your family. But enjoy your time together.

  • Swim
  • Go paddleboarding or kayaking
  • Walk the designated trails
  • Make S’mores
  • Tell stories around the campfire
  • Stargaze
  • Photograph nature

Or simply relax and enjoy the great outdoors while sitting around a campfire.

Family Fun Month: Sunday Dinners

With school fast approaching, either virtual or in-session, daily homework, work, and other commitments will quickly fill your schedule. Did you know August is Family Fun Month? Celebrating the small moments is essential for you and your family. One way to celebrate Family Fun Month is hosting Sunday dinners.

Hosting Sunday Dinners

Keep in mind, when you start planning, there is no right or wrong way to host a Sunday dinner for Family Fun Month. If you need a little inspiration, check out the following ideas.

  • Traditional Meal: Cook a full course meal. For example, turkey or ham with baked potatoes, vegetables, a side salad, and apple pie is a great traditional dinner.
  • BBQ: With the weather being beautiful, starting up the barbecue grill is a wonderful way to celebrate Family Fun Month.
  • Picnic: Make sandwiches, snacks, and other treats and go on a picnic. Get outdoors. Numerous state and local parks have picnic areas. Or pack a blanket, sit on the ground, and enjoy your meal under the open sky.
  • Try Something New: Use Sunday dinners as a way to explore new cultures. Research recipes from different cultures around the world. Pinterest is a great resource. Try something new. Who knows, the new recipe may quickly turn into a family favorite.
  • Cook Together: Even a simple meal can turn into a learning experience. Cook together as a family. Share stories and enjoy them.
  • Order Take Out: If you don’t feel like cooking, order take out. Yes, when you are all together, pizza counts as a family meal.

Family Fun Month is a great time to celebrate with Sunday dinners. Enjoy your time with your family. Small celebrations quickly turn into long-lasting memories for you and your family.