Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Hallowe'en plans and DIY

Hallowe’en is coming and it is one of my favourite times of the year. Fall has such a distinct atmosphere that I love. The crisp air, the beautiful leaves and colours, and the pumpkins. As usual, I’m flooded with inspiration for Hallowe’en; costumes, decorations, carvings, and so on. It happens every year, and every year I usually can’t get to half of what I would like to because other than building a house, I have very little DIY experience. But kids are money pits, so to save money this year I’m trying to make a lot stuff that I might have once bought. It seems to succeed at DIY, you need to be able to plan ahead and be resourceful. Both are characteristics I have, so might as well put them to good, money-saving use!

The first is to get an early start. Back in September I decided what I would do for the house. My big plan for the house is to have all the windows decorated with creepy silhouettes. During my lunch hours I’ve been scouring the internet, getting ideas of what would look fun and a little scary. Being rather un-artistic when it comes to drawing, I’ve relied on others to think of things / draw things for me, and I’m making vain attempts to trace them onto water-heater boxes my Dad has brought home for me from his latest job site (yay free resources!). Victor has been helping with the tracing, though I think I may have introduced him to crayons a little early, as many windows, the coffee table, the dryer door, and occasionally the floor have all been treated with his artwork as a result. And sometimes he likes to chew on them. I found my tissue paper at the dollar store and got it last weekend – nothing will be sold out for my great Hallowe’en dreams as a  result of waiting till the last minute.

Other than pumpkins, the other scare I want to give my trick-or-treaters is creepy eyes in the dark woods. My driveway is surrounded by woods on both side and I came across a really neat idea. You take toilet-paper rolls, cut out eyes in them, and insert glow sticks. Hide them in the trees and it will look like creepy eyes are watching them in the dark. Again, dollar store has me covered – you can buy 10 mini-glow sticks, the perfect size, for $2.

The one thing I'm not doing this year due to time and energy is candy apples. Usually I give them out, but this year I just won't have the energy while also trying to keep Victor entertained. So instead I'm giving out full bars. I remember when full bars used to be a huge thing. I know the whole free candy part of Hallowe'en isn't what it used to be as kids get candy all the time now, but I still want to make it worth while and fun. It's easy for me to do, as we only get about 25-40 kids, and have a cost-co membership. But even if we didn't, the dollar store has some full bars for 50 cents each. I'm all about the extra-special element. 

And finally, we need costumes. I've struggled over what to dress Victor in, as I plan to take him around to a few houses just to try it out (plus, he's always wondering onto the neighbour's yards anyway). It will also be the last year I get to decide what he wants to wear. I found a dragon costume at Salvation Army, but alas it has a hood for the dragon head and Victor won't keep that on. So I came across a Musketeer costume. Basically it's blue fabric with a white lining and white French cross in the centre. Add to it a dollar-store hat with the side glued up, and a big feather, as we have a costume that will fit over his clothes and he'll probably keep on. And it's cool and interesting! My costume will be simpler, but I plan to make the shirt that has both mine and baby's skeleton. The really big cost in both of these costumes and all my other plans will be time, as the materials I bought at Salvation Army or the dollar store for a few dollars. But with my hour and a half lunch break, I should be able to make it work and all come together for October 31st! 

Happy Hallowe'en, and I'll let you know how it all turns out!

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