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Posted by TP Toys on 27th October 2014
As it's half-term for most of the UK, there are undoubtedly a lot of children exacerbated by the fact that Halloween falls at the end of it.
All Hallow's Eve is a festival loved by children because they get to dress up, have free rein to scare their families and - best of all - go trick or treating in their local neighbourhood.
However, many of you may be planning home-based parties this October 31st, especially if you have younger kids whom you don't want roaming the streets in the dark. If this is the case, what can you do in terms of preparation to ensure everyone has a ghoulishly good time?
Here, we've got some top tips on food, drink and crafting that can all be done during half-term week and on the big day itself so that your party is one everyone remembers for years to come.
Halloween party food
There are plenty of great ideas for scary-looking food and most of it is really easy to make, meaning children can get involved with everything except the parts where a hot oven or sharp implements are needed.
Our favourite Halloween trick is to cut hot dog sausages in half lengthways and then place five of them on a sandwich with the ends sticking out. Push halved almonds into each one, cover liberally with tomato sauce and you've got severed finger sandwiches!
Slimy eyeballs in bog water are another favourite - and they're surprisingly edible, despite the name. Just make small balls of goat's cheese and roll them in dried herbs. Put them on a bed of green pesto and they're ready to serve up.
Other ideas include simple biscuits cut into spooky shapes, pickled onion or lychee 'eyeballs' in green jelly 'zombie brains', chocolate run truffles with chocolate Matchmakers or Mikado stuck in the sides to make 'spiders', and meringue 'ghosts' with chocolate button eyes.
Halloween party drinks
You'll obviously want some fun yet non-alcoholic drinks for a children's party and although many recipes cater for adults drinking cocktails, there are also lots of mocktails you can have fun mixing together.
Punchbowl has some good ones online, including blood punch made from cranberry juice, apple juice, grape juice, cola and frozen strawberries. It also has a recipe for a pumpkin smoothie, which is a fantastic way of getting some extra veg into a day that will no doubt be full of sweet treats. It's well worth checking this site out so you've got plenty to serve up on the night.
Fun Halloween crafts
There's no end to the scary Halloween decorations you can make at home and kids will have plenty of their own ideas too.
In case you're struggling for inspiration, how about pom-pom and pipe cleaner spiders, potato printing and paper moons with bat silhouettes fluttering past them?
Speaking of silhouettes, you can also pin paper to the wall and then sit in front of a light while your little ones draw yours - they can then have hilarious fun decorating your image up as a witch or a zombie. Mice drawn onto black sugar paper and then stuck onto the risers of your stairs will give guests a scare as they pop to the loo.
Skeletons on A4 paper made from pasta are another of our favourites, while papier mache hands should be very well-received by youngsters. Just blow up a rubber glove and use PVA glue and water to cover it with torn-up newspaper.
When it's hard, it can be painted in spooky colours to resemble a werewolf, vampire or zombie's hand - and then strategically placed to appear as though it's emerging from somewhere about the house!
These are just the tip of the iceberg in terms of ideas, but hopefully this has given you some good ideas with which to get started. Have a very happy Halloween.