Thursday, October 6, 2016

Halloween Trick-or-Treat Ideas

Image found here.

Budget Ideas:

Contrary to what you might think, Dollar Tree might not be the best option when it comes to candy for trick-or-treaters.  You just have to check unit prices.  The packages they sell are small and unit price is usually not better than other retail stores and sometimes it can be worse.  But always check just to be sure.
  • Lollipops - Even a bag of name brand Tootsies or Blow Pops will pack a better deal than chocolate bars.  And the kids who visit your house will still be pleased!  
  • Tootsie Rolls - These have all the yummy chocolatey taste without the big price tag.
  • Smarties - Not my favorite, but most kids like them.
  • Now and Laters - I've seen these at Walmart
  • Candy Coupons - Watch the paper for some good candy coupons.  I have had good luck saving money at CVS when I wanted the more expensive candies like M&Ms or Snickers bars.  

Image found here.

Healthier Options:

While none of these ideas is going to win you the health nut award, they might be a better option if you are looking to either keep the sugar low or the artificial colors to a minimum.
  • Pretzels - Each year you can either find small bags of Utz or Snyder's pretzels in the seasonal section at Walmart or BJ's Wholesale.  Dollar Tree also sells small packs of pretzels that could be distributed.
  • Organic lollipops - I often see these at places like Marshall's.  They can also be ordered online at Vitacost.  
  • Organic or all natural fruit snacks -  You can check out the seasonal section for some good deals, or just buy fruit snacks in the regular section 
  • Granola bars - you can buy the generic ones for a good price at Walmart or your local grocery store.

Non-candy Ideas:

If you are looking to keep the sugar and artificial stuff out of the house altogether, here are some options for you.  The glow sticks probably have the highest fun factor when it comes to non-candy options, but there are other things you can opt for as well.
  • Glow sticks - You can find them for around $10 for 100 on Amazon from various sellers.
  • Stickers - Dollar Tree usually carries multi packs of stickers in boxes, so the treat appears a little more substantial
  • Spider rings- You can get 50 for a dollar at Dollar Tree
  • Tattoos - These can often be found at Dollar Tree and Oriental Trading for a good price.
  • Pencils -  12 for $1 usually at Dollar Tree and Walmart
  • Erasers - Find these at Dollar Tree, Walmart or Oriental Trading
  • Mini bubbles - Dollar Tree sells packs of 8 for $1 in the wedding section.  Depending on the year you may even run into some Halloween themed bubbles.  Also, through oriental trading this year, you can get  48  jack-o-lantern bubbles for $6.50.
  • Toothbrushes - Absolutely joking on this one!  You better watch out for eggs if you opt for this!

Hope you have a fun Halloween and here's to some great Trick-or-Treating!

You might also like:

Toasted Pumpkin Seeds
The Pumpkin Patch

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

The Pumpkin Patch

This is our FAVORITE pumpkin patch.  We've come here every year since the kids were very young. The place is huge and, big bonus, compared to all the other places around, the pumpkins are cheap!  

They do a flat rate of one price for large and one price for small.  There is no weighing and guessing as you approach the scale....oooh, how much is it going to be this time????  If you get a pumpkin bigger than a pie pumpkin, it's considered big.  There are so many to choose from sometimes it's difficult to know where to begin.  You can bring a wagon or just drive down to a spot you like and pick one out.  If it's been a very wet year, the weeds can be overwhelming, but most times it's just fine.  They also sell fall decor like Indian corn and gourds.  The kids always like to pick out a gourd and at prices less than a dollar, we indulge them!

After we pick pumpkins, we head over to the counter to buy some goat food in ice cream cones.  Sometimes the goats get feisty, but if you feed them with an open hand or right from the cone it's all good.  

After some good old fashioned fun feeding the goats we round things out with some homemade ice cream.  My favorite to buy at this time of year is the pumpkin ice cream.  It is delicious!  When we are done with our ice cream the kids usually play on the climbing equipment for a little bit before we head home with our pumpkins.

And you can't deny the pumpkin patch makes the perfect photo opportunity!

Here's the patch we like to visit: Westview Farms Creamery.  But if you're not in Massachusetts, I'm sure there is a great place near you!

You might also enjoy:

Pumpkin Pie
Toasted Pumpkin Seeds
Pumpkin Bread

Saturday, October 1, 2016

More Crochet Washcloths

You can never have enough washcloths.  Here are some I recently worked up with cotton yarn in a variety of colors.   The cotton yarn can be purchased at Walmart or your local craft store for under $3.  I can usually get two washcloths from one skein.

I thought it would look nice to do cloths in coordinating colors and vary the border design.  These would make a great gift when paired with nice dish soap, towel and crochet towel holder.  Here's a link for a crochet towel holder I made, and a pattern for one you can make yourself.

Above are some I worked up with white and green.  I put a ruffled edge on the white one to give it a little flair.  The bottom one is white with a multicolor cotton yarn as a border.  I had a very small amount of this multicolor yarn laying around from a bag of yarn a friend of mine gave me.  This border was a perfect solution to use it up!

If you want to make one yourself, check out the pattern here: The Humble Washcloth
You can add a different color or fancy border.  Or you can keep it simple as in the original pattern, with a single crochet border in the same color as the body of the washcloth.

You might also like:

The Humble Washcloth
Simple Crochet Beanie
Cute Handbag for Little Girls