Congratulations to Andrea F. for winning the ebook of Christmas Crafts for Kids and a belated congratulations to Brenda W. for winning The ABC's of Australian Animals yoga book!

I have never really liked the scary parts of Halloween. I don't like where Halloween has gone and how over the top it is. I do remember loving dressing up and trick-or-treating as a child, so I wanted Hazel to have that experience without all the drama and commercialism. For her first Halloween I was excited to dress her up and take her to some family and friends' houses. Now of course she is excited to dress up and go trick-or-treating. I have made her costumes except for the first year where I found an adorable one at a consignment shop.

I chose the duck and lion costumes. She wanted to be the dish and spoon with me since she use to take my hand and tell me to run so we could be the dish and spoon from Hey Diddle, Diddle. Last year she wanted to be Rapunzel and this year she wants to be Cinderella. I finally finished her dress. I still need to put the elastics in her lower sleeves/gloves, but I need her here to measure her arms to do that. Here is the dress.
I bought her a Cinderella wig to go with the costume. I will add a picture to this post once she is dressed up for trick-or-treating. 

She picked the darker blue for her gown instead of the Disney light blue. I should add she has two light blue dress up dresses to be Cinderella, but will not leave either one for any length of time since the cheap fabrics bother her skin. This is why I make so many of her costumes. 

Now Hazel is easily scared so Halloween is not a time we pull out the scary and gory decorations. We tend to focus on pumpkins, though we do have a large spider and web on our staircase this year and some friendly ghosts in our front entrance. I have struggled with explaining Halloween to Hazel and why so many people like to dress up scary. Last year I used the Mexican Day of the Dead to help explain it. Today I found a wonderful way to do it and to bring the religious meaning back to the holiday. Over at Catholic Icing there is a wonderful post on Explaining Halloween to Catholic Kids. I would say not being Catholic, that it could be used for any Christian children.

Then there is the issue of the candy. We try to limit Hazel's sugar input (and should really limit ours more). We have used the story of the Pumpkin Fairy to help with this. I shared our version of the story here.

This year we spent some time making the egg carton pumpkins that you have seen around on-line including some at Sharing Saturday. We took our candy corn rice krispie treats a step further and made them apple and pumpkin shape (we used cookie cutters). We decorated them this time with M&M's and Steve helped Hazel with the decorating.

The final thing I would like to share with you is a wonderful book. Now the note to parents says it is not a Halloween book, but it is about a jack-o'-lantern. The book is The Pumpkin Patch Parable by Liz Curtis Higgs. I bought a copy of this book for my church and then found a used copy at the used book store and picked one up for ourselves. The church used it for Hazel's class earlier this month and one of the crafts they made was a simple one. They took orange jack-o'-lantern goody bags and stuffed them and then added a special leaf on the tie.

The book goes through a farmer planting a pumpkin patch and then when harvest time comes choosing one special large pumpkin to carve a smiling face and leaving it on his porch for all to see. Throughout the book, there are Bible quotes to go with the story. It is really a nice book to take some of the scary away from Halloween and make you like jack-o'-lanterns more.

So that is a bit about our Halloween. How do you celebrate? We are really excited that this year it appears there will not be a Halloween storm so Steve will be home with us!