As you all know fall and Halloween hold a special place in my heart. Every year we take a lot of time to decorate our house and get ready for our annual Halloween party. This party is for adults and my friends are asking me in August for the date so that they can secure a sitter. With that being said , I thought that it would be nice to have a kid friendly version of our adult party. Last year, we invited my son’s entire Kinder class to our house for a Halloween party. So many children and parents showed up that it was overwhelming and a bit of a free-for-all. This year, I’m re-thinking my whole elaborate plan and keeping it simple and small, while making it family friendly. This year we decided to have a Pumpkin Carving Party on Saturday, October 29th and here are a few tips on keeping it simple and fun.
1) Choose a small group of people and send out the invites. We chose to invite 6 families this year. In an effort to keep things ‘green’ I sent out an Evite. Here you can choose from Halloween themed pre-designed invitations. They are professional looking and the evite website is user-friendly and free. It sends out your invite via email and also keeps track of who is coming, provides a map to your house, and sends out a reminder email the day before your party.
2.) Think of the mess you will have to clean up. Pumpkin guts are sure to get everywhere so this year we will be doing it outside among the fall leaves and cool weather. I have long tables covered in newspaper. You could also use disposable plastic tablecloths. I just wanted something that is quick and easy to clean up.
3.) Spooky Music anyone? You can’t have a pumpkin carving party without music to fit the theme of the evening. I downloaded a bunch of Halloween music and will play it on my iPod. Some of my music includes: Monster Mash, Thriller, The Nightmare Before Christmas (soundtrack), and some other spooky sounds like glass breaking. The music is fitting for the atmosphere and the kids really get excited about it too.
4.) Pumpkin carving is fun but so is decorating. I fill the table with kitchen tools, ice-cream scoopers, pumpkin scrapers, easy to use pumpkin saws, stencils, and candles. This year I’m also going to add paints (nontoxic), toothpicks and vegetables to our arsenal of tools. This is partly to get the younger children involved and the older children get to be more creative and imaginative too. We can use paint to add stitches to our pumpkins or we can add broccoli to our pumpkins for silly hair. You get the idea.
5.) Last, I ask that everyone bring a small dish to share. It helps me by not stressing about what serve and we end up with a wide array of foods. There is usually something there to suit everyone’s palate and it keeps things simple. Not to mention, I don’t have so many dishes to wash and the guest gets to take home the dish they brought.
We will end the evening this year with an ‘award ceremony’. The awards will be for scariest pumpkin, most creative, most funny, etc, etc. We will also line all of our pumpkins up and see how they look in the dark. The kiddos get a big kick out of this! I also send the kids home with a treat bag and thank them for coming. This is such a fun time of year and I hope you take the time to spend it with people you enjoy!
Happy pumpkin hunting and carving!
P.S. I also have the kids dressed in whatever costume they feel like wearing. This gets them really excited for the big day!