Happier Halloween Plans for Toddlers. The World of Kitsch in Junior Magazine

The World of Kitsch is in print monthly in local publication Junior Magazine. If you're in the North Down area of Northern Ireland you can pick up the magazine with The County Down Spectator.

Halloween can be a strange old time for toddlers and tots. The shops are full of scary masks and spooky decorations, which can overwhelm tiny minds who sometimes struggle to learn which frightening things are real, or just pretend. The last thing us parents want after a busy Halloween Night party is a scared sleepless little man or lady with images of witches & monsters lurking outside the window in their imagination.

There is an alternative that the whole family can enjoy. Halloween parties don't have to be devilishly themed. There are other ways to give your little ones a party for the time of year, without the nightmares after the sparklers have fizzed out. 

Here are two ideas to build an evening of fun around.

1. Harvest Carnival
Everyone loves a trip to the fun fair. How about a harvest carnival, celebrating the rich food & vibrant colours of the season. Set up 'stalls' with pumpkin or turnip carving and bobbing for apples.
Make your own ring toss game with painted used drink bottles, making these themselves can be part of a crafting afternoon the week before the party. Your children will feel very proud they have contributed to the decorations too.
Use threaded strings of popcorn & homemade paper bunting as carnival decor. Another idea is to make plain cupcakes and buy a set of icing pens. Let the children doodle their own cupcake designs and add sprinkles.

2. Noah's Ark Party
One of the best parts of Halloween is the fancy dress, and there are so many options outside the whole horror genre that will still be wonderful fun for boys and girls alike.
A Noah's Ark party is also a great alternative to a Halloween party for any church young people's groups.
The fancy dress code is straightforward, any animal, beast, bird or fish you desire. Decorations can be bright and colourful streamers made from coloured paper & balloons. Don't forget to make a giant rainbow with paper and paint, again that could be a weekday craft afternoon with your children as you prepare for your guests' visit.
With a Noah's Ark party you can really be inventive with the food. Try to make the spread unusual, use dried cereals as 'feed' for the animals. Green jelly as 'grass' and burgers and hotdogs for your tiny carnivores. 

You can add to these ideas and you'll end up with an alternative to a Halloween party that everyone will remember. Happy Halloween readers.

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