Halloween costumes that won’t break the bank!
I’m going to date myself here…
Who remembers when Halloween costumes came in a box from the toy store? Cellophane wrapping on the front allowed you to peek inside and see the mask and also the less than flattering plastic smock to slip on over your clothing. Anyone?
Costumes have come a long way, haven’t they? Many companies specialize in head-to-toe transformations leaving your little superhero or fuzzy monster dressed to the nines yet your bank account does a stutter step. For the crafty parent who can sew, staple and glue like no one else, this is your time to shine and get funky with the fabric. And then there’s chief family officers like me that wish they had the time and talent to Martha Stewart-up a costume.
Spending large amounts on an outfit means less dollars in other areas of our monthly budget. That’s why our family gets costume creative without breaking the bank, or stitching our fingers together.
Our favorite place to begin costume shopping is in our own home. Last year, my daughter and her friends decided on a Girl Power theme and dressed as powerful women in history. I’m not sure where she came from concerning the DNA pool since my friends and I all dressed like Madonna when we were her age. She borrowed a denim shirt from me and rolled up the cuffs, used baggy jeans from her brother, tied a red bandana in her hair and with a little 1940’s glam makeup went as “Rosie the Riveter.”
My oldest son is hosting a “Get Your Dead On” themed party this Halloween weekend. Zombie costumes are not optional for party guests. He and his buddies hit up our local donation store and chose clothing they could tear, smear and destroy for just under $10. A girl in his biology class is artistic and loves doing makeup, so the guys pitched in to buy makeup and she’ll work her transformation magic for them just for the experience of it. He’s a bargain hunter in the making.
My youngest cannot decide what to be for Halloween. His certainty on what to dress up as changes as frequently as the Midwestern weather each time he looks at costumes online. Visiting our local children’s clothing resale shop works out best for him. He can choose between popular costumes and I can buy him a like-new getup at a fraction of the price. That makes both of us happy.
Chief Family Officer
P.S. Don’t forget to talk with your children about Halloween safety!
Stay on the sidewalk
Always walk with a group of friends or a trusted adult
Flashlights are important in the dark
Examine your candy with an adult
Test your costume and makeup for safety and add reflective tape if necessary
You never enter the home of a stranger
Fall party pleasers for the school crowd
Sugar coated, sugar caked, and sugared up until the cows come home. If that doesn’t describe Halloween treats our kids know and love, I’m not sure what does. Believe me, I love candy just as much as the next person who buys truckloads to appease costumed little ones when they arrive, and say, “Trick or treat!” I never handout Bottle Caps or Butterfingers on Halloween. They tempt me in the days ahead, begging me to eat them. It would be rude not to give in to their request, right? So it’s best they remain out of my grocery cart, otherwise, it’s back to the store I trot to buy more.
But I digress…
Planning party snacks for school can feel challenging. Some schools prefer classrooms celebrate a fall harvest theme, while others are open to ghosts, goblins and things that go bump in the night. Providing food kids will devour, while being mindful of school policies on snacks, as well as remaining sensitive to children with food allergies, might make you cringe and sign up to only provide paper plates—I get it. I really do.
So let’s put a little fun and creativity into snacks while saving time and sanity! I’m a big believer in not reinventing the wheel, so thank you to the crafty folks who shared their ideas online!
Snacks with a little prep time required:
Quick and crafty snacks:
Boo Cheese Sticks & Jack O’ Lantern Cups
If you are short on time, yet have a black Sharpie marker, this is the snack for you! You could also replace the mandarin orange cups with orange gelatin snack cups.
Wash and remove seedless grapes from the stem, then place grapes into a bowl. Craft a little sign that says, “Spider Eggs! Beware!” Set a few plastic spiders around the bowl, a little fake web material underneath, and you’re good to go.
Lucky for us Chief Family Officers who might be super short on time, companies love to create snacks packaged for Halloween that you can simply purchase ready-to-go and send off to school. No assembly required snacks is sometimes what a busy family needs.
Chief Family Officer