Halloween


Halloween Doughnuts

Halloween Donuts

Growing up, we lived out in the country and didn’t have any neighbors within walking distance. So trick-or-treating was a family affair and my parents would drive us around to houses visiting widows, my great aunts, and old family friends in our area. We’d be bundled up with our costumes hidden under our winter coats. Some friends would have specially made goodie bags waiting for us, some would insist the whole family come inside and take off our coats to pose for our annual Halloween Polaroid photo. Obviously, this isn’t the key to filling pillow cases with candy in one night, but my childhood Halloween’s are full of fond memories of our traditional stops with the popcorn balls, the annual pictures and the special people we would visit on that night.

Halloween Donuts

Because of those memories, I wanted to do something a little different so our first Halloween in our home we (I) decided we’d hand out homemade doughnuts. If you want to make yourself known in the neighborhood, cooking doughnuts is a good way to do it! Since then it has grown into a tradition that neighbors look forward to each Halloween.

Halloween Donuts

While it is a little more involved than handing out candy, I do all the prep work before hand, and freeze the doughnuts already cut out. (doughnut cutter) So all we do Halloween night is fry them up. Everyone is welcome to one–moms, dads, and grandparents and we go until we run out. Last year we handed out 12 dozen doughnuts in just under 1.5 hours.

Here is the setup for last year’s doughnuts. This glass table is awesome to cook on, since we don’t have to worry about it melting and we use a dutch oven on a cache cooker to fry them in. And the glass table let’s us put the lights under the table to keep our work surface cleared off, and lit up. The speakers playing Halloween music and the cauldron holds our cooked donuts. The patio umbrella protects me (and the hot oil) from the occasional rain drops.

Halloween Donuts

The doughnuts are a cake doughnut that uses mashed potatoes. YAY Idaho! (you know I’m from Idaho, right?). Which is perfect, since we don’t have to let them raise before we cook them. We pull them straight out of the freezer and they puff up in the hot oil. I use a thermometer to keep the oil at the right temperature. The first year I tried using my candy thermometer, but as soon as the sun went down it was impossible to read. This digital meat thermometer is a lot easier to use in the dark.

Halloween Donuts

Here they are straight out of the fryer. A paper towels absorb the oil before we douse them them cinnamon sugar. The cinnamon and sugar sticks a lot better if they aren’t super oily.

Halloween Donuts

Halloween Donuts

My favorite part might be watching the little kids try to decide what they are supposed to do with their doughnut. It’s a hard decision between eating it right now and dropping it in their bag to save for later. We always recommend they eat it.

Halloween Donuts

Halloween Doughnuts adapted from King Arthur Flour
Ingredients
  • 2½ cups flour
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¼ cup vegetable shortening
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • ¾ cup mashed potato (I use instant potatoes to save time)
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1½ quarts vegetable oil, for frying
  • cinnamon-sugar for coating
Instructions
  1. Sift together the flour, baking soda, salt, baking powder, and nutmeg. Set aside.
  2. In a separate bowl, cream together the shortening and sugar. Add the eggs and mashed potatoes to the shortening mix.
  3. Add the flour mixture and milk alternately to the creamed mixture, beginning and ending with the flour mixture.
  4. The resulting dough will be quite soft, more like a drop-biscuit dough instead of a "rollable" dough. The dough can be covered and refrigerated overnight, if desired.
  5. Turn the dough out onto a very well floured surface and knead a few times to make it stiff enough to roll with a rolling pin. Roll the dough using a well-floured rolling pin until it's about ½" thick. Dip a doughnut cutter in flour (each time you cut), and cut out the doughnuts. Save the holes; or re-roll them with leftover dough. Try to handle the dough as little as possible; the less you work the dough, the more tender the doughnuts will be.
  6. Heat the oil to 365°F. Test the temperature with a thermometer; or with a slice of bread, as follows: lower half a slice of bread into the hot fat. If it takes 1 minute for the bottom side to brown nicely, the fat is at the best temperature for frying doughnuts.
  7. Fry doughnuts about 2 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Drain on brown paper bags or paper towels. Check one of the fried donuts after it is cooled to be sure the center is cooked through.
  8. While still warm, shake doughnuts in cinnamon-sugar.

Halloween Donuts

Happy Halloween week!

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sm pumkin mat 1 sm pumpkin mat 3 sm pumpkin mat 2 Hours of Halloween fun for little ones with this pumpkin playdoh mat.  You can use it for preschool/class parties too.  Just download, print and laminate (or place in a page protector).  Grab some black or yellow playdoh, shape cookie cutters, and let the kids design their own playdoh jack o’ lantern.   sm pumpkin playdoh mat

cc_download PERSONAL USE ONLY PLEASE.  PROPERTY OF CRAFTING CHICKS, LLP.

 

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DIY Clay Pumpkin Napkin Rings

Hi! Its Ali from Dream Crafter!

Whenever I think about Thanksgiving crafts, the first thing that comes to mind is a beautiful table setting. I’m a real sucker for a pretty place setting with all the little details that make the meal special. My husband of course, could not care less as long as the food is good. But I guess thats why we make such a good team. :) So today I wanted to show you an easy way to dress up your place settings for Thanksgiving in one day! (My favorite kind of craft.) I present to you the DIY Clay Pumpkin Napkin Rings!

DIY Clay Pumpkin Napkin Ring Here is what you’ll need:

-A clay you can bake in the oven like “Sculpey” or you can make a homemade version like a salt dough.

-Sculpting tools (like a fancy butter knife from your kitchen)

-Spray paint.

Ok, I have to admit something here. This is a total no no for crafters but I’m going to be honest. I was walking through the D.I. the other day and I found a bag of these gorgeous handmade clay pumpkin rings that someone had already taken the time to make. Boom. I didn’t even have to sculpt my own. Which is good because I would probably butcher them and they would end up looking like blobs instead of pumpkins. But if you have ANY skill with play dough, you should be ok. Just make them like these with straight edges and with a center large enough for the napkin to go through and you are all set.

This is what they looked like when I found them at the thrift store: (Sorry for the terrible pic. I took it with my iPhone.)

DSCN4465 Then bake your clay so it sets up hard. Then I would wait a few days for the to REALLY dry out. Then I just spray painted mine gold (because I love gold) and let them dry!

pile of pumpkin rings I love the look of the gold with the natural textures for a Thanksgiving place setting. It adds a little modern to traditional and makes a nice touch.

DSCN4544 A big thanks to the crafting chicks for having me back again! Have a good Thanksgiving!

-Ali

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sm halloween porch header spider sm halloween porch 8 Sharing some Halloween Porch Inspiration today!  Love October! So much fun…especially for my kids.  This year we made a spider porch!  Full of all sorts of fun spiders!

Wreaths:  Floracraft styrofoam wreaths

Ribbon: Michaels

Silver sparkly spiders & Sparkly web: Michaels Craft Stores

Bendable furry spiders:  Various Places!  These are so fun to attach to any railing, wreath etc.

Jute Letter Tutorial

Fabric for Pillows:  IKEA

For more Halloween Porch Inspiration, click on the last photo:)

sm halloween porch 13 sm halloween porch 12 sm halloween porch 14 sm halloween porch 11 sm halloween porch 10 sm halloween porch 9 sm halloween porch 6 sm halloween porch 5 sm halloween porch 3 sm halloween porch 2 sm halloween porch 7 sm halloween porch 4 13 Fun and Frightful Halloween Porches

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This post is sponsored by Michael’s.
bumblebee_costume

Anyone else find themselves throwing together Halloween costumes at the last minute? No. Just me then.

For the past 8 years the last minute has worked well, as my boys are perfectly content to wear what’s in the costume bin, but I have a feeling our 2 year old little girl is about to change that. Well, I actually see more of changing costumes in our future than really scrambling to put something together at the last minute. With her strong opinions and love of dressing up we already go through a lot of costume changes every day!

bee_supplies

As part of our Michael’s Makers challenge for the month I put together a quick costume using a few supplies from their store. I found these cute little antenna and the candy bag in their Halloween section and picked up some yellow and black tulle for a coordinating tutu. Tutu’s are easy on, easy off making those constant wardrobe changes quick. Plus they are sooo fancy and my little girl loves to twirl in them.

If you haven’t made a tulle tutu before, they are quick and simple. tutu

Tip: cut elastic to be a little smaller than the waist, because it stretches as you add the tulle.

Bumblebee Costume

And here she is, our cute little bumblebee who would have much rather been twirling than sitting for a photo :)

 

Haven’t decided what you want to be yet? Take a look at some of Michaels DIY Halloween costume projects on Michaels.com for inspiration.


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Darling Zombie Apocalypse Throw Pillows

Zombie Apocalypse Pillows I’m so super excited to be posting this project today and i’m even more excited to talk about this awesome fabric from Riley Blake!!! Yes, it’s ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE fabric created by Emily Taylor Design for Riley Blake Designs, who would have thought!!!  When I first saw this fabric when their yearly catalogue came out a handful of months ago, I knew I had to get my hands on some.  I love it so much because it’s stylish and goes with my decor and it’s actually cute!  You can see below, how fun it is.  I also love this design because it’s Halloween-ish, but doesn’t look cheesy like most Halloween fabric.  SCORE.

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There are a million and one pillow tutorials out there so I will spare you those details.  I just wanted to share this fabric…isn’t it cute.  I love the quotes on this one.

_MG_1291

Here’s the simple pocket on the back of the pillow.  I purchased pillows on the clearance rack at Marshalls.  The long pillow was $13 and the square pillow was $5.  I took off the other pillow cover and used the down insert in the new pillow cover I created.

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I LOVE this one. All the zombies…so clever without being gross.

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Call me crazy, but they’re just so cute.

_MG_1286 I love these so much and my kids do as well!! There’s just something unconventional and amazing about it. What do you think??

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This post is sponsored by Elmer’s. All opinions are my own.

Paint-Crackled-Pumpkin

 

Have you heard about Paint Crackle?  My mom was a big tole painter back in the day and I remember her using the technique.  I thought it might be fun to break it out for these little ceramic pumpkins I’ve had sitting around.

ceramic-pumpkins

Do you know what I discovered?  You don’t need expensive creams to get a paint crackle effect.  All you need is some Elmer’s Glue All.

So here’s how I achieved my fun looking crackled pumpkins.

First off paint your pumpkins with a base color that you want to show through.  I choose a Espresso from Americana. And after that paint dries, paint a layer of Elmer’s Glue All over top.

How-to-paint-crackle

 

You can see the difference in the pumpkin coated in Elmer’s Glue vs.  the one that has just been painted.  Once the glue has dried add your top layer of paint.  Go light on this layer in order for the crackle effect to happen.

And this is what you have once it’s dry!  I’m loving my new pumpkins!  Have you tried the crackle effect?  What do you think?

 

Paint-Crackle

 

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Fancy Pumpkin

This post is in partnership with Michael’s #TrickYourPumpkin sweepstakes. All ideas and opinions are my own.

How to make a fancy pumpkin

Every year my extended family has this fun huge Halloween party.  There is a contest involved for the best pumpkin.  I have yet to win. I have some pretty clever cousins, aunts and uncles.  So when Micheal’s announced their #TrickYourPumpkin sweepstakes. I was excited to take part.  Now I know my pumpkin isn’t earth shattering, but I love it.  It’s fancy and gold and simple.  Here’s how you can make one too.

First run to Michael’s and snag a pumpkin and this fun gold decoupage trim from the Martha Stewart line. There are all sorts of fun trims you could use, but I liked this fun fancy stuff.

Take your trim and you could always start to hot glue it right off the bat, but I wanted to make sure everything was where I wanted it, so I start by taping the trim down.

how-to-make-a-fancy-pumpkin

 

Then snag your low temp glue gun.  (Make sure it’s low temp cause you don’t want to burn through your pumpkin.) Start adding small beads of glue and tapping the trim into place.

gold-fancy-pumpkin

And there you have it.  One fancy pumpkin for your front porch! What supplies would you snag from Micheal’s to #TrickYourPumpkin?  If you’d like to enter the sweepstakes, just upload your pumpkin creations via Instagram any time between Oct. 4 through 31 for a chance to win a $250 Michaels gift card and Plaid products each Friday throughout the month of October.  Make sure to use the hashtags #TrickYourPumpkin and #sweepstakes and tag @MichaelsStores to be entered to win.  Good luck!

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Halloween Book Banner

Spooky-Halloween-Book-Banner

I decided I needed some new Halloween decor this year.

My mom found this old poetry book at my grandma’s house and I knew want I wanted to do with it.  It was to become a Spooky Halloween Book Banner!

I found the pages that I wanted to use…some are spookier than others, like The Raven. Then I went into my Cricut Design Space and choose a few spooky Halloween images.  There’s a ton in there so it was lots of fun to find just what I was looking for.

Then I gathered up my Halloween paper, most of which is from s-e-i, and got cutting on my Cricut Explore.

book-banner-for-halloween

 

I had this cream lace hanging out in my craft supplies and used it to hang the pages from. I love the fun added touch it gives the banner.

halloween-book-banner

 

 

Then I decided to attach the pages to the lace with staples.  You could go with whatever you want, but I like the edge it brings to the project.

how-to-make-a-halloween-book-banner

I’m so happy with the final outcome.

halloween-banner

 

finished-book-banner

What new Halloween decor have you crafted up this year?

 

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