A Last-Minute Halloween Party


Sometimes plans change or I put things off until the last minute, or I tell myself I don't want to make a big deal out of the holidays this year. Then the big day rolls around, and I can't help myself. What starts as inviting a few friends over after trick-o-treating turns into an all-out Halloween party. If you've found yourself in a similar predicament, or if you simply don't have time to work, be full-time mom, and a party planner all wrapped up into one - I feel your pain! Here are some super last-minute ways to conjure up a Halloween bash.


LAST MINUTE HALLOWEEN DECOR

Advice I constantly give out about party decor is let the food do the job. You already have to spend time and money on food, so make that the centerpiece and all you'll have to add are a few little extras like balloons or a banner. I created this Halloween buffet at the last minute with items from the Dollar Tree; including the large Halloween trays, cupcake stands, craft pumpkin, and the black streamers for a backdrop. I covered the table with a black sheet I already had and layered on some black creepy cloth.




Eyeball candies from the dollar store inserted into a no-carve pumpkin served as both decor and a sweet treat. You really can't have too much candy on Halloween, and it's such a quick and easy way to fill in a buffet or centerpiece.


LAST MINUTE HALLOWEEN TREATS

Who doesn't have extra candy corn lying around on Halloween? Place them in a clear glass container to display suckers, cake pops, or simple marshmallow pops. I'd love to craft Halloween cake pops, but I just don't have time for that on Halloween. I took some colorful paper straws to turn simple marshmallow ghost peeps into Halloween pops. My kids got just as excited about those as they would've some gourmet treat that would've taken me hours to make.


You may have seen these vampire doughnuts on Pinterest. They're the best, aren't they? All you need are some plastic vampire teeth, which if you're a mom, I know you have some extra ones on Halloween. Then you just need a dab of white and black icing for the eyes. You could also use chocolate chips or edible sugar eyes.

I've also learned to have edible candy eyeballs on hand each Halloween. You can bake them on top of cookies, place them on top of cupcakes, use them with strips of white icing to create mummy cupcakes or cookies, etc.

Fill in the buffet with quick snack foods like popcorn and pretzels. Unless it's a Halloween dinner party or a birthday party, you should assume most guests will have eaten dinner before trick-o-treating, so you really don't have to stress over main dishes.


For last-minute party favors, place candy in a cupcake liner then into a small plastic bag and tie with ribbon. You could also arrange several jars full of different candies and set out treat bags for each child to fill up.

LAST MINUTE HALLOWEEN GAMES

With a few simple craft supplies and a few items from the dollar store or grocery store, you can have plenty of fun for the kids after trick-o-treating.

This mummy craft doesn't require any special Halloween craft supplies, only black and white construction paper. Cut long thin strips of white paper along with two large white circles and two small black circles for each mummy craft. Provide each child with a black piece of construction paper, glue, and the cut-out shapes.

You can make a fun outdoor Halloween game with other items from the dollar store. Pick up six $1 witch hats and a pack of glow-stick necklaces. Arrange the hats on the ground in a triangle to create a Halloween-themed ring toss game. Have each child try to make a glow necklace land on a hat, and reward the winners with extra candy.

Have apples on hand? Bring back the old-fashioned bobbing for apples game. I know, it's gross letting every child dunk their faces germ hole first into a basin of germ soup, but hear me out. You can have smaller containers (one for each child) and set a timer to see who can get the most apples out of his or her own bucket in a certain amount of time.

Make the food into a fun activity. As I often advise readers to utilize the buffet as party decor, I also love to make a dessert do double duty as a children's party activity. For Halloween, melt down caramel or candy apple topping and let the kids dip their own apples. Arrange a variety of toppings for them to pick from. It's less work for you, and more fun for them. Win-win!

Sometimes the hardest thing about throwing together a last-minute seasonal party is finding items still available in stores. If you supplement with items that are available year round, you can throw an amazing party at the very last minute. In the end, it's all about the kids and the candy anyway, so just relax and have fun!


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Image via Martha Stewart


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