My family and I prefer to celebrate Harvest. I enjoy providing fun-filled alternatives to Halloween!
I know there are many families that prefer to celebrate Harvest instead of Halloween. Here are a few things you can do with your family to celebrate harvest time!
Pumpkin Patch Trip!
I thought it would be a good idea to go to the pumpkin patch as a family this year. (I usually take the kids during the week while hubby is at work). So I picked a Saturday that we were all together, thinking the popular local farm pumpkin patch would be waiting to receive us, but no! We got to the exit of the pumpkin patch and had to get off and just turn around. The line of cars heading to the pumpkin patch was a mile long!
We went to another pumpkin patch, the kind that travels. The kids had a blast and some of the attractions were better suited for Rhyse and Rhyan. There was a giant slide, several inflatable mazes and slides, live ponies, and a rock wall.
The only thing I didn’t like was everything cost tickets. I wished there were some complimentary attractions. Other than that, it was a great night of family fun! Rhyse and Rhyan picked out the course of which attractions we visited. AJ was in a bad mood at first, but later warmed up to the new environment. He even took his own pony ride, with no hands! Amana was content, watching her big brothers from the comfort of her stroller.
A word of caution: this activity is not for the perfectionist mom! Let me explain, if your children are like mine, they are challenged in the listening department. So when it came time to dip our treats, they did it their way. The results weren’t pleasant to the eye, but they were tasty and the kids had a blast.
Goodie Decorating 2.0
I used the large and mini Nutter Butter cookies, Wilton’s chocolate melts in (orange and light cocoa), pretzel sticks, colored icing gel (in green and orange), and a few drops of orange gel coloring.
For the “acorn” treats, the light cocoa, I dipped half of the cookie at an angle and set it aside. For the stem of the acorn, I broke a pretzel stick into thirds and dipped it into the chocolate and placed it immediately at the top of the cookie before the rest of the chocolate had a chance to dry.
The “pumpkin” treats process was similar except the cookies were fully dipped down covered in the orange chocolate. After I dipped about three cookies, I realized the color of the chocolate was more peach than orange. I decided to doctor up the color by adding three to for drops of orange gel coloring. Unfortunately, the gel coloring caused the chocolate to stiffen, so it took a bit of time to fix it (by gradually adding small amounts of cooking oil). Eventually, the color and the consistency came to a happy medium and I was able to dip the cookies.
Crafts and Decorations
I feel like a harvest celebration falls right in line with Thanksgiving, so I like for my kids to do Thanksgiving crafts. We make leaves, turkeys, pumpkins, and acorns for door hangers and wall or table decor. I love to write on the back of the craft, their name and the year it was made.
Last weekend, I sat down with AJ and we made an adroable thanksgiving door hanger. You can purchase a small craft kit like this at your local craft store for a reasonable price. Most of the pieces have an adhesive on the back, but I decided to use my hot glue gun to stick the pieces together.
I asked him where he wanted to put each piece, he pointed, and I glued. He was so proud of his project! When he finished he wanted to take pictures with it, and he excitedly ran through the house showing his work to my husband and his big brothers. I think his reaction was my favorite part. This is such an easy way to celebrate and spend quality time with your little ones.
Fun for Mom
Of course, as a creative personality, I have to find something to do just for me. As a way to release my creative energy, I like to decorate my entry table and shelves with harvest/thanksgiving decorations. I bought a pound of mixed nuts, and I use them in leave shaped dishes. The nuts are beautiful with a variety of shapes , colors, and textures.
Every year, after Halloween, I go to local Targets (yes multiple stores, lol), to shop the clearance section for fall findings. In the picture below the foil decorated wooden leaves were purchased last year; a pack of 6 for only $.30! You can’t beat that type of deal. If I posted photos of all the things I find during those sales this post would be extremely long.
Ultimately, the best way to celebrate is with the people you love. It’s important to teach your children to appreciate love and life; I think that’s the true focus of holidays and celebrations. Creating memories and traditions that can be passed on, shared, and fondly remembered for lifetimes.
I sincerely hope you all enjoy your Harvest or Halloween celebration safely, happily and most of all, with love and sunshine in your heart.
Have a Happy Harvest!
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Sharing the sunshine of life; balancing wife, mom, faith, and purpose.