We’re fast approaching the time of year when you’re likely to see little ghosts, goblins, witches, and princesses roaming around town to look for a treat. Halloween is a favorite holiday for many children (and parents). Pretending to be a scary monster or sweet fairy is the epitome of fun for children, and the free candy certainly doesn’t lessen children’s excitement for the holiday. Choosing or creating a costume, decorating pumpkins, making a scarecrow or fall display, and trick-or-treating are just a few of the reasons why people look forward to October 31 every year.
Picking out costumes for Halloween with your children can be tricky since there are so many options to choose from each year. Google and Yahoo recently released their lists of the most searched for Halloween costumes in 2013. Minion, Batman, Minnie Mouse, pirate, Alice in Wonderland, zombie, vampire, Hello Kitty, and cat costumes are just a few of the popular costumes listed.
Try picking out a costume that children can add to their dress up closet and use to play dress up in all year round. Picking a multipurpose costume helps you save money and encourages children to use their imagination as they pretend play. Kaplan Toys offers a variety of quality Dress Up Fun costumes that children can use again at all times of the year. Career, dance, and multicultural costumes are just a few of the costumes featured in our selection.
Be sure to put reflective tape on top of your child’s costume if they are not wearing reflective clothing on Halloween night. Don’t let the excitement of Halloween distract your family from taking safety precautions. Here are a few other tips for Halloween safety:
- Be sure that costumes, shoes, and other accessories are the correct length and size to ensure that kids can see where they are going and do not trip or fall.
- Costume accessories should be soft and flexible to prevent any accidental injuries.
- Be sure to remove any choking hazards and to wear flame-resistant costumes.
- Go trick-or-treating in groups.
- Consider trunk-or-treats as an alternative to trick-or-treating in a neighborhood.
- Take a flashlight with you, especially if you are going to be out after dusk.
- Only trick-or-trick at well-lit houses or at trunk-or-treats.
- Make sure your child knows to not accept candy from someone without parent or guardian permission.
- Tell your children to not eat any candy that has been tampered with or opened.
- Do not let your children snack while they are trick-or-treating unless you look to make sure that what they are eating has not been tampered with or opened.
Caramel or chocolate-covered apples are great sweet treats to make and enjoy with your children during this time of the year. You can even encourage your kids to eat fruit and nuts with this delicious dessert or snack! Have your children help you prepare the apples and toppings, and tell them about your favorite Halloween memories as a kid as you work on the apples together. The following recipe makes 5-6 caramel or chocolate-covered apples. Enjoy!
1. Prepare the apples
Wash and dry apples thoroughly. Remove stem and stick a wooden craft stick into the stem end.
2. Assemble the ingredients
Pick what toppings you want on your caramel or chocolate-covered apples. Mini M&M’s, chopped nuts, crushed cookies, coconut, and sprinkles are all great toppings. Prepare the toppings you choose and place them into individual bowls.
3. Prepare chocolate or caramel
Melt chocolate baking chips or caramel bits in the microwave according to directions on the packaging.
4. Dip the apples in chocolate or caramel
Use a spoon to help cover the apple in chocolate or caramel if you can’t get it all covered. Be sure to let the excess chocolate or caramel drip off or gently scrape some of the excess off at the bottom before you move to the next step.
5. Roll the apples in toppings
Roll the apples in your favorite toppings. Be sure to try different combinations. You may need to press the toppings in some with your hand to ensure that they stick to the apple. Place the apple on wax paper once you’ve finished adding the toppings. Refrigerating the caramel or chocolate apples for 15-30 minutes may help the chocolate or caramel harden faster. You can also drip melted chocolate onto the caramel apple or vice versa as another topping option.