Tuesday, October 29, 2013

A Healthy Halloween! Top Ten Healthier Halloween Handout Ideas


by Raven Albertson and Nick Read
Photo by Kristin Davenport

Treats don’t have to be pure sugar to be festive and fun! Here are five fabulous and healthier options to handing out candy this halloween night.

1. Toasted Pumpkin Seeds
In the spirit of Halloween, think all things pumpkin! Not only are they festive, but pumpkin seeds pack a punch full of antioxidants!

2. Clementines
Using a sharpie, draw cute Jack-O-Lantern faces on clementines to make adorable pumpkin lookalikes that double as a healthy treat. Clementines are full of Vitamin C that helps boost immune function - Important since Halloween happens to fall right during cold season.

3. Fruit Leather or Dehydrated/Freeze Dried Fruits
Dehydrated fruits are chewy, while freeze-dried fruits have a satisfying crunch packed with flavor. Not only that but these high-fiber foods are naturally sweet and are a great way to sneak in a serving of fruits and vegetables.

4. Popcorn
One of America’s favorite treats is also a whole grain!

5. Sugar-Free Chocolate Milk/Hot Chocolate packets
You can even find vitamin-fortified chocolate milk mixes and hey - “Milk does a body good!” Nix the sugar and keep your spooky skeleton’s bones strong!


Looking for something fun to hand out, but not necessarily something edible? Want to get the kids involved and do some spooky science? Here are our favorite ideas for fun handouts that you can make with common household items. The slime and fake blood could be handed out in ziplock bags.  (Follow the links to find more instructions and photos).

1. Make-Your-Own Slime
Here’s the easiest way to make a big batch Elmer’s Slime. The measurements do not have to be exact but it’s a good idea to start with the proportions below for the first batch. Just vary the quantities of each ingredient to get a new and interesting batch of goo.
This recipe is based on using a brand new 8 ounce bottle of Elmer’s Glue. Empty the entire bottle of glue into a mixing bowl. Fill the empty bottle with warm water and shake (okay, put the lid on first and then shake). Pour the glue-water mixture into the mixing bowl and use the spoon to mix well.
Go ahead… add a drop or two of food coloring.
Measure 1/2 cup of warm water into the plastic cup and add a teaspoon of Borax powder to the water. Stir the solution – don’t worry if all of the powder dissolves. This Borax solution is the secret linking agent that causes the Elmer’s Glue molecules to turn into slime.
While stirring the glue in the mixing bowl, slowly add a little of the Borax solution. Immediately you’ll feel the long strands of molecules starting to connect. It’s time to abandon the spoon and use your hands to do the serious mixing. Keep adding the Borax solution to the glue mixture (don’t stop mixing) until you get a perfect batch of Elmer’s slime. You might like your slime more stringy while others like firm slime. Hey, you’re the head slime mixologist – do it your way!
When you’re finished playing with your Elmer’s slime, seal it up in a zipper-lock bag for safe keeping.


2. Corn Syrup Fake Blood
This is one of the most common recipes, but you’ll see that it doesn’t really look anything like blood. That’s okay… go ahead and make the batch because you’ll use the ingredients a little later.
1 cup corn syrup (commonly sold as Karo Syrup)
1 tablespoon water
2 tablespoons of red food coloring
A few drops of green food coloring
Combine all of these ingredients in the blender and blend away for a few seconds. You can adjust the amount of green food coloring to make the blood a little more brownish-red in color. However, you’ll notice that the blood is a little too transparent.
Take the white towel test… drip a few drops of blood onto a white towel to see how realistic it looks.

3. Milk Secret Messages
Need: paper, paint brush, milk, light

Hand out paper and paint brushes with instructions on writing secret messages. By using milk as an ‘ink’ it is possible to write a message on white paper that will be ‘invisible’ until held over a light. The light will shine through the writing revealing the secret message.

4. & 5. Spinning Disk Illusion (and Potato Stamp)
Need: a potato, knife, black paint, orange paint, string, hole punch, card stock.
At home make two potato stamps: one, in the shape of a pumpkin and the other in the shape of a jack-o-lantern face. See here for how to make a potato stamp.  Get a piece of cardstock and cut out a circle about the same size of the potato. Stamp the pumpkin in orange on one side of the cardstock, and the face in black on the other side. Punch holes on the left and right side of the image. Tie a 12" length of string or yarn through one hole. Repeat with another 12" length of string in the other hole.Wind up the strings by holding each string in one hand and twirling the disc. Pull the strings taut and the disc will start to spin rapidly. What do you notice about the two images? They blur into one combined image!