ideas for celebrating halloween at home

so many people sent me good ideas for halloween this year in lieu of normal trick or treating, so i wanted to save them all in one accessible place!

i get really festive on all holidays, so despite doing the normal activities this year, i wasn’t planning on not celebrating big. we are renting a house with my family in palm springs (just randomly for halloween because it was the week that was avail) but because we’re always together on halloween, we thought it would be a super fun way to celebrate.

ps the one and only silver lining of not trick or treating is that arlo only took almond joys last year since they’re blue, we were like omg arlo stop please take any other candy!! now we can curate the candy selection hahah.

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aaaall the halloween activities in one day

spend the entire day doing all the fun halloween things you’d normally spread out throughout the month. play halloween music, make caramel apples, read scary books in the dark, carve pumpkins, make halloween crafts, watch scary movies!

candy hunt

hide the candy around the house or in your backyard like an easter egg hunt.

haunted house

decorate each room of your house with different themes for them to discover, this one is for the hardcore parents but i’m sure you could do it low key too haha.

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make each door like a different house

have a family member stand behind each door for an indoor trick or treat session!! or if you’re without the help of other relatives, wear a new costume every time they come back to the door!!

scavenger hunt in the dark

hide candy all over the house and turn off all the lights. let them do a hunt with a flashlight and bonus points for playing halloween music while they do it.

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BYO candy

if you live in a neighborhood thats into decorating and don’t want to miss out on the halloween walk to see all the houses, just bring your own candy for your kids and skip the whole stranger contact part.

make your own candy

instead of buying candy, it would be so fun to make your own!!

outdoor movie night

setup a projector and watch scary movies!! or just do it inside like i would haha.

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halloween countdown

the same way an advent calendar amps up the kids anticipation for the big day, a halloween countdown would be just as exciting. we don’t have a lot to look forward to these days so it’s a good way to make the whole month special.

i’m thinking of spending the month of october doing halloween crafts, and then bringing them all with us to palm springs to decorate.

hunt for halloween decorations

we’ve spend many nights taking walks or drives to see nearby halloween decorations. it feels like people are going way bigger than usual because of the situation and we’ve seen some amazing ones. we’ve made it extra spooky by walking after dinner when it’s dark and we all bring head lamps or flash lights. 

countdown calendar

count down the days and make the whole month exciting!! i made these printable halloween cards that you could do in a standard advent calendar or just put in a jar and pick one out whenever you are looking for an activity to do!

my cards in action!! by adrianna traxler

dinner by candlelight

bonus points for a halloween or pumpkin themed dinner, or just order a pizza and eat it in the dark!!

tailgate trick or treating

someone said she’s planning to have all the friends of her pod go park in a parking lot together and filling their trunks with candy so all the kids can go around from car to car to collect! so cute and super easy to stay distant.

halloween scavenger hunt

make your own neighborhood halloween scavenger hunt or print a cute one like this one from studio diy!

make SPOOOOOKY halloween treats

i rounded up a whole bunch of fun halloween treats and snacks to make with your kids, and then i made this skull snack board that was so simple and arlo was sooo excited about it.

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trick or treating, safely

someone said she was thinking she’d hand out candy (if kids actually come) with tongs lol. definitely seems safer than the kids rummaging through a bowl. if you would want to take your kids door to door, you could always sanitize all the candy when you get home. wow what a time to be alive!!

i hope this helped! would love to hear if you have any ideas as well.

and because i loooove halloween– i made a halloween amazon faves list here

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  1. Jill katz says:

    Thii I e is such a great idea. This year we are going to be on a family trip so some of these ideas are inspiring me. Thanks for your ideas on how to celebrate holidays during the pandemic. Hope you will address thanksgiving and Xmas.

  2. Thank you so much for this list! Now I feel way more excited to celebrate this year! We will all find a way to make it work.

  3. Covid is definitely bringing out the best in our creativity and problem-solving skills! I love all these alternatives to traditional celebrations -bonus points for any ideas that can be done outside in the dark because I think that is where the absolute magic happens on Halloween – and even though my daughters are all grown up, I can’t wait to try a few at our house.