Friday, October 21, 2011

Monster Treat Bags

Here's a great little craft for even the least crafty of us, and fun for parents and kids to do together. These treat bags are good for Halloween parties (or any party) or for the special little halloweenies that come trick or treating. My demo monster is pretty basic, but you can get as fancy as you want.

What you need:

  • Paper lunch bags
  • cellophane (or a heavy plastic food wrap) 
  • Large googly eyes
  • tape
  • Small sharp scissors
  • glue
  • pencil

Lay the lunch bag out flat on the table and draw a monster mouth shape near the bottom. Make sure you leave some room at the edges (about 3/4 of an inch). Cut out the mouth with your scissors. Be careful not to cut the sides of the bag. It doesn't matter if the edges are ragged, this is a monster mouth after all. 

Once the mouth is open, cut a piece of cellophane big enough to cover the hole. Now you have to tape the cellophane inside the bag. This is the tricky part. Make sure all the edges are securely fastened so that the plastic doesn't come away from the mouth. One piece of tape on each side should do it.

Next come the eyes. You can add as many eyes as you want. If you have different sizes it's fun to mix it up. This is something the kids like to help with. Just don't stick the eyes too close to the top. You want to leave room to fold and close the bag.

The kids can also decorate the bag any way they want. Use crayons, markers, bits of paper, or get fancy with glitter and sequins. Whatever you like. When the monster is finished, fill it with treats. Fold down the top and secure with tape, or you can use a hole punch and tie the bag together with yarn or raffia.


Not only do the kids have a fun treat bag, but they get a preview of the treats inside. You can do mini versions of these with paper candy bags.

Just in case you don't want to fill them up with sugar, here are some ideas for non-candy treats:
  • small packs of crayons
  • mini stampers
  • stickers
  • juice boxes
  • glow sticks

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

School Picture Day

Today is picture day at school for my youngest kids. Also known as the day that mom and dad shell out big bucks for mug shots. That was the last few batches looked like - Jr. facing straight into the camera with a blank expression against a lovely bright rainbow background.

It reminds me very much of the elementary school photos of yore. Mom would get my brother and I all cleaned up. She would have my hair done just right, have my brother's red curls tamed as well as she could. We wore uniforms back then, so what could go wrong?

Well, let's see. There was the photo of me with my hair all sticking up on end, the tidy ponytail from that morning a sideways shrub on the side of my head. I had pulled my sweater off over my head. Who has time for zippers when you're six? Then there's the year I fell on the playground and had a nice fat lip for my photo. That was a keeper.

But the masterpiece belongs to my brother. I wish I had a copy to show you. I think it was his first grade photo. His hair is a mess, the collar of his uniform shirt is all twisted and sticking up on one side. He has chocolate milk all over his mouth and spilled down the front of his shirt. To finish the effect, he has a glazed duh look on his face. Best. Photo. Ever.

In the high school it's a different story. Those photos all turn out lovely. How could they not with the touch-ups, and fancy backgrounds and soft focus. They are really good photos, and my oldest daughter is usually really happy with them. I don't know. I sort of miss the days when her school pictures had messy hair and toothless smiles.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Return of the BLOG

This morning my five year old came to me, wide eyed, after her ten year old brother told her about the scary movie he watched last night.

"Really! What was it?" I asked.

She wiggled her fingers and said in her spookiest voice: "The Blog."*


After some technical difficulties, I'm finally back and better than ever. Okay, that last part is a fib. I'm actually less than ever. Let me explain.

When this blog was first conceived, there were three Momsters coming up with the ideas and stories. By the time the blog went live, we were down to two. Now, there is one lonely Momster holding down the fort. That would be me. So while I am hoping to post on a regular basis, it may not be as regular as it once was. And no more procrastinating.

The return of the Momster Blog comes at a good time. The best time of year. Autumn. Halloween. Apples and pumpkin spice. All the good stuff. I'm not generally a crafty person, but I've got some cute Halloween ideas to share. I'll get on that.

Right after my coffee.

* We watched the 1958 version of The Blob with our son. A good movie for older kids who want to be a little scared, but not too much. Although, I think The Blog has some frightening possibilities as well.