We threw a Halloween party this past weekend (early because of all the Fall Festivals and other parties going on the weekend prior to Halloween). I started decorating bit by bit the first weekend of October to enjoy all the decorations and to make sure I wasn't killing myself to get everything done last minute. My kids helped me decorate and besides the assistance, it made them realize the scary part of Halloween is only that way if they want it to be. By helping me put out all the creepy decor, they saw that the stuff wasn't real. They've really enjoyed being such a big part of the festivities and they aren't having nightmares.
Have you seen those fun candy serving bowls with the hands sticking out of them? Well, unless you wait until after Halloween when they go on clearance-they are not cheap. I had previously purchased a $2.00 mask, filled it with plastic grocery sacks, placed it in a large serving dish and added candy around it. Cheap, clever and creepy!
I tried BLOGHUNGRY'S spooktacular Bloody Finger Cookie recipe-they were easy and were a huge hit at the party!
I didn't want to spend all my budget on fake tombstones. I had some extra cement stepping stones and spray-painted them.
Scarecrows and dummies are another cheap and simple scare. I had a dollar store pumpkin for the scarecrow, dollar-store Friday the 13th-Jason mask, and raided my husband's closet. Both dummies were stuffed with plastic grocery sacks and cardboard.