Boo Your Kids with a Pumpkin Egg Hunt!

Buckets of Halloween Hugs
My kids absolutely love doing egg hunts in the spring time and they are also crazy about Halloween activities. This year I decided to combine the two and they had a blast!

I have a bin full of plastic eggs that sits in the attic for most of the year. This week I got it down and pulled out all the orange eggs (other colors will work too if you don’t have enough orange). If you don’t have a stash of plastic eggs handy, don’t worry. You can get super cute, already-filled jack-o-lanterns on Amazon.

Halloween Easter Eggs
I filled the eggs and jack-o-lanterns with candy and treats like Halloween stickers, erasers, spider rings and even little glow-in-the-dark aliens then hid them around the yard. The kids grabbed their Halloween pails and they were off to see who could collect the most!

After they had found every one they settled down to go through their loot. A short time later they refilled all the eggs/pumpkins (with the exception of a few pieces of candy and favored toys) and pleaded with me to hide them all again!

Decorating Halloween Eggs
After a few times through the cycle of hide-find-open-refill-repeat, I gave them each a sharpie and told them to have fun decorating the eggs. Jack-o-lantern faces, spiders, vampires and ghosts are just a few of the things they decided to draw! For those of you with artists who insist on perfection, we found out that a little rubbing alcohol on a Q-tip works as a great eraser!

Halloween Egg Hunt Treasure
We had so much fun with this activity that we’ve decided to surprise our friends with it this weekend and after school next week! We usually Boo our friends (go here if you don’t know about this fun “reverse” trick-or-treat activity), but this year they are going to have to search their yards and porches for their treats!

Halloween Egg on Fence

DIY Simple Recipe for Snack Mix and Free Printable Tag

Hello again!  I know my dear friend Pranika is our food guru on Big Kid Small City but this time of year crafting and baking kind of merge for me so I’m bringing to you a simple recipe for a snack mix I created as well as a free printable tag that you can use to package all your goodies!  So grab a few simple ingredients and let’s get making!


Fall Snack Mix Supplies

Here is what you will need:

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Pull Out the Advent Calendars – Our Favorites: Lego, Chocolate and Homemade

The big kids at BigKidSmallCity love Advent Calendars.  So much so that come December 1st, we might need to wake up 30 minutes early just to get to school on time.

Our very favorite calendar is the LEGO City Advent Calendar and it is the most expensive. Ranging from $27.00 to $35.00, I’m thankful my kids are still willing to share one calendar each year. It won’t be long until Brooke is insisting on the LEGO Friends Advent Calendar and James wants his very own LEGO Fireman Advent Calendar.  If you are looking for a Lego Calendar, keep checking and and don’t pay more than about $35.00.

The kids also insist on the chocolate Advent Calendar. These can be found dollar store, Walmart and Target. My kids are happy with the $1 versions, so I’m happy to buy multiples of this one!

Finally, the kids like making their own Advent Chains each year.  We cut out strips of construction paper and label each with a number, 1 through 25.  We then loop them around the next and secure them with staples.

Each day in December the kids get to rip off one link of the chain.  Or if you are baby James, and you can get your little hands on it, you rip whatever you want, whenever you want, and eat the evidence.

So, what are your traditions for counting down the days until Christmas?


We’ve Been Jingled – How to Jingle & Where to Print the Paper

You may have “Been Boo-ed” in October… and now it’s time to have “Been Jingled” in December.

If your kids find a Christmas goodie on the doorstep, along with a poem and elf, you’ve Been Jingled.  If you want to pass it along, make your own goodie bag and leave it on your friend or neighbor’s doorstep.

If you want to start the chain yourself, just go HERE, print out the poem, fill a goodie bag and go.

Goodie bags can include anything you want.  We started the chain this year and we filled our bags with pencils, rulers, straws, an activity book and our very best friend got a cute Christmas hair bow.

My kids are young, so after selected the handful of friends to Jingle, I called the other moms so we could “surprise” them.  We jumped in the car, “sneaked” into our friends driveway, tiptoed to the front door, rang the bell, ran back to the car, “quickly” got into our carseats and drove away before anyone came to the door.  (I bet we looked really funny to the other mom watching us from the upstairs window!)

The kids giggled the entire time and love to surprise their friends.  Go HERE if you want to give it a try!

“What are you thankful for?” Wreath – Thanksgiving Craft for Kids

In the latest Family Fun Magazine, there is a great Thanksgiving wreath.  You take a Styrofoam wreath, wrap it with fabric or ribbon and have everyone add card stock leaves which say what they are thankful for.

We modified it a bit to fit the supplies we had on hand.  I cut out a cardboard “wreath”, wrapped it in ribbon and cut out construction paper leaves.  I left the started project on the kitchen table and the kids have been adding to it all week.  Each day that say, “Oh, I’m thankful for this… better get a leaf!”.

The craft has been so successful that I think I’ll get the actual supplies and take the project to Thanksgiving Dinner.  Go HERE to get instructions.

What Thanksgiving crafts do you have?

Unwrapping Christmas Books – One Per Day Until December 25

Last Christmas I saw that MoneySavingMom had the great idea of wrapping up Christmas books and letting the kids unwrap one each day until December 25.    This year I decided to try the same.

I’ve gathered up all Christmas books from my house and started wrapping them.  I plan to head to the library to check out some more.  (And I’ll be sure to unwrap, read and return the library books before they are due!)

I had planned to keep this a secret from my kids until December 1, but apparently I can’t get away with anything at my house.  Joe found the wrapped stack of books, was super excited about the plan and was determined to start reading books tonight.

Since I was hoping for excited kids and I want them to read as much as possible, I gave in and we’re starting Christmas early around here.  The kids unwrapped and read Firefighter’s Night Before Christmas tonight.

The kids did not care that they already owned the book and it was just wrapped up.  They were delighted to pick out the “gift” and unwrap it at bedtime.  I’m happy it has worked out… but I’ll need to get a dozen extra library books to last us until Christmas!

We’ve Been Boo-ed! Where to find the “Been Boo-ed” paper & How to “Boo” your friends!

The “Boo-ing” has started for 2012!  You might remember that we started “Boo-ing” our friends last Halloween.  Now I’m happy to let you know that We’ve Been Boo-ed for Halloween 2012!

When we came home from school, we had a surprise waiting for the kids on the porch.  Our friends had boo-ed us with a Haunted House Cookie Kit.  The paper, found HERE,  has a poem and told us to boo our friends within a day.

Fortunately we had our loot ready.  The kids gathered up the Halloween treasure of stickers, bracelets, hair ties and pencils and even ice trays!

Since my kids are ages 5, 3, and 1, I called ahead, just to be sure there were no bad surprises.  And so we’d have some extra time to drop off the packages before being caught.

We pulled up, the big kids giggled and ran like crazy.  They dropped off the packages, ran back, got into the car seats and we escaped undetected (although I suspect the other mom was watching the operation through her upstairs window).

My kids thought they were so clever to drop off the gift for their friends, and I have reports that their friends were delighted with the surprise.

We love Boo-ing our friends.  Give it a try this year!

Get Ready to “Boo” Your Friends – Check out

Last October we found candy on our doorstep and a note that said “You’ve Been Booed!”. (Go HERE for details.) This started a brand new tradition for our family.

Now that it’s almost October, we are getting ready to start Boo-ing our friends. We want to start early so the chain can reach everyone in our class.

Do you want to Boo your friends? Go HERE for instructions. You just print out THIS paper, fill a bag with treats, leave it on a doorstep and run. (Since my kids are little, I also called the other moms ahead of time so there were no bad surprises.)

We picked up a ton of goodies at the Dollar Store, but you can find them any where. It doesn’t matter what you give, so pick whatever you think is best.  It can be candy, toys, crafts, stickers, cookies, a pumpkin or anything at all.  Just be sure it’s safe and consider any serious food allergies.

Watch out neighbors… the booing is about to begin!

Remember We’ve Been Booed? Now We’ve Been Jingled!


Remember We’ve Been Booed? Well now We’ve Been Jingled! Actually, we haven’t been jingled, but we’ve been jingling our friends. I know it’s not even December yet, but we wanted to get the jingle chain going now so there was time for all of our school friends to participate.

Jingling is easy and fun. Just fill a bag with treats, games, or some wonderful “treasure”, leave it on your friend’s doorstep, knock on the door, and run! Include THIS print out so the next family knows what to do.


We filled our bags with the treasure we’ve collected over the last year. We included a couple of activity books, a bouncy ball and a Christmas craft that we picked up after the holiday last year. We also included Memory that we picked up for under $4 on Black Friday.


My son picked out a few friends to Jingle and we included enough loot for little brothers and sisters. I called the moms ahead of time so everything went smoothly with the pre-schoolers.

Brooke and Joe took the bags to the doorsteps, knocked, and ran back to the car. Brooke had to pick up every rock along the way, so it took a little time. Next we had to strap into the carseats, which takes extra long when you are so excited. Finally we were able to sneak away… and the kids were really excited that we did not get caught. 🙂

We’ve Been Jingled


My kids had a lot of fun Boo-ing their friends. It looks like we get to start Jingling soon. Go HERE to learn more about We’ve Been Jingled!