Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Halloween Family Traditions...Repost!

Halloween Family Traditions 
I'm updating this post from September 2011

Where did your Halloween family traditions start?  When I was a little girl we lived in Alpine, Utah.  The old school...which was pretty creepy and had only four classrooms and a rickety fire escape...also had a gymnasium next door.  My fondest Halloween memories from that time are of the school's carnival and spook alley in that old gym.  The whole town turned out for the pond, pop bottle ring toss, bean bag games.  Afterward we did a little trick or treating, which I did with my eyes shut...because people in costumes are scary!  I wish I had a picture or two from back then.
The Old Alpine School
Did you ever see the movie "Lady in White?"
This is one of my favorite Halloween movies.  The little boy on the cover has been locked in the school and is hiding in the cloak room...what happens next is spooky fun! The old Alpine School had cloak rooms like this.  The time period of the movie is my's like watching your Halloween memories come to life...if you were locked in the school after the class party!
Halloween Class Party...not mine, though!
When we moved to American Fork, I was in third grade.  My mom was in PTA, so she helped out with the Harrington School carnival.  Spook alley mostly...grape eyeballs and spaghetti gutts.  The classics!   My favorite part of the carnival was the sloppy joes and doughnuts.  Today, they are still the perfect Halloween foods.

We were too broke to buy costumes, so we had to use our imaginations and whatever we could dig up out of an old box in the basement, but I think we came up with some pretty good ideas.  Still, it was annoying to be dressed as the world's scariest witch and then have to wear a coat!
Lovely store-bought!

Devey Family Trick or Treats
Like I was saying, we didn't have a lot of money, so we couldn't afford to give away full-size candy bars like many of our neighbors.  So we improvised.  With a little creativity, we made some of the most popular treats on the block.  Our two favorites were treat bags filled with candied popcorn and Tootsie Pop Ghosties.

One Saturday I made a huge batch of candied popcorn...for demonstration purposes.
My recipe card is below...still written in my high school handwriting.
(I made recipe cards for my "hope chest")

"Karen Lundell's Candied Popcorn"
Also known as "Granny Goose Popcorn."
  It was colored bright red and was sold in bags in the Potato Chip aisle. 
I can still taste that red dye they later banned.

3/4 Cup Milk
2 Tablespoons Butter
2 Cups Sugar
1 Tsp. Vanilla
Food Coloring

Cook to a softball stage.  Pour over a dishpan (?) full of popcorn and stir until all the popcorn is coated and becomes sugary. Note:  I use 4 to 5 bags of microwave popcorn.  The buttered variety makes it even yummier.

My collection of little treat bags.

My favorite bag from childhood immortalized on a tee-shirt.
My "Halloween Costume."

Some bags I stuff with batting and use for ornaments.

Best filled with popcorn as Nature intended.

The Tootsie Pop Ghosties I was telling you about.
Suckers, cocktail napkins, ribbon and a marker.  Easy Peasy! I decided to give these as treats this year...2011...but I'm getting them done in advance. Do you ever have that nightmare that it's 5 p.m. on Halloween and you haven't bought the candy yet? Nowadays, they put the candy out so early, I buy it three or four times!

Simple Halloween Candle Jar
All you need is a pint canning jar, a pumpkin scented candle from Walmart and some candy corns.

Set the candle in the jar and surround with candy corn.
Tie on a fun tag with jute twine.
Wa La!

Hope you enjoyed this blast from my Halloween past!

Some Fun Treat Bag Graphics...




Cheryl said...

I always loved getting my candy in a little bag--- made it that much more special! Oh.. and the sucker ghosts, oh happy memories lol
big hugs!

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

Thanks for sharing all of the wonderful graphics! I enjoyed the stories, too. We sure had fun on Halloween when we were kids! Even our mother's dressed up to take us trick or treating!

Lynn said...

LOve all of your Halloween crafts and memories! Have a wonderful weekend!

Musings from Kim K. said...

Love the trip down memory lane. Such fun memories. One of your Halloween treat bags is currently featured on my latest blog post. Yippee for Halloween.

Jann Olson said...

Your childhood memories are so similar to mine Shirley. Loved the school carnivals! Not quite the same anymore. I remember the graphics on so many of those treat bags.

~Damita's Pretty Wrap~ said...

How fun Shirley!! Love all those sweet memories! We made those ghosts out of suckers too! Love the Halloween Treat bags and your popcorn looks very yummy!! Thank for sharing the recipe and graphics!! Happy day to you! xo Holly

vintage grey said...

A wonderful Halloween tradition post!! I love all the vintage bags and your recipe!! So neat!! xo Heather

Patti M said...

Shirley what fun halloween beauties. I love that movie...It's been so long since I've thought about it. I think we used to have it on a VCR tape! LOL! (((hugs)))patti m

Little Susie Home Maker said...

Very cute post!! I remember making candied popcorn! I have to make some for the kids soon. this looks like a great recipe, and I will surely try it out. Thanks so much for all the wonderful eye Halloween candy, lol