Halloween, Pumpkins & Family Time

Fun Pumpkin Family Time

Halloween is a weird holiday. On one hand, I want to hide from anything that leads me in celebrating death with my kids. On the other hand: COSTUMES! CANDY! PEOPLE KNOCKING ON MY DOOR!

As a family, we’ve done almost everything imaginable on Halloween–dressed up and went to a church carnival, trick-or-treated and went to bed early with all the lights out. I don’t really have a firm grasp on what to do about such a day.

My favorite tradition (which, is it a tradition if you’ve only done it twice?) is to carve a pumpkin along with The Pumpkin Patch Parable by Liz Curtis Higgs.

The Pumpkin Patch Parable by Liz Curtis Higgs // Perfect family time for Halloween & Fall!

I am the true vine; my Father is the gardener. John 15:1

Pumpkin Patch Parable // fun Halloween family time!

He has taken our sins away from us as far as the east is from west. Psalm 103:12

Redeeming Halloween // a fun God-centered activity

God once said, “Let the light shine out of the darkness!” And this is the same God who made his light sine in our hearts. 2 Corinthians 4:6

I know it’s Halloween today, but you could still do this object lesson with your kids anytime this Fall. It’s such a beautiful picture of what God has done in our hearts and lives. Plus, it redeems what the world has taken for evil!

What are you doing for Halloween today? (If your kids are dressing up, I wanna know about their costume!)

ohamanda.com

Comments

  1. I guess I follow the “what you see depends on what you look for” or “ignorance is bliss” mentality or I’m just plain naive when it comes to Halloween – but we see it as a fun holiday to look forward to and to do something out of the normal routine.

    We love our annual traditions of visiting a pumpkin patch, carving pumpkins, eating pizza/watching “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown”, going trick-or-treating and handing out candy. Our daughters are 3 and 6 and they just love the excitement of dressing up (which they also do at random times of play) and the thrill of collecting sooooo much candy (which i then make disappear after a couple days!). I guess I never thought of it as “evil” (more just “spooky”) nor have I paid much attention to the origins of all hallow’s eve. Again, we just think of Halloween as a fun time to look forward to and a reason to do something out of the ordinary and excuse to get together with friends.

    Do we see lots of creepy stuff in neighborhood yards and in the stores? well yes. but we discuss it at an age-appropriate level.

    my 3yo is Cinderella (since we already owned that dress-up dress)
    my 6yo is a vampire — but she picked that outfit specifically b/c the dress was long (covering her toes = beautiful ball gown) and it had a big jewel on the front. she never asked for make-up or anything scary or vampire-y to go with it (she doesn’t really grasp the concept of vampires other than the Count in Sesame Street!!)

  2. I’m with you on this one. My parents were not Halloween celebrators so I only remember going out once (I was maybe 9 and I was a mouse. Grey footie jammies, dad’s grey belt as a tail and paper ears on a headband. The friend I went with had this amazing handmade dinosaur costume. Probably says something that I remember that.) I also remember some church party where I was Cheer Bear. I really don’t remember what they said to me about it and why I couldn’t go trick or treating.
    I think I intended to let my kids go trick or treating (I keep wanting to write tricker treating!) b/c I always felt left out of the dressing up and getting bags of candy. For the past few years we have taken our kids out just to one street where most homes participate. My kids seem to see it as a fun time to dress up and get free candy. It’s kind of funny though b/c even though we don’t play it up they talk about halloween all year long.
    As for tonight, I’m still not sure what we’ll be doing. My husband went through a season of God rooting stuff out of his heart at the beginning of the year and he felt that he didn’t want us to participate any more in halloween. (Or at least not in a way that promotes the evil not just the fun.) We might end up at a church trunk or treat tonight or we might not. If we do my 2.5 will be a monkey and I’ll probably have a 4.5 yr old ghost and a 6 yr old superhero or princess. What ever strikes her fancy.

    (Sorry, this got kind of long.)

    • :) I love long comments.

      I think it’s wise of you and your husband to constantly evaluate it. And really, I can’t get past Cheer Bear. I loved Cheer Bear when I was little. ;)

  3. I’ve struggled with Halloween, too. We will be going to an alternative event at a local church. Both my boys are dressing up as Army soldiers. Daddy is in the Army so I think it’s nice they have chosen these costumes this year. By the way, I love the Pumpkin Parable and I’m disappointed that I forgot about it and they just carved pumpkins for the first time earlier today. I guess we can talk about it after the fact. Thanks for bringing it to my remembrance.

  4. Our church has a scouting type club. My daughter’s club was doing a fall festival. There was games and candy. And each kid was suppose to dress up as a Bible character. I think it’s a great alternative. I haven’t fully made up my mind about trick or treating being right or wrong. I did it a few times as a kid, but mostly my church scouting club went out collecting canned food that we packed into special baskets and delivered around Thanksgiving for the needy families.

  5. Our small group friends started a neighborhood street party for Halloween in their driveway last year. We all have a blast eating hot dogs & other treats in their driveway and caravanning (is that a word?) with some other families around the block to trick-or-treat.

    Oh & I had a Hot Wheels driver & a Fairy (the one that gives the other fairies their colors) this year.

    • I so love that idea, Brandi. I told Les I wanted to do a Halloween party this year (that was like last week, when I would have had a whole 4 days to plan and execute it) where we’d have a photo booth for people to take pics of their costumes. Wouldn’t that be cool?!

      a

  6. These pictures are BEAUTIFUL, and I’m blessed beyond measure to know that my book has become part of your family’s autumn tradition (two years in a row definitely qualifies!). THANKS so much, Amanda!

    • Oh, my goodness! Thank YOU, Liz! The Pumpkin Patch Parable and the Pine Tree Parable are two of my all-time favorite books. They are examples of exactly what I want for my kids–to see God in everywhere at every time. THANK YOU for commenting, too. I’m honored! :)

      a

  7. We do different things each year (especially since we move so much being military). We’ve done church fall festivals, trunk or treats, etc. And just plain old trick or treating. We moved from KY, and I love what we did there. Our city of St. Matthews did a parade through our neighborhood and ended at a house that would do costume contests for all the age levels before trick of treating started in our neighborhood. They have done this for more than 50 years I think. Pretty cool tradition. We have taught our children that it is just a fun holiday to dress up, but not something that celebrates death or evil. I will have to check out that book you read to your kids. It looks good.

    This year (we don’t live in KY anymore), we went to Chipolte for $2 Booritos (get it?) for wearing our costumes before going trick-or-treating in our neighborhood. We also took a picture of our son at Chipotle and entered him into their contest for the Boo-tiful costume contest. Here is a link if you want to vote. You can vote 1 per day until the 6th ;)

    https://boorito.votigo.com/contests/showentry/1347775/7791?fbuserrequest=true&v=13&fb_action_ids=10151120951893596&fb_action_types=og.likes&fb_ref=top_left&fb_source=aggregation&fb_aggregation_id=288381481237582

    We did a homemade Lego costume that I’ve been wanting to make since last Halloween. Here is a link to my blog, if you want to read more about it as well.

    http://www.lifesacraft.com/lego-landon-is-boo-tiful/ ~Feel free to “like” ~I need all the help I can get with my blog :P

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