Halloween is right around the corner, and you know what that means? It’s time to start buying candy for the neighborhood’s trick or treaters! And don’t forget the costumes! You’ll need to pick something that will scare the living daylights out of your friends and family.
But whether you choose to lit a few pumpkins, hang a few skeletons in your backyard, or throw a party for your kids, there’s one thing we can all agree with: 2020 is already pretty freaking weird as it is. Let’s be honest!
It doesn’t matter if you decide to stay at home this year. There are tons of ways to celebrate this spooktacular night from the comfort of your own home!
Have a Scavenger Hunt
Start by hiding Halloween treats and items like plastic vampire fangs, candy bars, or mini-pumpkins. You can print out photos of iconic scary movie characters and hide them around the house. Then write or print out a list of the photos or cardboard cutouts of bats and witch hats.
Make sure to include a brief clue that will help your family members find these objects as they scavenge around the house.
Go on a Pretend Home Ghost Tour
Create your own pretend ghost tour right at home. Have someone take turns taking over the story. For example, one person could talk about the previous owners who mysteriously vanished, but whose ghosts haunt the basement or the attic.
Have everyone bring a digital camera or activate the voice recording app on their phone. Who knows? Maybe you really do have a ghost in your home!
Dress Up Anyway
Look! You don’t have to leave the house, but you’re not going to pass this holiday by not dressing up. There are plenty of costume stores that offer a variety of outfits out there. You can Google a few store locations to rent a costume, or you can go the easy route and order one on Amazon.
And if you’re feeling creative, you can go online and look for a tutorial on how to make your own costume at home. Even if you don’t leave the house, it’ll make a great Instagram moment.
Learn More About Halloween
Have you ever wondered where Halloween comes from? It turns out that there’s a great deal of history behind this fun holiday. The History Channel airs “The Haunted History of Halloween” during the season, but you can probably Wikipedia “Halloween” and educate yourself on the origins of Halloween. Spoiler alert! It’s not all about candy and kids in costumes!
Paint Your Nails
Buy some nail polish that’s Halloween inspired and have a fun spooky nail painting session. The most obvious color of course is red because it’s the color of blood. But you can also go for black or green, orange or silver.
Just make sure to paint your nails early in the day so they’ll look nice and creepy by the time you’re ready to pass out candy at night.
Do a Horror Movie Marathon
If you’re going to celebrate Halloween, then do it right. Grab a couple of DVDs or go on your favorite streaming site and look up scary movies. If you’re feeling stumped, go with classic movies like “A Nightmare on Elm Street,” “The Addams Family” and “Hokus Pokus”.
These scary movie franchises have tons of sequels which means hours of entertainment for you.
Pass Out Candy, of Course!
Choosing to stay at home on Halloween doesn’t mean that you can’t be neighborly and pass out candy when the kids come knocking on your door at night. Not only are you putting a smile on children’s faces, but you’re also getting the chance to show off your cool costume.
Dress Your Pet Up for Halloween
If you’re an animal lover and are tired of making your pet feel left out on Halloween, then don’t. Make them a costume, preferably one that matches your costume. Say for example you dress up as the Stay-Puft Marshmallow Man from “Ghostbusters.” You’re going to need someone to fight off.
So why not design a Ghostbuster outfit that your dog can fit into. Don’t forget to make the proton packs, but don’t make it too heavy. Remember, they’re just dogs and cats, not real people.
Play Some Scary Video Games
There are tons of scary video games out on the market like “Until Dawn,” “F.E.A.R.,” or even “Silent Hill.” And if you’re feeling bold enough, then you can head off and take out hordes of zombies on “Resident Evil.” There’s a version of this game in just about every console both past and present. So embrace your inner hero and take some zombies out.
Throw a Halloween Dance Party
Play some music in your front yard and invite some kids to dance to Halloween songs like Thriller or the Monster Mash. If you don’t really feel like shaking your hips with a bunch of kids then invite your friends or family and throw a dance party at home. That way you can all learn how to dance to Thriller without any of the neighbors judging you.
Have a Karaoke Party
Throw a karaoke party at home. All you really need is a karaoke machine, which you can order from Amazon well in advance. If you’re on a budget, you can also find karaoke videos on YouTube.
Then hook up your computer to your TV with an HDMI cable so everyone can sing along to the lyrics on the screen.
Play the Elsa Drinking Game
The Elsa Drinking game is a really cool drinking game for everyone in the family. Here’s how it works. Every time a trick or treater knocks on your door dressed as Elsa, you drink a shot of whatever you prefer, whether it’s an adult drink for you or an alcohol-free soda or mix for the little ones.
Have a Pretend Seance
Time to put your acting skills to the test. Find a scarf and a whimsical outfit to pretend you’re a psychic and do a family-friendly seance at home. Get the whole family together in the living room, light a couple of candles and some incense or sage, and hold hands.
Then let your pretend-psychic abilities work its magic. Who knows? You might end up communicating with someone from the other side, like an old pet, or Lady Di.
Throw an At-Home Halloween Party
Of course, you’ll have to dress up for a Halloween party, but there’s more to it than that. You’ll have to create meals and desserts that are Halloween themed. If you’re not sure how to go about doing them, there are plenty of YouTube videos and DIY sites that can point you in the right direction.
And remember that food coloring can turn even the most appetizing dishes into some spook-tacular!
Bake a Jack O’Lantern Cake
Baking a Halloween Cake isn’t really that difficult. All you have to do is know how to make a decent cake. If you’re not sure, you can look up recipes online on how to make a basic vanilla cake.
The fun part comes afterwards. Once the cake has cooled you can buy or make orange icing using food coloring to turn your cake orange. Then you can use black icing to outline the eyes, the nose and the mouth of a Jack O’Lantern. And if you’re feeling extra adventurous, you could try baking a jaw-dropping cake shaped like a Jack O’Lantern. Your family will thank you for it!
Play a Halloween Board Game
Board games are tons of fun and can help pass the time while you wait for the food to finish cooking or arriving if you ordered some. Go on AreYouGame.com and look for Halloween themed games like Zombie-opoly or buy a Ouija Board and see if you can commune with the dead.
Scaring trick-or-treaters? It’s practically a Halloween tradition, but make sure it’s done tastefully. Make a fake coffin, dress up as Dracula and then pop out when the kids come knocking on your door or ringing your doorbell. You can also dress up as a ghoulish monster, hide behind the bushes, and then jump out and scare the living daylights out of kids.
Decorate Your House
Make sure you’re not the only one that’s dressing up on Halloween. Dress your house up, or in this case, decorate it. Add some spider webs, buy some Styrofoam gravestones and hang a couple of bats on your front porch.
You can also buy orange string s of light and window clings to finish off your spooky look. And if you want to make things even more spoo-tacular, add some spooky music, too.
Carve a Pumpkin
Halloween isn’t really Halloween until you’ve carved a pumpkin. If you’re not sure how to carve one, there are tons of YouTube videos that will show you how. You can either make the traditional Jack O’Lantern or get artistic and use carving stencils to carve out anything you want.
And don’t forget to add a candle inside so your pumpkin will look extra scary.
Tell Scary Ghost Stories
There’s nothing creepier than sitting in front of the fireplace with the lights off and reading or sharing scary ghost stories. These tales don’t have to be based off of anything. You can actually make one up out of the blue just as long as it’s scary.
If you’re out of ideas, you can go online and Google a couple of scary stories.
Play a Halloween Prank
A Halloween prank never hurt anyone and they can be a lot of fun, too. So, try doing something like cutting a hole in in the bottom of a bowl. Then fill it with candy.
When someone tries to stick their hand in the bowl to get some candy, grab their hand. You can also buy an animated motion-sensing hand on Amazon.
Create a Halloween Candy Wreath
We know! We know! Wreaths are synonymous with Christmas. But think outside the box and create a Halloween candy wreath. All you have to do is buy a wreath form at an arts and crafts store.
Then use a glue gun to glue a bunch of candy on the wreath. Once it’s dry, hang it up on your front door.
Make Your Dinner Table Spookier
Give your dinner table a haunting makeover. It’s very simple. Gather a bunch of leaves, paint them white, and add two dots for the eyes.
Once they dry you can spread them across the table and voila! Just like that, you have ghosts haunting your dinner table.
Bob for Apples
Bobbing for apples has been a Halloween activity at many parties for years. All you need is a tub with water and of course, apples. Then have the entire family take turns trying to bob for apples.
Whoever gets the most, gets to pick the scary movies for the night.
Leave Creepy Message on the Bathroom Mirror
This one’s actually a lot of fun. Leave a creepy message on the bathroom mirror by tracing the message with your finger. The spooky message will remain invisible until someone else in the house takes a shower.
When the steam rises, the message will be revealed and hopefully scare the heck out of them. Not sure what to write? Try “Boo.” It’s a classic.
Order Blood-Red Bath Bombs
Go online and look for a bath bomb that turns the water red. Then take a dip inside, grab your phone and take a selfie. But make sure to add a scary caption that will chill your followers to the bones like, “bathing in the blood of my enemies” or a clever play on words.
Do Chores, Halloween Style
Play the “Halloween” movie theme song in the background and go about your daily house cleaning tasks. This will make your mundane activity a little creepier because the song will trick your brain into thinking something sinister is about to happen to you.
Have a Comedy-Horror Marathon
There are tons of comedy horror films out there to choose for your marathon that will make you laugh and scream all at the same time. There’s “Dracula, Dead and Loving It,” and the first four “Scary Movie” films. If you haven’t seen any of the iconic “Scary Movie” films, then make sure to skip the fifth one.
That one was really bad.
Read a Horror Novel
Imagine you’re alone in bed. The only light source you have is the lamp on your night table. The rest of the house is cold and dark.
The wind is howling outside your window. Now all you need is a good horror novel to chill you to the bones like Anne Rice’s “Interview With the Vampire” or “Savaging the Dark” by Christopher Conlon.
Write a Scary Story
Let Halloween inspire you to write a scary story. Who knows? You might have it in you to write a novel. But don’t get stuck on all the grammar rules and things like that.
Just enjoy it. Don’t overthink it. Let your fingertips take you on a chilling adventure.
Work Out to a Spooky Playlist
Make a spooky playlist of some of the scariest songs in television and movie history and play it while you’re at home doing some push-ups, pull-ups, running on a treadmill or riding a stationary bike. You’ll feel like you’re working out to become the next Rick Grimes from “The Walking Dead” or “Buffy the Vampire Slayer.”
Play Date, Marry, Kill a Favorite Horror Movie Villain
You’re probably familiar with a variation of this game. But this one’s a clean version that you can play with the whole family. In this game, you will take turns asking each other which horror movie villain would you date, marry or kill.
Put everyone on the spot by asking them why they chose those answers.
Shoot a “Found-Footage” Horror Flick
Grab your phone and shoot a found-footage style horror movie at home. Remember, it doesn’t have to be Hollywood quality. Think of it as “The Blair Witch Project” or “Paranormal Activity.” Have someone in the family open cabinet doors and shelves or rattle a few chains to make the film more spine tingling.
Then share it on social media and see what others think, or you can send it to friends and family and see if they think it’s real.
Create a Zombie Apocalypse Survival Plan
Well, we know that zombies aren’t real, but it’s still kind of cool to play pretend for a moment. So for Halloween, spend an hour or two coming up with a zombie apocalypse survival plan in case, you know, the dead start to rise from their graves.
Watch a Supernatural Marathon
“Supernatural” is a long running TV series about two brothers, Sam and Dean Winchester, who face off against other worldly creatures. The show’s been on the air for 15 seasons, so you’ve got plenty of episodes to Netflix and chill with. But you might want to bring a change of underwear because some episodes are really scary.
And while you’re at it, grab some tissues too because other episodes are heartbreakingly sad.
Do a Horror Themed Photo Shoot
There are tons of apps that offer horror filters like Snapchat. Facebook has them too. So for Halloween, you don’t have to buy any scary makeup or even a mask.
These filter apps will do the work for you. You might turn into a vampire, a demon, a witch or a Frankenstein monster. The possibilities are seemingly endless.
Start Doing Your Christmas Shopping
We know! It’s Halloween and you haven’t even bought the turkey for Thanksgiving yet. But if you’re not really into Halloween, then use this downtime to make a list of all the people you’re going to buy presents for this Christmas and then go on Amazon and do some virtual shopping so you can get that out of the way.
Watch Ghost Hunters on SyFy
There’s nothing more synonymous with Halloween than ghosts. Alright, maybe witches and vampires, but you get the point. So, we recommend you watch “Ghost Hunters,” a reality series on SyFy that follows supposed real-life ghost hunters on a quest to capture legitimate evidence of ghosts on camera.
While some of the episodes will have you rolling your eyes in disbelief, others will make you question if some properties really are haunted.
Prepare for Thanksgiving
If you have some downtime until the trick-or-treaters come knocking on your door then start preparing for Thanksgiving. You can start looking up recipes like new ways to make stuffing, gravy or pumpkin pie. Then make a grocery list of things to buy, and even sending invites.
This might sound premature, but this will give your family members and friends time to figure out if they can make it to your house for Thanksgiving or not.
Go to Sleep Early
This may sound like one of the lamest things you can do on Halloween, but if you’re not in the mood to celebrate it, then don’t. No judgment here. Just make sure to turn off the porch light so you don’t get any trick-or-treaters knocking on your door and disrupting your beauty sleep.