Friday, October 28, 2011

Halloween Snacks with Spiders!

Every year since my daughter Molly(4) was born, I've had a Halloween Party for her. The first year she was only seven months but I wanted it to be an annual thing so we started out with a "Mummy and Me Party" and made it mostly for the moms. Every year has had a different theme, including "Little Monsters" and "Candy Corn - Yum!" When planning any party, it is so much easier to pull everything together when you have a central theme!

This year's theme was chosen by the hostess herself (Molly!) which was spiders. Just like me, Molly is totally into spooky things and loves Halloween, so I was only a little surprised when she requested such a creepy theme. I was more surprised when she requested a fake spider web right above her bed!!

We had fun decorating the house with fake spider webs and spiders everywhere! My favorite places are in the bathroom where we covered all of the mirrors, and a complete wall in the living room which I used as a backdrop for photos at the party. Mostly I use existing anchors to create the webs, including picture frames, nails and furniture. Whenever I needed a little extra something, though, I just used a clear thumb tack and tried to stick it in an inconspicuous spot or a smaller hole that was already in the wall. Since most packs of fake spider webs don't come with enough spiders, we used black spider rings and I just snipped off the ring part with scissors. Molly did a great job putting on the spiders; for the highest ones she simply tossed them up and they stuck!

As a special spidery treat we made spider cookies! We started with layered chocolate cookies, such as Oreos and twisted them apart. I added extra chocolate frosting on one side, as Molly pressed on four strips of licorice (we used Twizzlers Pull & Peel). When the licorice hangs over each side, it becomes eight spider legs! I replaced the top part of the cookie, then attached two candies, like M&M's, with white frosting for eyes. This was such a fun project to make and delicious to eat!

We also had a second cookie at the party: my mom's famous sugar cookies in the shape of spider webs! She happens to have a spider web cookie cutter... I think between the two of us we literally have at least 250 cookie cutters! She frosted each cookie black so Molly and I could pipe on some spider webs (and other designs, thanks to Molly's creativity) with sparkly frosting I found in the baking aisle at Walmart. The tubes of sparkly frosting didn't last very long - one tube frosted only six cookies - so I'd recommend buying a couple packs. The sparkle was worth the price, though - about $2.80 for a pack of 4.

For a salty snack I served tortilla chips and homemade guacamole. I put the guacamole in a large orange bowl and piped on sour cream in the shape of a large spider web to keep with our theme. To pipe on the sour cream, simply spoon some into a plastic baggie and snip a corner off to act as a pastry bag.

Finally, I served a very simple yet yummy punch which consisted of green Hawaiian Punch mixed with Sprite. I sprinkled some black spider rings in the punch bowl for effect and also had made ice cubes with spider rings inside of them! Making those ice cubes was a very fun and easy project to do with Molly a couple days before the party.

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