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Posted in: CoronavirusOpinion

Keep your little witches and wizards safe this Halloween

Arya’s Halloween party. Image: Quacktrack

The day is here, when children dress up as witches, ghosts, and devils carrying fearsome faces, with teeth out, forehead blackened with blood oozing from a deep wound, wander around turning fear and death into entertainment.

This year has already been spooky enough with the dreaded Covid killing thousands and throwing millions into unemployment and now people are getting ready to celebrate Halloween which is having fun with death and fear.

Halloween may still be a good way to release that fear by doing something exciting making it a night full of laughter, fun, and mystery.

But how do we do that when there are enough rules and protocols already in place? Not celebrating is a great option to be safe, but if you still want to, then all necessary precautions should be followed.

Tips for a Safe Halloween

Image: Quacktrack

A safe Halloween celebration is possible by taking some basic precautions. Here are some tips-

  • Limit hand to hand contact with people.
  • Wear a cloth mask to suit your costume or a medical-grade mask. Make sure you don’t wear a mask inside your costume as it can make it difficult to breathe.
  • Do not touch any unwrapped treats.
  • Avoid coming into direct contact with other treat-or-trickers in the neighborhood.
  • Stay away from anyone coughing even if they are wearing a mask.
  • Don’t let anyone including adults come close. Keep six feet distance from all.
  • Carry hand sanitizer that has at least 60% alcohol content and use it every time you touch anything.
  • If you are handing out anything make sure they are wrapped and clean.
  • When you are trick-or-treating, drop off the goodie bag outside your friend’s or neighbors’ house and avoid physical contact.
  • While making the goodie-bags/trick-or-treat baskets, make sure you wash your hands with soap properly before and after.
  • When you leave treats for kids, leave them in a tray and not in a bowl.
  • Maintain distance even if you are celebrating with close friends and family members.

Decorations for Halloween

Jack-o-lantern

Pixabay

Decorate the rooms with Jack-o’-lanterns made from pumpkins, using a pumpkin carving kit. Make tiny incisions for eyes, nose, and mouth, and place a lit candle inside.

Put the jack-o-lanterns on tables and corners.

If you have a lawn, throw some skulls around and have some tombstones.

If you have some plants or trees cover them with spider webs and bats. You can cut out bats using black chart paper.

Have a skeleton dressed up in black or white cloth.

A skull and crossbones placed at the entrance of the house. Make sure the rooms are dark with light coming only from the eyes of the jack-o-lanterns.

Hang cutouts of pumpkins, black cats, witches, wizards, spiders, etc.

You can have a scarecrow right in the middle.

Have some blue, green and black lights and some scary music.

You can use some pillows and a white bedsheet and some chains to create a ‘mummy’.

Spooky Halloween cakes and cupcakes.

halloween cake

Source: Quacktrack

It is time to indulge in spooky cakes and treats to keep the spirit of Halloween alive. Cakes with spiders, beetles, black cats, wicked witches, ghostly ghouls, or cockroaches increase the ‘creep’ factor and make them look ‘spooktacular’.

EGGS HALLOWEEN

Source: Quacktrack

Do whatever you want, make it look however grotesque, it is still a cake and will taste great. Given the Covid 19 restrictions, it is great to make the cakes and cupcakes at home. Doing some baking with the kids can be an excellent idea to spend this restricted Halloween. Using grapes as eyeballs, chili as lips, or cauliflower as the brain is fun.

Make sure you keep the sugar low as excess sugar can lower the immune response in children. When the kids go trick-and-treating ensure the kids don’t eat all the candy.

If you are buying the candy avoid the ones with high fructose corn syrup, and alternative sweeteners.

How to shop for Halloween?

Image: Quacktrack

Why spend on costumes which you may wear only on one day in the entire year? Costumes can cost a lot and a smart way would be to DIY the costumes. Here is a great site that shows you how.

If you wish to try something creative use some face makeup and some glitter to make breathtaking designs.

If you are in a mood to shop then opt to shop online through genuine websites. Here are some tips.

Go to only a secure website that starts with ‘https’ and has a padlock icon and is encrypted with the SSL / TLS protocol. Check out the contact information and see if it has a proper address and phone number.

Google the name of the website to see if there have been any complaints in the past. Go for those which have good reviews.

Shop only with a credit card as the credit card has some advantages and is easier to dispute a fraudulent charge when buying online. Also, most credit cards come with a zero-fraud liability, and is easier for getting refunds.

Games you can play on Halloween

BOWLS

Place four bowls – one filled with clear water, one with red-colored water, a third with vinegar, and a fourth with blue colored water. Place them all in line on the table. The player is blindfolded, turned about three times, and then led to the table. A hand is put out and a prediction is made based on the bowl touched. Clear Water indicate a happy, peaceful life; red promises a rich, interesting life, vinegar promises a life with a mix of struggle and success; an empty bowl is a symbol of exciting bachelor life.

Cat Scratch

The player lies down with their head on your lap. You recite a poem while massaging the player’s temples. The poem goes like this…

There once was an old lady who owned a cat.
The cat was very nice.
It meowed and purred.
One day, the cat got hit by a car and died.
Cat Scratch, Cat Scratch, Cat Scratch.

The old lady got a new cat.
The cat was very mean.
It hissed and clawed.
Cat Scratch, Cat Scratch, Cat Scratch.

One day, the cat got hit by a car and died.
The old lady decided not to get any more cats.
Cat Scratch, Cat Scratch, Cat Scratch.

After reciting the poem the player will reveal their back to find a scar, which looks like a catscratch. Nobody really knows how it happens. But actually, the scars are simply marks from lying on the floor.

Alphabet Game

Cut the alphabet from newspaper and sprinkle on the surface of the water; letters floating may spell or suggest the name of future husband or wife.

Try Not to Laugh challenge

A laughable experiment consists of filling the mouth with water and walking around the house. The challenge is to try and make him laugh.

Bloody Mary

Get yourself a flashlight, go to a dark bathroom and say bloody mary three times in front of the mirror. And voila you have an evil vengeful spirit in your bathroom. Now if you see anything in the mirror, you are probably experiencing pareidolia ( due to the bad lighting and the tense situation, your brain tricks you into seeing things different from reality)

What else can you do to celebrate Halloween?

Here are some great alternative options to celebrate safely.

  • You could listen to a ghost story or play a scary movie on TV.
  • Instead of trick-or-treating, plan a drive-through a Halloween event.
  • You could choose to not celebrate the usual way and do some home activities such as decorating your home.
  • You could try this app called Junket that gives you a guided ghost tour or ghostflix for paid on-demand tours.

Also read: Safety tips to celebrate a spooky Halloween amid Covid-19

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