Halloween has become a month-long celebration in our house (partly because it seems to take that long just to locate, unpack and put up all the varied decorations and do-dads). We've always been fans of the holiday and holidays in general and are always on the lookout for new, fun (and best-of-all inexpensive!!!) ways to celebrate, decorate or both! With our girls in preschool now (and desperately eager to help with every thing), it was important we find as many kid-friendly activities and crafts we could this year.
Enter the Halloween Jack-Egg-Lantern.
We're surely not the first to think of this when we saw all those egg coloring kits go on sale last spring. Our twins had such a great time decorating eggs this year -- and eating the hardboiled goodness! -- I nabbed a couple extra packs from the clearance bins to use at upcoming off-season events.
With two girls and four fast hands to keep busy, one orange packet of dye was not going to be enough. So to keep four hands busy and keep two imaginations working, we combined the red, yellow and pink colorings to make multiple shades of "pumpkin." I think next time a drop or two of purple would also make a deeper color. Green and purple are great Halloween colors anyway, and we could have done more to make Goblin or Frankenstein eggs or Purple Monster eggs... Okay, all the better for next time. This time, we focused on the pumpkin. Some turned out more pinky-orange, a few more yellowy-orange, but overall we got a good blend and loved the results!
Some turned out more pinky-orange, a few more yellowy-orange, but overall we got a good blend. For special egg-fects, we experimented with the usual techniques like mulit-color dipping and striping our "pumpkin" eggs with white, clear, and black crayons to add dimension and texture. Looking back, red or dark orange crayon might do even better, especially pre-heated to give the lines more solid consistency.
Our most vivid Jack-Egg-Lantern faces were achieved with a Sharpie, though the black crayon also turned out well. Maybe next time we'll go with yellow wax for the faces and a deep orange for the dye to create that lit-from-within illusion.
I think the most important part of this trial egg run is that it's a simple craft with a-typically healthy and edible results that offered great opportunities for a lot of peripheral fun, like practicing our scary faces (see below). Have a spook-tacular Halloween!