For us, 2012 was nearly “The Year Without a Halloween.”
Here in the Northeast, October 31st was indeed scary…but not for the usual reasons. Instead of gangs of roving ghouls and goblins begging for candy, our neighborhood streets were filled with out-of-state crews, on site to help restore power and clear trees after the massive damage of Superstorm Sandy. Halloween came and went, with many of us still in dark …and counting ourselves lucky if our homes escaped serious damage.
Of course, in the face of such a crisis, trick-or-treating takes a backseat to more pressing concerns. But in an effort to keep things normal for the kids, our town officially “rescheduled” Halloween…and was promptly slammed by a blizzard. Restoration efforts were further complicated, and trick-or-treat was put on the back-burner once again.
And while I love Halloween–probably more than most adults–by that time I was perfectly happy to scrap the whole thing. I’d even packed away our décor in advance of the first storm; after all, who needs giant inflatable spider flying down the street in 80 mph wind? However, there were the kids to consider…so we gamely went along with trick-or-treating in the second week of November. It was a strange out-of-sync experience…I felt like I should come home and carve the Thanksgiving turkey and perhaps hang Christmas stockings.
This year, we’re holding our breath and crossing our fingers for a calm and uneventful Halloween. And the children—with the memory of last year’s delayed festivities still in their mind—are preparing in earnest. We’ve already spent hours costume shopping (zombies in pajamas, anyone?); browsing new and scarier decorations for the house and yard; and whipping up spooky seasonal treats to feast on all month long.
The recipe below, Halloween Heaven, features two of our favorite foods—popcorn and peanut butter—blended with marshmallow cream and candy corn. It’s a no-bake snack that my nine-year-old and her friends can easily put together and enjoy with minimal supervision from mom.
• 8 cups air-popped popcorn
• 7 ounces marshmallow cream
• 1/2 cup reduced fat peanut butter
• 1 cup candy corn
1. Combine marshmallow cream and peanut butter in a large bowl; mix until smooth.
2. Stir in popcorn and candy corn and mix until coated evenly.
3. Drop by heaping spoonfuls on wax paper or non-stick surface and allow to cool.
4. Store in airtight container.
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