October has pretty much arrived, which means just 31 more days til Halloween. Which can seem like forever to a child. Make the waiting for the Halloween fun a little easier with these two cool ways to countdown the days, both of which I received free for review.
How Many Days 'til...Halloween craft kit
This simple craft for grandmas (or moms or any adult) to make for the youngsters in their life helps minimize the "how many more days til Halloween?" requests. Hang it where the kids can reach and allow them to move the sleep black cat from pocket to pocket, marking the days til Halloween has arrived.
The craft kit comes with everything crafters will need (except glue) to create the adorable 14" wide by 13" high felt pumpkin with pockets. felt, numbered pockets, embroidery floss, Halloween-themed doodads and more. I was happy to have a complete kit for the craft instead of having to hunt down all the little things required to make it eerie and awesome.
All you need in addition to the kit and some glue is a little know how—mainly, I found, how to execute a blanket stitch. Which, incidentally, I had never done before. But with a quick Internet search and comfort in the note on the kit instructions that the project is meant to be "primitive" and "Uneven stitches and wonky placement add to the charm of the total piece."
My stitching was indeed uneven and slightly wonky (and actually not stitched exactly as instructed, an oversight on my part). Even so, the project took me about five hours total time, spread out across a few evenings to complete and turned out quite well. I think my grandsons will agree and be delighted in moving the black cat from pocket to pocket, anticipating the final pocket marked 31.
It's likely a little late to create your own How Many Days 'til...Halloween craft project this year, but there's always next year. The kits are available for $22 from Surf City Mercantile Etsy shop.
There is still time for Countdown Cal Halloween countdown fun, though—if you order soon. Countdown Cal is a Halloween countdown calendar filled with 16 foil-wrapped and holiday-themed milk chocolates.
The counting fun begins on October 16. Kids open a flap each day, enjoying a treat hidden below each flap and viewing the number of days remaining until Halloween marked on each flap. A "countdown pal" on the pack of the package provides a spot for kids to color in the days as each flap is opened. For additional fun, a Halloween picture is printed on each flap and kids are encouraged to find that picture in the spooky cemetery scene printed on the back of the Countdown Cal box.
The artwork on the package is delightfully eerie, but not too scary for little counters (and chocolate eaters). The milk chocolate treats are manufactured in the USA by RM Palmer Company and are certified Kosher.
My one suggestion for parents and grandparents sharing Countdown Cal with your kiddos: Read the directions. It took me a minute to figure out which flap to open on which day, as the numbered flaps correspond to the number in which they should be opened, not the date or days remaining. I opened—and ate—my sample candies out of order, as I didn't heed the directions.
Countdown Cal retails for $11.99 and can be purchased at www.countdowncal.com. Discounts of 5-30 percent are available, depending on quantity requested in a single order—which is great for grandparents with lots of grandchildren counting the days to Halloween.
Disclosure: I received both products above free for review. Opinions are my own.