Make Their Halloween a Fright to Remember With 5 Festive Snacks

Here at Totsy, we have some major Halloween enthusiasts -and the chocolate, donuts, and bags of candy to prove it! But as a mom with more than enough work on her plate, it can get hard to find time to fix a festive snack for the kids on the spookiest day of the year.

So, to help the busy ladies out there put out ghoulish grub they’ll devour faster than a candy bar, we’ve come up with 5 easy treats for the whole family. With these ideas, you can enjoy a homemade Halloween and still manage to get those twenty loads of laundry done!

Spooky Spider Web Pizza: Uh-oh -it looks like critters have invaded more than just those dusty attic corners! Give them a fright when you pull this pie out of the oven. (Click here for the recipe).

Freaky Finger Breadsticks: Your little ones will enjoy helping you roll dough for these witchy pointers. (Click here for the recipe).

Eerie Eggs: Why wait for Easter when your little ghouls and goblins can make Halloween masterpieces out of hard boiled eggs and a bit of food coloring? And we happen to think an arts and crafts hour sounds a lot less scary for mamas out there than egg-on-window disasters.

Spirits on Sticks: These are the ghosts that won’t give your little ones nightmares -and won’t be a scare for you in the clean up stage! (Click here for the recipe).

Creepy Jello Cups: Moms with tots, here’s an easy treat they’re bound to love! Simply make or buy about three dozen jello cups in the colors you see above and arrange them in a jack-o-lantern shape. And if your kids come home with a few little monsters, you’ll have more than enough to go around.

-Diana Denza

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Dine with Diana Fridays: Good-For-You Crockpot BBQ Pulled Chicken

Ok friends, this is one tired mommy and wife. I have been so busy at work, traveling tons and just feel all-together “over it”! I know you can all identify.

I decided that between being exhausted and needing to save time while still preparing something warming for my family in the new chilly fall weather, the crockpot would be my friend again this year!

I’ve been a huge crockpot fan ever since my dad learned how to use one with my grandmother’s recipes on nights my mom wasn’t cooking our dinner.

Basically, if my dad can use a crockpot and come up with something delicious and save tons of time- so can we!

Make this pulled chicken (healthier than pork) with southern inspired barbecue and eat it on its own, plate it with coleslaw for a true Memphis tradition, or just make a sandwich any way you like it.

All you have to do is throw the ingredients in the pot before work and come home to a delicious meal! It’s like magic.

Happy Eating!

Barbecue Pulled Chicken*

Serves 8

Ingredients:

  • 1 8-ounce can reduced-sodium tomato sauce
  • 1 4-ounce can chopped green chiles, drained
  • 3 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon sweet or smoked paprika
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 teaspoons dry mustard
  • 1 teaspoon ground chipotle chile
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trimmed of fat
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced

Directions:

  1. Stir tomato sauce, chiles, vinegar, honey, paprika, tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, ground chipotle and salt in a 6-quart slow cooker (crockpot) until smooth. Add chicken, onion and garlic; stir to combine.
  2. Put the lid on and cook on low until the chicken can be pulled apart, about 5 hours.
  3. Transfer the chicken to a cutting board and shred with a fork. Return the chicken to the sauce, stir well and serve.

Make Ahead Tip: Cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 1 month.

Nutrition:

Per serving: 184 calories; 8 g fat ( 2 g sat , 3 g mono ); 68 mg cholesterol; 8 g carbohydrates; 3 g added sugars; 20 g protein; 1 g fiber; 257 mg sodium; 303 mg potassium.

* Thanks to EatingWell.com for the inspiration!

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This Halloween, Read the Candy Labels

Moms, we know that most of you will be taking your precious little ones out trick or treating for Halloween. And while you already know to limit the number of sweets your kids are allowed to indulge in (who wants their tots bouncing off the walls at midnight, after all?), a sugar rush is really the least of your worries this season!

After Carla Alpert received a call from her 6’3”, 195 lb. husband from a hospital emergency room, she became determined to find out what made him so violently ill. As it turns out, the culprit was a Root Beer Barrel candy from a jumbo sized Costco bag.

From the mere seconds that the candy was in her husband’s mouth (he ended up discarding it), he had an allergic reaction to certain ingredients used in making it.

In an article for Huffington Post Parents, Carla explained that “each ingredient is made from items like corn, that may be genetically engineered or modified and other resources that are not part of any food group, such as petroleum and coal tar.”

And according to HuffPo Parents, possible health effects from ingredients like these include: hyperactivity in kids, skin rashes, hives, headaches, cancer, and tumors.

So, before you cave and let your little ghosts and goblins hit the candy stash, be sure to read every label carefully or purchase only organic or naturally sweetened candy for your children.

You can find more information about the ingredients used in popular candy at BeFoodSmart.com.

Just remember: most candies today are highly modified versions of the treats we used to enjoy as kids. Eat with caution!

-Diana Denza

 

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No Costume? No Problem! Here Are 3 Halloween Outfits That’ll Make You a Hit!

The most spooktacular day of the year is right around the corner, and while we’ve already prepared buckets of candy and hit the costume shops for cute gear for the kids, there’s one little detail many of us have put on the back-burner: what will we wear to celebrate the season?!

If you’ve been treating everyone but yourself (in typical mom fashion), we’re here to help you hit your Halloween party, day at the office, or candy-seeking trip with the tots in spook-approved style.

1. Party Outfit

For your next fright night, pair a simple yet classic black dress with a quirky pair of dark purple or orange tights. Finish the ensemble off with a pair of heeled booties for a fun yet still adult-like look. If you want to go all out on your party outfit, add a statement necklace or Halloween themed earrings, but remember: don’t wear anything you’ll come to regret the next morning!

2. Office Outfit

If you want to get festive but still impress your boss, don a classy pair of black dress pants with your everyday work shoes. On top, go for an orange blouse and black blazer -professional, yet totally fresh and modern. To top off this hot number, add a Halloween-themed brooch. This look will make you the office obsession…in a good way!

3. Casual Outfit

If you’re planning on taking the little ones to collect candy from the neighbors or watching a few horror flicks with the hubby, slip into this easy outfit. Since colored jeans continue to be everywhere this fall and black is timeless, you’ll proudly pull out these pieces again and again!

No matter what you decide to rock this Halloween, remember to strut around with confidence and indulge in a chocolate ghost or two -we promise we won’t tell!

-Diana Denza

 

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Aerosoles Footwear Coming to Totsy!

It’s another shoe coup for Totsy!

Tonight at 9pm EST the Aerosoles Footwear event goes live with over 95 styles available at discounted prices. You’ll love the selection of flats, pumps and boots from one of the leading brands in footwear.

Aerosoles is the favorite style-meets-comfort shoe for many moms, with designs that look as fabulous as they feel.

Who says fashion and function are mutually exclusive?

Sale ends Sat 10/29 at 8am EST! http://bit.ly/tsqWzC

For up-to-date info on sales and other Totsy fun, follow us on Twitter (@totsyfan, @mytotsy) or Like us on Facebook (facebook.com/totsyfan).

 

It’s Time for the Adventures of Phineas and Ferb on Totsy!

Totsy is all about Phineas and Ferb (and Agent P, of course) – Disney’s lovable and creative step-brother duo!

Let your imaginations run wild and shop now for the holidays.  You won’t want to miss out on the perfect Phineas and Ferb-themed gear for your little fan!

Totsy loves that Phineas and Ferb are so creative, adventurous and ambitious! Remind your kids that they too can learn from these traits!

Stock up now on backpacks, lunch boxes, blankets, water bottles, books and more!

And don’t forget to tune in to the Phineas and Ferb series on the Disney Channel and Disney XD!

Shop Phineas and Ferb on Totsy starting tonight, 9PM ET! http://bit.ly/ptVhpC

Dine With Autumn: Savory Stuffed Pumpkin

I’ve been saving this recipe for Halloween time, eagerly awaiting the chance to share with y’all. Another squash recipe? I know I know, but it’s that time of year. And this is one of the most ridiculously delicious things you will ever taste. The stuffing bubbles together and the pumpkin flesh is tender and flavorful, it’s a taste fiesta. Plus the kids will love to get involved, let them help stuff the pumpkin or choose and sub-in different ingredients. Bacon instead of Canadian ham, rice instead of bread, you really can’t go wrong.

Savory Stuffed Pumpkin

Time: 2.5 hours (30 min assembly, 90-120 min cook time)

Serves: 3-4

Ingredients:

  • 1 small-medium pumpkin (approx. 4 lbs)
  •  ½ lb stale bread – ½ inch cubes
  • ½ lb white cheese shredded – cheddar or gruyere
  • 2/3 cup heavy cream
  • 5-6 rounds Canadian Ham – diced
  • 2 cloves garlic – crushed
  • 1 Tb fresh thyme – chopped
  • 1 Tb. Fresh rosemary – chopped
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • Pepper to taste
  • Salt to taste – may be unnecessary due to salt in meat & cheese

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Prepare the pumpkin as you would before a Halloween carving, carefully cutting a wide circle to lift away the stem and removing all seeds and strings.
  3. Once it’s clean, rub the inside with a moderate amount of salt and pepper.
  4. In a separate large bowl, gently toss together all of your ingredients.
  5. You may need just a bit more or less cream – just make sure all the bread is soaked through but not swimming.
  6. Now stuff that gourd! Your happy little pumpkin should be filled almost to the top but not overflowing, otherwise you’ll have a mess.
  7. Return the stem circle to its original location and place the whole pumpkin on a lined baking sheet.
  8. Bake for 90-120 min, or until pumpkin can be easily pierced with a knife and the ingredients are hot and bubbly.
  9. Serve in slices with your favorite green salad. Bon Appetit!

 

 

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