Category Archives: Halloween

Trick-or-Treat with the President and First Lady

I don’t remember if past Presidents or First Ladies have ever passed out Trick-or-Treats at the White House before, but I suppose having children of their own small enough to enjoy the Halloween festivity is a good enough reason for doing so, especially since the children enjoying themselves are from military families.

The following was posted at the White House Blog and includes the recipes for the in-house made treats that were passed out by President Obama and his wife Michelle:

Last night, President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama welcome area students and the children of military families to the White House for trick-or-treating.

Check out the video of the President and First Lady handing out cookies, White House M&M’s and dried fruit mix to trick-or-treaters at the North Portico of the White House.

http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/all/modules/swftools/shared/flash_media_player/player5x2.swf

The White House and the surrounding grounds are decorated in celebration of Halloween. As the trick-or-treaters made their way across the North Lawn to the North Portico they were entertained by the Marine Band playing Halloween music and spooked by in-costume actors from Washington-area theatres, brought together by theatreWashington.

Check out the White House Halloween recipes below.

The White House Sweet Dough Butter Cookie Recipe

1 lb Sugar 1 tsp Vanilla
2 lbs Butter 1 tsp Salt
3 Eggs 3 lbs All Purpose Flour

Mix the butter and sugar till soft and well beaten. Then add eggs, vanilla, salt and half the flour. Beat on slow speed till mixed, then add the rest of the flour and mix until incorporated.

Push flat onto a cookie sheet and refrigerate overnight. Roll out to one quarter inch thick and cut out cookie shapes with cookie cutter.

Bake at 350F for 14 minutes and then allow to cool.

Make Your Own Dried Fruit Mix

Dried Apples Dried Pineapple
Dried Apricots Dried Papayas
Dried Pears Dried Cherries
Dried Blueberries Banana Chips

Combine ingredients and serve.

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Filed under Halloween, Michelle Obama, President Obama, the White House Blog, Trick-or-Treat

Saturday Morning Cartoons: Garfield’s Halloween Adventure

This is no trick, here’s a real treat for you guys, a full length Garfield cartoon for your Halloween watching pleasure. Get the kids and sit them down for a real classic from days gone by.

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Filed under Garfield, Halloween, Saturday morning cartoons

It’s that time of year again -Halloween Safety Tips

With Halloween just a few days away, it is time once again to remember a few important safety tips when preparing for that most spook-tacular day .

I have reposted these tips each year since starting this blog, this year is no exception. I hope that readers will heed some (if not all) of these tips so that their Halloween can be happy, safe and fun for everyone.

Trick-Or-Treating
• Make sure that an adult or older responsible youth accompanies young children.
• Plan and discuss the trick-or-treat route your children intend to follow, ideally a well-lit, well-populated course. Instruct your kids to stick to this route, and establish what tie they should return home.
• Write your child’s name, address and phone number on a piece of paper and slip it in a pocket or pin it to his/her costume, in case your child gets separated from the group.
• Review pedestrian safety rules with your children, including looking both ways before crossing the street and not crossing the street between parked cars.
• Tell your children to walk on sidewalks, not on the street; where there are no sidewalks, children should walk on the left side of the road, facing traffic.
• Teach your children to stop only at homes that are well-lit, and never enter a stranger’s home.
• If you’re driving your kids around to trick-or-treat make sure they get out of your car on the curb side, not on the traffic side of the road.
• Instruct your kids not to eat any of their treats until they get home. Be sure to wash any fruit and it into small pieces before giving it to your kids to eat.

Costumes
• Knives, swords, and other accessories should be made from cardboard or flexible material. Sharp toys present all sorts of dangers, including injuring your child if he or she trips and falls on it. Falls are the leading cause of unintentional injuries on Halloween.
• Trim trick-or-treat bags with reflective tape.
• Give your child flashlights to carry so they can be more visible to motorist.
• If your child is wearing a mask, make sure that it has large holes for the eyes and mouth. Also, avoid hats that will slide over your child’s eyes.

Other Halloween Fun
• Avoid giving treats that can be harmful to young children, including gum, peanuts, hard candies and small toys. Also, remember that many children have food allergies to peanuts and dairy products.
• When carving pumpkins, kids should not be allowed to use knives, its best to let children clean out the pumpkin and draw a face on it.
• If you set out jack-o-lanterns on your sidewalk or porch, be sure there is enough room for kids to pass through in groups without the danger of costumes catching on fire.
• Explain to your children the consequences of vandalism and other antics, such as animal cruelty. Both are unacceptable and punishable by law.

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Filed under costumes, Halloween, Halloween Masks, Safety Tips, Trick-or-Treat

Saturday Morning Cartoons: Popeye’s Fright to the Finish

It’s Saturday morning and do you know what time it is? Why of course, it’s cartoon time.

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Filed under Bluto, Halloween, Olive Oyl, Popeye, Saturday morning cartoons

Saturday Morning Cartoons: Danse Macabre

Its’ getting to be that time of year again, eat up those Cheerios and watch an old PBS produced Halloween cartoon before heading out for a little fall frolicking.

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Filed under Dense Macabre, Halloween, PBS, Saturday morning cartoons

>Saturday Morning Cartoons: Scrappy’s Ghost Story

>One more day til Halloween, so while your getting the costumes together and the candy ready for the Trick-or-Treaters take a minute and watch a cartoon to get you in the Spirit !

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Filed under ghost stories, Halloween, Saturday morning cartoons, scrappy, Trick-or-Treat

>Halloween Safety Tips

>With Halloween just a few days away, it is important to keep in mind the following safety tips when preparing for that most spook-tacular day .

Trick-Or-Treating
• Make sure that an adult or older responsible youth accompanies young children.
• Plan and discuss the trick-or-treat route your children intend to follow, ideally a well-lit, well-populated course. Instruct your kids to stick to this route, and establish what tie they should return home.
• Write your child’s name, address and phone number on a piece of paper and slip it in a pocket or pin it to his/her costume, in case your child gets separated from the group.
• Review pedestrian safety rules with your children, including looking both ways before crossing the street and not crossing the street between parked cars.
• Tell your children to walk on sidewalks, not on the street; where there are no sidewalks, children should walk on the left side of the road, facing traffic.
• Teach your children to stop only at homes that are well-lit, and never enter a stranger’s home.
• If you’re driving your kids around to trick-or-treat make sure they get out of your car on the curb side, not on the traffic side of the road.
• Instruct your kids not to eat any of their treats until they get home. Be sure to wash any fruit and it into small pieces before giving it to your kids to eat.

Costumes
• Knives, swords, and other accessories should be made from cardboard or flexible material. Sharp toys present all sorts of dangers, including injuring your child if he or she trips and falls on it. Falls are the leading cause of unintentional injuries on Halloween.
• Trim trick-or-treat bags with reflective tape.
• Give your child flashlights to carry so they can be more visible to motorist.
• If your child is wearing a mask, make sure that it has large holes for the eyes and mouth. Also, avoid hats that will slide over your child’s eyes.

Other Halloween Fun
• Avoid giving treats that can be harmful to young children, including gum, peanuts, hard candies and small toys. Also, remember that many children have food allergies to peanuts and dairy products.
• When carving pumpkins, kids should not be allowed to use knives, its best to let children clean out the pumpkin and draw a face on it.
• If you set out jack-o-lanterns on your sidewalk or porch, be sure there is enough room for kids to pass through in groups without the danger of costumes catching on fire.
• Explain to your children the consequences of vandalism and other antics, such as animal cruelty. Both are unacceptable and punishable by law.

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Filed under Halloween, Safety Tips

>NJPP Monday Minute 10/25/10: This is the time to go a little "batty"

>
It’s almost Halloween, a time to celebrate the ghoulies and ghosties and long-leggedy beasties and things that go bump in the night. One of the most enduring symbols of fright night is the silhouette of a bat, wings spread in a wide scallop, backlit by an orange glowing moon. But, please kiddies, don’t be frightened of these often misunderstood mammals (some of which actually do feed on blood). Bats play a critical role in the world’s ecosystem. In some African countries, bats are sacred animals thought to be the physical manifestation of souls. In much of Asia, bats are symbols of good luck.

Bats are not so revered here, despite their tremendous contribution to the public weal, and New Jersey’s bat population is dying off at an alarming rate.

This is the time of year many bats begin to hibernate. In New Jersey’s most populated hibernation spot – Hibernia Mine in Morris County – fewer than 1,700 of almost 30,000 bats survived last winter’s sleep, according to Mick Valent, Principal Zoologist for the New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife. Worse, Valent said, many survivors showed signs of infection with a fungus that is rapidly spreading across the country.

The fungus is called “white-nose syndrome” and is named for the whitish powder that appears on the nose, ears and wings of infected bats. This disease has killed an estimated 90 percent of bats in the state–and that’s very bad news, not just on Halloween.

Bats serve a vital role in the ecosystem as pollinators and seed-dispersers for countless plants. Without their pollination and seed-dispersing services, local ecosystems could gradually collapse as plants fail to provide food and cover for wildlife species. But perhaps their greatest contribution is in pest control. Bats consume about 3,000 insects per hour while feeding, and mosquitoes are a favorite food. Mosquitoes of course are carriers of some of the world’s worst diseases such as malaria, encephalitis and the West Nile virus. In New Jersey West Nile virus is a recognized problem which threatens to grow if the mosquito population is not controlled. Fewer bats mean more mosquitoes, more mosquitoes mean more illnesses, more illness means lost work and school.

Bats also like to eat many species of moths that damage agricultural products, vegetation and of course the clothing we all wear. One moth can potentially lay 1,000 eggs at a time, making them the scourge of New Jersey farmers and wool sweater-wearing New Jerseyans alike.

The obvious public policy alternative to the natural pest control bats provide is increased pesticide spraying. Spraying is expensive and carries with it health and environmental risks. Much of the cost of spraying is borne by New Jersey counties with some help from the NJ Department of Environmental Protection through grants, but that amount last year was only about $1 million for the state’s 21 counties to divide. The rest of the cost was borne by the counties.

Valent and other zoologists believe humans are to blame for the bats’ demise here; that fungal pathogens were introduced into American bat caves by visitors who previously entered European caves and carried the disease back on boots or equipment that wasn’t properly cleaned. While bats in Europe are not dying at the same alarming rate, scientists in the U.S. are working to figure out how to save their North American relatives. Valent is hopeful that common anti-fungal compounds might soon offer a cure.

So as you trick or treat, look to those black wings in the sky and beware the glint off of their sharp teeth. But be at least a little grateful and appreciate that those speedy little flashes zooming across the sky are important to us on more than just one night a year.

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Filed under bats, Halloween, Monday Minute, New Jersey Policy Perspective

>Speaking of Signs; Has Halloween Tricks All Ready Started In Middletown With The Taking Of Byrnes and Mahoney Signs ?

>In the 5 days that I had been away attending my grandfathers funeral in Utah, I noticed in my return that here have been a number of Byrnes & Mahoney signs missing from the roadsides that had been there previously.

I know periodically that signs are taken by kids as pranks or are removed by Township, County or State employees if the signs are thought to be on land that is owned by either entity,but when only the signs of one group of candidates are being taken away and the others remain that raises the red flag.
Such is the case with Middletown Committeeman Sean Byrnes and his running mate Mary Mahoney, their signs seem to be disappearing and not just from the roadside but from private property and resident homes as well, while their republican opponents signs are still visible on lawns and on roadways.
As confirmation of what I have been witnessing, I have been sent an email and found a letter to the editor posted at the Independent’s website that discusses exactly what I had been feeling since my return:

“Boo! Once again, Halloween (dirty?) tricks are in evidence in Middletown. On Palmer Avenue, Leonardville Road by the Navy underpass, and other Middletown locations there is a pattern of Scharfenberger-Settembrino election signs being placed very close in front of Byrnes-Mahoney signs, blocking their visibility. Gremlins have also placed some Little signs to block the other side of Byrnes signs.

In the pre-Halloween spirit of generosity, I choose to believe that the disrespectful sign positioning is due to the fearful over-zealousness of campaign workers, like the young goblin caught in the act late at night. Perhaps Mayor Scharfenberger is not aware of the tactics. I call upon the mayor to take responsibility, order the situation corrected at once, and not sanction repetition of the tactic.”



And the Letter from the Independent:
Taking political signs impedes political process

The Middletown Democrats have been experiencing an appreciable loss of political signs. Perhaps you have noticed where they are missing. Those are the signs that have the names of Sean Byrnes and Mary Mahoney on them. They seem to be disappearing from various parts of the township.


I have been trying to police them, and I have concluded that some of our signs are actually stolen in broad daylight. The situation has been studied, and I have given it a great deal of attention.

I have concluded that it is not the local raccoons that are attracted to our signs, but it may be the rats. The attraction for Democratic signs has been so great that whenever Democratic signs make an appearance with other signs, it is ours that are taken. Once they are taken, they are never to be seen again. I am not trying to call this kidnapping, but it may be close to the same thing.

Whatever you want to call this, there is one thing for certain. The perpetrators are impeding the political process, which is the basis of our democracy.

Preston Gillam

Belford

Do adults really need to play these silly games? If so, it could only lead to one conclusion in peoples minds and that is, Gerry Scharfenberger and the rest of the Middletown GOP are deathly afraid of losing this election, after a 5 year record of raising taxes by 45%, I would be afraid of losing also. Even still, to have members of your party taking down or block your opponents signs with your own, is childish. It’s time to grow up!

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Filed under Byrnes and Mahoney, campaign signs, Gerry Scharfenberger, Halloween, Middletown GOP

>Saturday Morning Cartoons: Betty Boop Halloween Party

>It’s October and Halloween is right around the corner so before I head out to start putting out the jack-o-lanterns, its time for a cartoon.

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Filed under Betty Boop, Halloween, Saturday morning cartoons