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Mill Creek Haunted Hollow
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Discussion Starter #1
My four year old wanted to help so I set up some plastic and thought she could do some painting.

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She had a lot of fun, but it was hard to watch.

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She slapped, swatted, swiped, and slammed the brush against the garden ornaments.

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Paint went everywhere. It dripped down the sides, splattered around the plastic and got all over her.

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She was also excited to paint one of the rocks I set out to home down the plastic.


At the end, I took her in for a shower and then went back out to finish off the painting. One thing I'll give her credit for, she wasn't afraid to put on a thick coat.
 

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Adorable! I think that it is great to let kids help. My grandkids love doing whatever they are allowed to do! This reminds me of when my daughter was 4 and we painted the house. We gave her a brush and paint and gave her a spot on the back of the house! She felt so big!
 

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Imitation Imagineer
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1,117 Posts
I sure do...it's great to see them get involved, and there is even an opportunity to learn a skill, or two.

Here, we are putting joint compound on our previously flat/boring columns. We want to create a 'stone' facade. As one would imagine, there was a lot of cleanup involved.

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And it wasn't just the two-legged kids either....if one looks closely in the first picture, a four-legged kid can be seen lurking in the background, patiently waiting her turn to make a mess.

When no one was watching, she did this:

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...which, ultimately turned out this way:

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Far Away Eyes
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3,354 Posts
Kids, grandkids, husband, whoever wants to help!! I have found it only makes it better. Plus, they like to show everyone what they did, so it feels more like everyone is a part of the haunt.
 

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Oak Lane Cemetery
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My 4 year old "helps" too. He wants to shove sticks into the ground everywhere because he watched me putting the branches into the ground as dead trees. He adjusts and turns every pumpkin we have out that he can reach. I got him to help me spread some dry leaves around the cemetery and now he won't stop bringing leaves from the driveway and sidewalk and putting them around the stones. I've given him a big box of unused spiders, bugs, skulls, bag web and other Halloween items to keep him occupied which he spends hours playing with every day. There are little cemeteries set up on all the couch cushions and surrounded by army man fencing that has been wrapped with web. It's adorable, but I can't sit down anywhere. lol
 

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Super Moderator
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5,659 Posts
Help.

My word, I turn over entire things to them, and do their bidding half the time.

Showed Kyle (14) how to build a breathing grave, he built 2 more. Talia (6) built the scarecrow that's been up all year. Alec's (11) got an eye for decorating, and typically handles placement of most things.
 

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The 5yo gets to help choose which projection goes in the window every other night, stretch some webs, place some spider's. The 11 yo helped corpse a skeleton last year; this year she's been so busy with her own costume that she hasn't had much time to help. I think she appreciates the haunt, but costuming is her real interest so she hasn't taken to prop building much... Yet. They both want to hang out and help at the haunt on Halloween night - might go around a block or two, but will come back to be part of the action.
 

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Never try to eat a zombie
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I let both help out it is a very good bonding experience :) Not only w/ Halloween stuff but building and fixing things in general it teaches them and makes them feel proud of themselves... Heck my son built his own captains bed when he was 3, i just observed and told him where to drill or nail or held the nail for him. ... love it!!!
 

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Never try to eat a zombie
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TK421 I am in Mill Creek every Tuesday and Thursday from 3:30-6:30 pm and would love to check out your haunt.
 

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It develops their creativity at an early age and who knows they may go into the professional world of effects and props later as a result. It can only help them to get experience and decide whether they love it so much they want a career.
 

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Our haunt has always been a family affair. Granted the adults are usually a little selective on the projects the little ones do. My kids and my sisters 3 boys always looked forward to the last weekend of September when all the stuff came out from Grandma & Grandpa's shed. They would spend a Saturday helping get everything out and try on every costume they had. There are a couple of barrels of old costumes kept to make characters out of and they would just play all day trying everything on and helping get it all spread out ready to be organized. They would ask for weeks in advance if it was time yet :)
 

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Mill Creek Haunted Hollow
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Discussion Starter #15
TK421 I am in Mill Creek every Tuesday and Thursday from 3:30-6:30 pm and would love to check out your haunt.
Feel free to stop by. I'm trying to set up more and more, but at the same time, I'm trying to get more and more done on the house. I'm always home!
 

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My 5-year-old daughter did most of the witch lanterns this year--I showed her how to do the first one, she painted the next 11. I helped with the twine and hot glue, but she measured out the lengths and cut the twine. She helped with our cheesecloth ghost, and she's been interested in the tombstones (haven't let her get her hands on those yet, though). Took her to Spirit a few times. She's really getting into it, and looking forward to helping me set up the yard.
 

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Mummy Dearest
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Ahhh. I try to let the kids help. It's sometimes hard because in my head, it should look a certain way. My mother was fabulous with this... she let us decorate however we wanted and never changed anything. I just take deep breaths and remember that I'll cherish it when they are all grown up.
 

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Mill Creek Haunted Hollow
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Discussion Starter #20
Who DOESN'T let the kids help?

Everything you do with your kids is an opportunity to bond. And, hey, didn't this Halloween Mania start out as "something for the kids?"
I couldn't agree more. I think the trick is, as we get more particular with our props and themes, it's sometimes hard to let the kids help. I know when I'm working on props my OCD kicks in and I really want to "get it right". The good news is, there's always something for the kids to do! Moving props, sorting props, handing spider webs, painting, putting out lights, etc.

Bottom line, I keep my girls involved so they, in turn, will keep Halloween alive.
 
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