Enchanted Mommy

Halloween Spider Jello!

My very creative sister came up with this cute Halloween snack to bring to her daughter’s Kindergarten party.    It is very easy and was a big hit with the kids.  All you need is a package of plastic spiders from the dollar store, some clear plastic cups, and some orange colored jello.  Make the jello as usual and put the spider in so it looks like it is climbing out of the jello before it chills in the refrigerator.Now you have a cute and festive snack that cost almost nothing and took no time to do.

Kids can be so funny… there were a few kids in the class that said they thought the spider went potty in the jello.  Random thoughts of some five and six year old kids!  Gotta love it!

It’s a Recipe Party!

Yes, you got it!  I’m hosting a recipe party at my house and it’s in less than a week.  I got the idea from a dear friend and neighbor of mine that moved to Israel.  You might be wondering what exactly it is and I’m here to tell you!  You just invite a bunch of your girl friends over, they each bring a dish, you make a dish and have some “fun” drinks and let the night begin.

Well, that’s not exactly all it entails, but it’s supposed to be super fun!  Each person emails the host their five favorite recipes before the party, brings one dish of their five sent recipes and shows up for a childless great night!  I made sure to let people know that it’s supposed to be stress free, if they show up in sweats, no one will judge.

I’m still waiting for all of my RSVP’s to see what I am making.  I sent out an evite and asked everyone when they responded to put in the comment section what they were bringing.  That way I can fill the gaps (meaning I make a dessert or main course if no one else is bringing it).

I’m really excited to see what the night brings.  I will take lots of pictures and post some of the delicious recipes!  Yay for girls night — husband and babes are leaving too.  It’s just me and my favorite girl friends.  Excitement is an understatement!

Now, don’t be jeally, go host one of your own!

Fall Cookie Cake = Yummy

festive cookie cake

Don’t you just want to take a bite?!?!?!?!

Doesn’t this look so yummy?  My husband always says that you eat with your eyes.

I made this because we had some friends over for Halloween that have two girls that are the same age as ours.  It was our after trick-or-treating dessert!  Yummmmm.  The cool part about this dessert is that Ella really did help me make it!  I got the idea from pillsbury dot com which came from pinterest.

Here is what you need:

cookie cake fun

cookie dough, chocolate chips, reese pieces, peanut butter, white icing, candy corn and round pizza pan

1 roll (16.5 oz) refrigerated chocolate chip cookies
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter (I didn’t really measure)
1/2 cup reese pieces
1/2 cup dry-roasted peanuts
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup candy corn
1/4 cup vanilla creamy ready-to-spread frosting
  • Heat oven to 350°F.
  • Line 12-inch pizza pan with foil; grease foil with shortening. Break cookie dough into 2-inch pieces; arrange evenly in pan. With floured fingers, press to form crust.
  • Bake 16 to 18 minutes or until deep golden brown. (I only baked 14 minutes)
plain cookie cake

The edges should be a little golden brown.

  • Cool completely, about 30 minutes.
  • Use foil to lift crust from pan. Carefully remove foil from crust; place crust on serving platter or tray (I didn’t have a serving tray big enough so I left it in the pan).
  • Spread peanut butter over crust. Sprinkle with chocolate candies and peanuts.
cookie cake with peanut butter

It doesn’t have to be smoothed perfect because there will be toppings all over it.

kid helping with cookie cake

Here is Ella sprinkling the toppings on the cake

  • In small microwavable bowl, microwave frosting uncovered on High 10 to 15 seconds or until thin enough to drizzle. Transfer to small resealable food-storage plastic bag. Cut small hole in 1 corner of bag; drizzle over cookie pizza.
You’re done!!  It’s so easy, so yum and oh so fun!
cookie cake helped by 2 year old

She’s proud of her work!

fall cookie cake piece

Can’t resist, huh?

I made my husband take the leftovers to work the next day and they were all gone before lunch!


Trunk or Treat Party!

We took the kids to a Trunk or Treat party at our church last night.  It was so much fun!

The car parked next to us had a life size skeleton with motion sensors.  If someone walked close to it, the skeleton would play music and dance.  To say my barely two year old was obsessed with it would be an understatement!  He spent most of the night running to it and pointing, “Dance bad guy! Dance!” and then laughing and dancing with it.  It was hysterical to watch and I am so sad that it was too dark out to get a good video of it.

My three little guys waiting for the party to start!

After the trunk or treating part we all went inside for some cupcakes (as if we didn’t already have enough sugar) and some fun and games.  The favorite game was Whack-A-Mole.  The line to play this game wrapped far around the table!  The wait was well worth it though!

You got the chance to WHACK some real moles (12 to 14 year old Deacons) with a water noodle!  The Deacons would poke their heads out of the holes and the kids would nail them!  I am not sure the kids will ever have so much fun again!  Even my two year old got in on that action!

My two year old ready to Whack some Deacons!

The youth also put on a haunted house as they do every year, but this year I actually thought it was pretty good.  They some how found a way to turn off the emergency fire lights this year so the room was completely dark before the strobe lights started flashing! My hubby was helping work the spook ally so I felt pretty good about letting my almost three year old (yes, I have a 2yr old, 3yr old, and a 6yr old… all boys) go through it with me.

He loved it!  Someone would jump out at us with a scary mask on and he would yell the fakest “AAAAHHHH” you have ever heard.  It made everyone in the spoke alley laugh.  Although, I was a bit embarrassed after we came out the exit when my three year exclaimed with glee, “I saw Daddy dead!”  Maybe I shouldn’t desensitize him so soon!

Here’s to a fun Halloween!!!

Cute Handmade Dragonflies!

Last weekend we went to husband’s parents house.  It was a lot of fun!  I decided to look up pumpkin patches there.  They live in Virginia Beach and I only found one online!  So, we gave it a shot.  Ella had a lot of fun.  It was no cox farms, but it was close and a different type of fun.

Something that really struck my attention was these really cute dragonflies made out of butter knives on the outside of a cage.

dragonflies made out of knives

Here they all are hanging on the outside of a cage of animals.

Here is the close up:

butter knife dragonfly

Close up picture of the four knives made into a dragonfly.

I thought this was an awesome DIY.  I would just go to a yard sale or even dollar store and pick up the butter knives.  Cut off four tops and super glue them to one bottom and wahhhhlaaaa.  I thought they would be so cute in a little girls room spray painted pastel colors!  Fun fun fun and very creative!!


An Ode to Cox Farms

I was able to introduce my husband to my favorite fall place yesterday!  I talked Cox Farms up SO much to him that he didn’t think it could live up to my awesomesauce feeling.  I think if I talk about how awesome it is one more time, he might start to hate the place because I’m overly obsessed (I know I’m being REALLY dramatic)!  In the end though, he loved it just as much!  Here’s an introduction picture of this awesome place that is located in Centerville, VA:

sign for cox farms

This place is SO fun!


  • There is so much to do that even when there are 20 school buses full of kids, it still doesn’t seem crowded.
  • Everything is reasonably priced.
  • Good food (fresh kettle corn, yum yum yum).
  • Free cider and apples while you are in the park AND each person gets to take a free small pumpkin with them on their way out.
  • Workers are SO incredibly nice and helpful.
  • Porta potties are clean and they are all over the place.
  • They have a ton of picnic tables set up and you can bring your own food in to eat wherever or buy food at all the different food stands.
  • It’s for kids of all ages.

First, let me tell you some of the things they have for kids.

We started our day off at the HUGE slide

big slide at cox farms

It goes really fast. My two year old got her own burlap sack and rode down next to me. It's great for any age!

Then, we did the hayride that lasted about 15 minutes.  It had so much on it.  I don’t want to spoil it.  I wish that I got a better picture of it, but there is always next time.

hayride at cox farms

It can fit so many people on it. Each tractor pulls two of these and there was probably at least six tractors.

Next, we went to the awesome corn maze!  It took us a while, but it also had many fun things through it (an old school bus, an old little house, random doors).

corn maze at cox farms

Ella and my husband, Brian in the corn maze.

Then we hit up the petting zoo.  This was one of Ella’s favorites. You can buy an ice cream cone filled with goat food for $1.   Look at these pictures!

petting zoo at cox farms

Ella feeding the goats

goat at cox farms

Ella didn't want to leave this one out!

After this, we did many more slides and went to the kiddie area (awesome for little ones under three feet).

big slide at the farm

Castle Slide at Cox Farms (there are so many like this)

slide through barn at cox farms

This slide is going through a a barn.

cox farms slide

My two year old did all the slides by herself.

three little pigs house at cox farms

Here is a picture of the three little pigs brick house that they built. It had a slide coming out of it!

Ella in chick at cox farms

Here is Ella playing in the kiddie part at cox farms. It was a nice little break for her.

Lastly, we took Ella to the piled high hay bails and she loved jumping off of them.  There were tunnels that went through them.

Cox farm hay bails

Oh to be a kid again! Yes, she nailed the landing too!

On the way out, you get a free small pumpkin.

free pumpkins at cox farms

Each person with a wristband (2 and older) gets a free pumpkin

On the way out to your car, there is a market that you can buy pies, pumpkins, local honey, kettle corn, cider, apples, candy and toys.  We didn’t buy a big pumpkin, but I wish we had because they are a lot better looking than the ones at the grocery store.  They were $.69 per pound.

Some things we didn’t even get to do.  They put on a little show where they milk a cow (it’s really cute, I saw it last year).  We also didn’t do the rope swings because Ella was too little and we didn’t get to do all of the slides because it was time to call it a day.  We played for about four hours.

Okay, I guess I’ve said enough and I hope I convinced you to take a trip to Cox Farms and feel my over-the-top happiness (if you’re in the northern VA area)!  If you’re not a NOVA person, find a fun pumpkin patch near you!



A Bunny-Farm Birthday Party!

This past weekend I went to my nieces 8th birthday party in West Palm Beach, Florida.  It was so well done that I felt like I needed to write about it! Even though it was at specific place, I think a lot of the ideas can be incorporated anywhere.

The party was at a place called the Edu-Garden.  It was made and designed by 7th grade students and their science teacher (my sister).  The middle school students plant vegetables and care for bunnies and chickens as part of their school science lab at a public charter school.

The Edu-Garden

The party set up at the Edu-Garden patio

The party was a huge hit… and how could it not be when you can hold and play with real bunnies!!!  One of the bunnies just had babies so the kids got to see the little tiny baby bunnies as well.  They fed the bunnies lettuce and carrots and fed the chickens raisins.  The garden was huge and had a ton of hands on and educational stuff to do.

My niece, the birthday girl, with the baby bunny

Besides the animals, the kids hunted for bugs then used identification cards to identify them.  They also had plastic critter puzzles the kids used to catagorize and match up different types of  bugs.

My 2 year old niece, chasing bunnies around. The bunnies sure got a good work out!

My nephew catagorizing bugs during the party

Critter categorizing puzzle

My niece planting her sunflower

Basically, the kids had free reign of the garden where they could play with the bunnies, feed the chickens, plant a sunflower to take home, identify different bugs, and play with plastic bug puzzles.  They also had a gated parking lot where they set up relay race games using scooters.

The scooter relay races were a big hit!

The party ended with an adorable pair of bunny birthday cakes and party favors of plastic bugs and a sunflower they planted themselves.

It was all very cute and all the kids had a great time!

Decorating an Elephant Pumpkin

My son’s first grade teacher asked me to be in charge of their class pumpkin this year.  The class voted on one of their favorite book characters to create for the school pumpkin contest.  Gerald the elephant won the contest so I started up on google to see the best way to create an elephant pumpkin.

Gerald the Elephant Pumpkin – The final product

I got the idea from Michaels.com and loved it for a class project because it had so many different pieces to it that it was easy to get all 25 kids to help with at least one part.

This is the book character the 1st grad class voted to make

This is the book Character the class voted for


1 large tall shaped pumpkin (for the body)
1 small round shaped pumpkin (for the head)
4 Styrofoam cones about 9 inches long (for the arms and legs)
12 half wooden robin eggs (fingernails)
2 wooden circles (eyes)
Black yarn (eye brows)
Black pipe cleaner (glasses)
Sharpie (to draw the mouth and pupils on the eyes)
Strong Tooth picks (to secure pumpkin heads together and limbs to the pumpkin)
4 artificial pumpkins (to glue together to make the trunk)
Cardboard (to cut ears out)
White paint (for the fingernails and eyes)
Grey paint (for the pumpkins, legs, trunk, and ears)


  • Paint the pumpkins, cylinders, artificial pumpkins, and ears grey
  • Paint the wooden half robin eggs and the wooden circles white
  • After the pumpkins are completely dry, place four or five toothpicks in the bottom of the smaller pumpkin about halfway in.  Carefully put the small pumpkin on top of the large pumpkin pressing the toothpicks into the larger pumpkin
  • Glue the artificial pumpkins together in the shape of a trunk, then use a tooth pick to secure trunk to the pumpkin face
  • Glue three fingernails to the large end of each cone and secure cones to the large pumpkin with toothpicks
  • Use a sharpie to draw a mouth on the pumpkin and and pupils on eyes
  • Use a hot glue gun or super glue to glue the eyes, eyebrows, ears, and glasses to the pumpkin

A Different Fun Fall Activity

Looking for a fun, exciting, and different fall activity?  Last weekend we took our three little monkeys to Kings Dominion for their annual Howl-o-Fest.  Besides the usual amusement park rides, they have a cute little pirate treasure hunt included with your regular admission. You pick up a treasure map and go to each marked location to pick up a piece of the “treasure.”  The treasure was different at each location and included, a pirate hat, a pirate bandana, an eye patch, a beaded necklace, a spyglass, a black pirate flag, and a pumpkin.   In the end, it was all the makings of a cute pirate costume.

The Loot! My kids have pretty much dressed up and played pirates every day since!

At one location you had to find your way to the end of the hay and corn maze to earn your prize.  At another, it was running through the “Seven Seas Foam Pit” made of waist high foamy soap bubbles.  There was also a great Charlie Brown Pirate Show, pumpkin painting, and all the staff in the children’s area dressed as pirates (some of them even walking on tall stilts).

My 3 year old painting his pumpkin in the pumkin patch

The kids had a great time and so did we.  The staff was very enthusiastic and really made it a fun environment.   This was definitely something a little different, but so fun that we will be making a tradition out of it.

To see if there is a park near you, visit cedarpark.com.

You don’t have to go all the way to an amusement park to do this activity though.  Host a treasure hunt in your back yard for your kids.  We did this too and now my six year old is obsessed with hiding a toy somewhere in the house and giving his little brother or cousin a hand drawn map to find it.  So fun and keeps the kids busy for hours!

My six year old painting his pumpkin in the pumpkin patch.

Encouraging Creativity and Imagination with a Fun Clown Project

Creativity and imagination are the most cherished parts of childhood.  I love watching my little monkeys in their moments of crazy make believe games and stories.

My six year old came home from school today with a story he wrote about warriors and dragons.  It was about him and his best friend using their super powers to battle the dragons and rescue both of their little brothers from the dungeon.  He was so proud of his story.  At dinner I asked what his favorite part of his day was.  He said it was bringing his “book” home to show me.  Oh how I love that little guy!

This post is in honor of encouraging and developing creativity.  The idea is to pick a project, tell the kids what they are making, and then give them all of the supplies they need.  Then, let them go to town with it.  DO NOT guide them in anyway.  Sure, if they need help squeezing the glue give them a little help, but make sure they are placing each piece where they want it.  If they want a mouth on the forehead and seven eyes on the chin, let them.  This is their creation.

There are times when you are doing projects where you might guide your child to using the correct color or putting the pieces in the correct place because you want to teach them about that specific object you are making.  This is not one of those times.  Let them have fun with this and create their own masterpiece.  Some kids may want to put the parts in the right place and that is okay too.  If anything, it can teach us to recognize and embrace the sweet and unique personalities each child has.

I decided to do clowns because they are already silly to begin with.  I pre-cut different shapes that could be used for parts of the clown face, put out a pile of googly eyes and a couple bottles of glue and let the kids create their masterpieces.