The Best Halloween Traditions for Families with Little Kids

The Best Halloween Traditions for Families with Little Kids

I LOVE a good family tradition. 

Traditions create connection, bringing a sense of belonging and identity. A family with traditions is a connected family.

That's why traditions are so important to me! It's why The Mm-hmm Shop is centered around activities for families - we hope to make tradition-making and keeping easier for you so that your family has plenty of opportunities to create memories together.

And by tradition, I don't necessarily mean something that takes a lot of time, energy, money, or even advanced planning. I just mean something repeatable that marks an occasion or event.

My formula for a great tradition is pretty simple, really.

  • You can count on it happening
  • It connects the people who participate to one another
  • It leaves room for flexibility
  • It can be anywhere from simple to extravagant - whatever works for the occasion!

Holidays are a great time to enjoy family traditions. Here are a few ideas for Halloween traditions that my own family has enjoyed over the years.

The BEST Halloween Traditions for Families with Little Kids

Bobbing for Apples

Wanna know the secret to getting it the fastest? If you can't just grab a stem with your teeth, you've got to take the plunge and use your mouth to push an apple all the way to the bottom of the barrel (or to the side wall). Trying to bite that thing as it bobs around in the middle of the water is almost futile!!

A boy and girl bob for apples on Halloween


This is a tradition that lasts all month long and just takes a few minutes every day! Sometimes the anticipation of something is even better than the event, right?! We've gone with the classic paper chain, as well as a coloring page countdown (grab one of these cute monster coloring pages in the shop as a printable or a poster we ship to you!).

A halloween themed paper chain Halloween Countdown coloring poster on a table with markers

Pumpkin Painting or Carving

If you love carving pumpkins, but your kids can't do it themselves yet, consider carving yours while the kids apply paint, stickers, or other craft items to their own. Expect a mess, but a FUN one!

A boy and girl paint a pumpkin for Halloween A toddler admires some lighted jack-o-lanterns

Donuts on a String

You can put a bunch of donuts on one string, or create a loop for each individual donut. Rules are you have to keep your hands behind your back. For added challenge, do it blindfolded!

A blindfolded boy and his little sister eat donuts on a string
Treasure Hunts

Fill the time between school dismissal and trick-or-treating with this fun search game, or set it up at your Halloween party! In the shop, we have a great one that's easy to set-up and includes some Glow-in-the-Dark squishy toys for prizes! There's also a printable version, in case you need this thing NOW!

Making with Halloween Kid Crafts & Treats

We love making our own bats and ghosts to hang from the ceilings and walls. All you need is paper, string, tape, and little creativity! And, of course, the kids ADORE making tasty treats with a Halloween theme - decorating monster cookies, making pumpkins with Rice Krispies Treats and Kit-Kat bars have both been faves.

 Pumpkins made from Rice Krispies Treats and Kit-Kat bars. A skeleton made of cotton balls and Q-tips.

Trick-or-Treating and/or Trunk-or-Treating

So far, my kids have preferred to go collect candy at a Trunk or Treat event and then help hand out our candy at home on Halloween night. (That's when we do the bobbing for apples and donuts on a string - between groups of trick-or-treaters.) 

Kids in costume at a Trunk or Treat event

If you can't tell, I'm partial to traditions that take very little prep. Hopefully you've found a good grab-and-go activity idea or two!!

If the goal is simply having fun together, there's no need to be extravagant. The best memories are made where there's love and laughter. I'm sure you've got plenty of that!

Pink heart with a Signature: Melodie

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