Having raised four children, believe me when I say that Halloween festers up a whole bunch of emotions. While we absolutely love to see our little nuggets prancing around in their favorite costumes, the days before are filled with stress ie. sowing and trying on customs, searching for creative odds and ends, or standing on long lines exchanging last minute costumes…hmmm not so much. So as we wait for this deliciously ghoulish holiday to begin, here are some healthy alternatives to the day’s activities:
If you do have some time to whip up a healthy pizza before, during or after trick or treating try:
5 large rip tomatoes peeled or 1 large can of peeled plum tomatoes
1 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, first cold press
1 tablespoon of basil
1teaspoon of oregano
First, pre-heat oven to 425. Mix tomatoes, basil, oregano, and a few sprinkles of sea salt and 1 tablespoon of the oil in a blender until puree into a sauce. Arrange on dough and pop in oven for about 10 minutes on 425. In meantime, use a ghost cookie cutter and cut out ghost shapes of mozzarella cheese add a green pepper slice or carrot slice for a top hat…ok some ghosts wear hats, right? Pop in the oven until shapes start to resemble a ghost about 5 minutes…. take out of oven an cut some olives for eyes; could be green olives or black olives.
Tomatoes are rich in lycopene, lutein and scientist believe this rich mixture of phytochemicals fight disease as well as serve up a good portion of anti-cancer benefits– not to mention they are an excellent source for healthy eyes. Oregano is about one of the healthiest herbs you can serve your family. It contains vitamins A, B6, K and C as well as minerals such calcium and potassium. Oregano is a great digestive aid. Keep in mind that adding a few drops of oregano oil in your favorite juice each morning helps to boost your immune system. Basil also contains vitamin A and K and they don’t call it Holy Basil for nothing. Ayurvedic medicine has been remedying with basil for thousands of years. It too helps to fight infections and works well to help clear acne due to its anti-inflammatory capabilities and of course, vitamin A, helps to cleanse infected skin, cells.
For dessert, a special treat: Carve an orange jack o lantern…scoop out orange and fill with some organic orange sherbet…great fun watching the sherbet drip through the eyes and mouth! Oranges are very high in vitamin C and quercitin and there is much press regarding oranges’ health benefit in reducing the onset of asthma.
If you are really into this festive holiday, and of course wish to not sleep the night before…. boil eggs, peel and add a ghost face with edible black marker. Eggs are an awesome start to a school day; the protein keeps your child full longer and focused on schoolwork.
Finally, a few treat ideas for bags:
Rice crispy treats
Halloween pencils (unsharpened)
Crazy Halloween erasers
Glowing rubber bracelets
Finally a treat for mom! Don’t know what to do with that left over, carved pumpkin?
Make a promise to yourself after all the day’s activities and the kids are soundly asleep. Go to the bathroom…lock the door and relax with a good lavender soak and apply:
To create a face mask of oatmeal and shredded pumpkin and add a few drops of fish oil and relax with face mask for about 10 minutes.
1 and ½ tablespoons of shredded pumpkin
1 teaspoon of oatmeal (old-fashion)
1 teaspoon of fish oil or if you cringe at the thought of the smell, you can use coconut oil. While the fish oil will help to rebound elasticity to help with wrinkles, coconut oil is a great rejuvenator and skin softener. In fact, put some on your lips to help soothe and keep them moist during sleep.
The pumpkin is high in beta-carotene and aids in washing away dead skin cells, oatmeal helps to cleans and calm the skin.
Rinse and follow with a good night cream of
1 tablespoon of Greek yogurt mixed with 1 teaspoon of coco butter or honey
This will both soften and smooth out wrinkles!
Denise Hajjar, MS