Happy (almost) Halloween.

No need to spend big bucks on this year’s boo fest. Trib Tips will show you some cheap and clever ways to put a new spin on this haunted holiday.

Pretty pumpkins

Pull out your Christmas decorations to create a classy pumpkin display.

Hollow out several pumpkins, then use a drill to make holes throughout. Grab your Christmas lights and poke a light into each hole. Arrange the starry-night pumpkins on your porch for a unique and beautiful display.

Cookie-cutter décor

If you’re looking for a fresh take on pumpkin carving, forget the traditional jack-o-lantern. Buy some Halloween-themed cookie cutters and, using a rubber mallet, pound the shapes through the pumpkin flesh. Depending on how sturdy your cutters are, you may want to place a thick piece of cardboard or other material between the mallet and cutter.

About face

Here’s a versatile mixture that you can tint any way you wish to put some fear in your facial features. Smear it all over your face, or use in dabs.

You’ll need:

1 teaspoon corn starch

1/2 teaspoon water

1/2 teaspoon white shortening or cold cream

2 drops food coloring of your choice

Mix all ingredients until smooth. Apply with a cosmetic sponge or brush. A cotton ball works well, too.

Blood bath

If you’re looking to get the red out for Halloween, try these easy-to-concoct Halloween hemoglobin recipes:

1/2 bottle light corn syrup

Cold cream

Hot water

1 teaspoon liquid dish soap

Red food coloring

Blue or green food coloring

In a small bowl, mix the corn syrup and water (add just a little at a time until you reach the correct consistency). Add a few drops of red food coloring. Use the green/blue to make the mixture darker. Apply cold cream to your skin, then drip, spray or smear the blood mixture.

For a super quick and easy recipe, mix ketchup and face cream.

Have some favorite apps, household hints or savings secrets of your own you’d like to share? Or searching for a solution? We’d love to hear from you. Email Marie Havenga at mhavenga@grandhaventribune.com. Include your name, address and phone number. You may also snail-mail ideas to: Trib Tips, 101 N. Third St., Grand Haven, MI 49417; or call 616-847-2628.

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