Have you been boo-ed? If so, you might be terribly overwhelmed right now trying to figure out what to do next. Do you one-up the neighbor that boo-ed you and try to make the ultimate boo basket for the next boo? Do you step it down a notch? Or do you stop the cycle all together? Guess what? This process doesn’t have to be overwhelming. You can find simple ideas for a You’ve Been Boo-ed Basket that match your consumer values! I have a bunch of fun ideas for you right here.
First, I need to tell you about my own experience being boo-ed.
Why I Have a Love/ Hate Relationship with The You’ve Been Boo-ed Movement
Um, do I even really need to explain my feelings to my long time readers?
If you’ve been here long, you know that I’m a cheap minimalist who also happens to be an environmentalist who supports conscious consumerism. If I had more energy (and less kids), I’d be a zero waster to minimize my ecological footprint. To say I don’t like “stuff” is an understatement.
Related Post: 4 Reasons Why I Became a Minimalist
You can imagine how frustrated I get when my kids get stupid little trinkets. Yes, I feel like a mean mom writing this, but seriously I hate all those little pieces of junk that come in birthday party treat bags that the kids ultimately forget about and break 30 minutes later. I hate that money and resources are wasted on this crap that ends up in a landfill. I also hate that it teaches our kids to find happiness in material possessions instead of finding happiness inside themselves.
Related Post: How Minimalism Can Save You Money
While I feel strongly about this, I try not to project those feelings onto my kids. When they receive items like this I let them enjoy the moment. I let them play with them for the small amount of time that they choose to give to those trinkets then I toss them in the trash if broken or stash them in a treat bag for Christmas stockings or to pass on to other kids.
My kids may not know that I hate these useless items, but they do know that I refuse to spend my money on them. There are some principals we have in life, and this is one of mine. I strongly refuse to spend our money on crap that is destined for a landfill.
This is where my love for the You’ve Been Boo-ed Basket comes in. Since I refuse to buy my kids this kind of junk, they absolutely love it when they get it!
We were boo-ed a few years ago with probably $10-20 worth of Dollar Tree or Target Dollar Spot items. To the neighbor or friend who boo-ed us, thank you! Seriously. My kids had the time of their lives with it, and they especially loved the opportunity to “Boo” two other neighbors. I don’t want this rant to be seen as me not enjoying our boo baskets. We truly do enjoy these gifts when they are given to us.
To me, the most joyful part of receiving the “You’ve Been Boo-ed” gift is passing it on to another neighbor or friend. However, when talking to a few other moms, I realized that I wasn’t alone when it came to my anxiety over the Boo Basket. So many of us have no idea what to put in a you’ve been boo-ed basket that aligns with our simple living and conscious consumerism ideals.
That got me thinking, surely I’m not alone! If three of the moms I talked to in the last week had this same thought, you just might too! At the end of this post I’ve listed some inexpensive and easy ideas for you to put into a you’ve been boo-ed basket.
First, I have some FAQ about “You’ve Been Boo-ed” to help you understand what I’m talking about in this post.
Print your own “You’ve Been Boo-ed” Signs
Click here to download my printable—-> “You’ve Been Boo-ed”
I specifically made this printable to give busy moms an option to not boo someone. Here is your official permission to not boo someone even if you’ve been boo-ed!
What Does “You’ve Been Boo-ed” Mean?
“You’ve been boo-ed” means that someone has brought a special surprise to your house and boo-ed you! It’s supposed to be a surprise as to who boo-ed you. After you have been boo-ed you keep the tradition going by boo-ing two other neighbors or friends. It’s like a chain letter, but with goodies.
Do you have to pass on the “You’ve Been Boo-ed” tradition?
Absolutely not! If you don’t feel like booing someone, don’t do it.
If you feel like giving a little Halloween treat without making this a perpetual gift train, try this cute little printable—-> Download the printable here.
How Do You Boo Someone?
Anyone can start it! You don’t have to be boo-ed first. This year I saw a ton of ready made “You’ve Been Boo’ed” items at Target and Walmart. I saw kits that included all the instructions. If you don’t want to buy one, and really you shouldn’t waste your money on ready made ones, you can find a ton of You’ve Been Boo-ed printables online if you don’t jive with mine.
What is a Boo Bag? What is a Boo Basket?
A boo bag or a boo basket is anything you make it! In fact, it doesn’t even have to be a bag or a basket. You can even use a reusable tin. One year someone gave us a marigold in a terra cotta planter. Talk about adorable.
What to Put in a You’ve Been Boo-ed Basket
Here’s where things get a little complicated. You can put anything you want in a boo basket. However, modern mom culture is all about one up-ing each other and spending money we don’t have (or shouldn’t spend) to impress each other.
I’m super lucky to have amazing mom friends who don’t buy into this culture. None of us one up each other and none of us spend money unwisely to impress the other ones. I honestly think this is because my friends are super cool people who are genuinely happy with who they are as people and don’t feel the need to do this kind of crap.
That’s how I want you to feel too. You should feel worthy enough to just be yourself and do whatever you want with the boo basket. Don’t feel the pressure to make the ultimate boo basket. I’ve seen the Pinterest posts and that pressure is out there on social media. Don’t let it influence you. You can put together a super simple boo basket on a budget. The next section has my favorite ideas for simple boo basket ideas on a budget.
6 Simple “You’ve Been Boo-ed” Basket Ideas on a Budget
- Bake cookies, cupcakes, or other spooky baked goods
- Buy a package of Halloween cookies (Trader Joe’s has a ton) and put them into individual bags
- Buy 2 Halloween themed donuts from Dunkin Donuts or your favorite local donut shop
- Make a classic Halloween popcorn hand with a spider ring (remember those things made from clear gloves? We loved those as kids)
- Buy two small pumpkins (usually under $1) and supply some paint so kids can paint their own pumpkins
- Recycle the candy you already have in the house. Let’s be real, you know your kids are already getting it from all sorts of places as soon as October begins.
How we Boo-ed two neighbors for a grand total of $5
We made boxed cookies and put them into these cute little boxes from Target. The cookie mix was around $3 and the boxes were $1 each.
I could have saved even more money by baking the cookies from scratch, but that would have been really scary. We all know that baking isn’t my strong suit (edited to add- since the pandemic, I’ve actually started baking. Woot woot. Anyone can learn apparently).
So there you have it! You can get in on the “You’ve Been Boo-ed” festivities even if you don’t want to buy into consumer culture.
You don’t have to boo anyone
Please know that it’s completely okay to just say no and let the tradition die with you.
No one is judging you for it! As moms, we have enough going on. There shouldn’t be pressure to make copies of the You’ve Been Boo-ed sign and put together two gifts to pass onto neighbors. It’s a fun tradition, but it isn’t one that should stress you out or make you spend money you don’t want to spend.
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