Halloween...yaaay! Oops, did I say that out loud? I don’t remember if the ‘evil’ celebration of the dead is currently considered politically correct or not. I never can keep up with that type of thing, but Halloween has been nothing but good to me.
It was a time of fun and family when I grew up. We got to dress up, drop in on neighbors and get sweet treats, all under the watchful eyes of my parents. We never catered to the vandalism or meanness. I feel warmth at the remembrances.
Of course, that was before my parents divorced. Since I had already left home by then, I don’t know how my siblings’ holidays were affected, but after my divorce, I suddenly realized how much the American family had changed.
Unlike during my mother’s time, it’s hard to properly cultivate the traditions a kid used to grow up expecting. In my childhood, birthdays, Christmas, Easter, Thanksgiving, and Halloween were the big productions they were meant to be and they were all orchestrated from a single home. But divorce fosters lots of changes as an overabundance of grandparents, mothers, fathers and others vie for the holidays.
After my Ex and I each remarried, I came to realize how diverse my children’s holidays were becoming. Too much traveling to other place for my taste but with so many relatives wanting to host a holiday, no single home or set of customs would do.
Eventually we decided to all gather at my Ex’s house for Christmas, and I claimed Halloween.(Let’s face it; nobody really acknowledged it as a major holiday anyway so I found no one in contention for it. Hence every year I held a party. Everyone wore costumes and we went trick or treating and we rallied together in celebration of our family while all other monsters and beasties roamed the night.
As the kids grew, Halloween remained a big production here. I decorated the house, helped them, and soon their friends, costume up. Then they started to invite girlfriends and the party grew. Girl friend’s little brothers needed costumes. Friends of friends, then children of friends all joined in. The party took on a life of its own and continues to this day I will probably forever be remembered as the crazy lady who puts webs on the fences and decorates to excess every single year.
Now my full grown sons bring their families and friends and over the years, anyone who has ever heard of it is invited. Friends and family drop by, pass through, or stay and play. Everyone brings something for the table. They bring games. They take the little ones trick or treating around the neighborhood and we party the night away.
Last year I posted a three part article containing all kinds of decorating tips &recipes, things to do online on MuseItUp Publishing’s blog at:
http://museituppublishing.blogspot.com/2010/10/hosting-halloween-party-by-mary.html if anyone’s interested in checking it out. Fun stuff.
So I hope everyone has a good one this year. Now I need to go web my fence and plant the tombstones while the weather’s a little sunny. Decorating this year’s been a little tricky since the weather’s become such a factor but I’ll adapt. I’m on a mission. *grin*
Here’s a couple of my favorite treats for you:
Recipe for Pumpkin Pie Spice
(take that money grubbing seasonal spice availability)
1/4 cup ground cinnamon
+ 2 Tbsp ground ginger
+ 2 tsp ground cloves
+ 2 tsp ground nutmeg.
Combine all ingredients in a small jar and shake to combine thoroughly. Store covered.
And, for atmosphere: THE RAVEN BY OMNIA
( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JQyGWZWqKT8 )