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Samhain or whatever

Posted on 2007.11.01 at 13:36
Current Mood: cheerfulcheerful
Tags: , , , ,
Happy Samhain/Hallowe'en! Hope you all had a lovely day.

I spent the day, as usual, trying to figure out ways to balance my status as a semi-practising, semi-believing Catholic with my deep-seated and lifelong affinity to Paganism, while still keeping the kiddies entertained.

So we collected leaves and other such Autumnal detritus, assisted by the fact that, whoever the appropriate Higher Power, they have provided the most spectacularly beautiful British Autumn I can remember, reminiscent of Bavaria more than the Black Country. (I understand this is the expected outcome when it rains every single solitary day from May 1st through to August 31st. Something to do with sugars.)

Having gathered far more leaves than we could ever hope to use (3 year old was especially enthusiastic about sycamore leaves, I have several tonnes going spare if anyone wants them), we made a quite superb Autumn wreath. Even if I do say so myself. Not that I did anything, of course, it was all the children's work. In theory.

Used some of the spare leaves to stick onto cards, thereby making a pack of environmentally-aware Snap/Old Maid cards. I was gleeful. Kids were disinterested. 6 year old condescended to sit still for long enough to complete one game of Old Maid. I made sure he won, naturally. The cards have, since that moment, lain abandoned and forlorn on the coffee table. Well I'm not moving them. So there.

Having thus appeased the God and Goddess, I reverted to the traditional Christian practices (hah!) of carving a pumpkin, making a hallowe'en cake (brilliantly decorated, and this time it actually was down to the little treasures) and having ghoulishly themed party food. On the menu:

bread and slime (butter with green food colouring. Seriously, you try eating green bread, it's the weirdest feeling)
giant toadspawn (mozzarella slices with strategically placed olives)
vegetables of blood (cherry tomatoes and sliced red pepper)
spooky sausages (just sausages with a spooky name!)
and a few nibbles. And the above mentioned cake.

Fed the trick-or-treaters of the entire country. I'm confident some came twice, and I have a suspicion one boy managed 3 visits by tagging along with different groups! Gotta admire the enterprise. I personally (and, I guess, rather stuffily) don't really approve of trick-or-treating, for all sorts of reasons. It's commercialised a festival that had managed to retain its essence until British children started watching American telly and realised there was chocolate to be had. It's intimidating for those who are alone or unconfident for whatever reason, and it's a temptation for young children to put themselves in dangerous situations. To name but 3.

However, because double standards are my life, I invariably buy mountains of sugary snacks to dole out to the savvy kids who must be forming orderly queues down the street, to judge by their frequency of arrival. But my kids (who aren't allowed out themselves) take great pleasure from answering the door to assorted ghosts, witches etc (we had a fantastic Dracula last night), and trying to work out if they know the child in question. Which they do, more often than not.

Rounded off the night by resurrecting an annual event from my childhood. You switch off all the lights, go into each room of the house (with a candle, ideally, in order to avoid fatal falls over scattered toys)and shout and scream into each room to scare away any lurking ghosties or evil spirits that might have taken up residence in the toy box or the shower. One final game - Granny's Footsteps, at the request of six year old, and that was Samhowe'en sorted for another year.

While I'm here, an apology. I was pretty much off the comm for a week during half-term, kids being remorselessly present, and OH having decided that was the best time to develop man-flu. I am trying to catch up, with mixed success, but if you've written something and I haven't commented, it's just because I haven't got there yet. It's good for me, because I know I've got loads of undiscovered jewels just lying there waiting for me to dig them up. :DD


magenta_blue at 2007-11-05 17:52 (UTC) (Link)
I absolutely love your Halloween! I meant to say when I first read this, but wasn't logged in, and then sadly trundled off in some opposite direction, but here I am!

Is it really something to do with sugars? As you are right, it has been totally glorious colours out there. And an autumn wreath! What a fab idea of what to do with leaves! I usually collect them with vague ideas of artiness, and then they, along with conkers, get spread all over my desk and make everything all crumbly. A wreath sounds a lot more interesting. Love the fact you enjoyed the Snap while your kids were disinterested! Ah bless 'em!

And you had proper Halloween food! The spooky sausages sound in particular a cunning idea. Can you have spooky soup as well? I might make spooky soup tonight... *g*
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