Wow. I find myself with a whole other blog already written (this is a rare thing, as I am usually scratching my head around Tuesday wondering what crazy idea will form into a coherent one), but, really, how can I pass up celebrating Halloween? Despite my hatred of fall (everything DIES! It gets COLD-for months!!), I love celebrating in this bizarre fall ritual.
"We'll chop off your head, then we'll laugh when you're dead"- 'Scared Shrekless', which premiered last night and amused us immensely (it's on again tomorrow is you missed it!)
Yesterday, Zoe asked me why we put up such scary decorations this time of year. Hmmm. Why do we? What would you say to an 8-year old?
It got me thinking, as, well, I had to answer her, and lucky for her (or unlucky, poor kid), we were in the car for awhile, so we had a chat.
Once upon a time, before there was the internet, TV, and Cartoon Network, people lived in small villages. They lived off the land and took careful notice of the seasons changing and the phases of the moon (just like we do, right honey! (yes, my kids even know what a waxing gibbous is).)
In the fall, crops were harvested, days got shorter and colder, and during this transitional time, people believed there was a thinning between the spirit world and our world. Well, no one wanted ghosts and spooky spirits coming to visit their houses, so people would decorate their houses with scary things to scare the bad spirits away.
I love those cultural nods back to our olden days when we weren't so jaded by our knowledge or blindly condemning due to our fears (it is not witchcraft, it's history).
There is just something about the end of October/beginning of November. Plants die, trees lose their leaves, and it gets you thinking about death. Several differing cultures have their own interesting festivities around now. Samhain, All Souls Day, and especially the Day of the Dead, in which the dead are remembered, is still widely celebrated today. I don't think it's coincidence they're all at this same time of year and yet developed half a world away.
Now for the Americanized celebration: costumes! This year, Sam has decided to be Harry Potter (I even knit him a scarf!), and Zoe is going to be Mew, a cat Pokemon, which is great, as she'll be a pink cat (cool for the girls)- AND- a Pokemon (cool for the boys). I was already 1/2 of the Sweeney Sisters (why? see below), and will still be a few other things still too...
Special kudos to the hosts (and the guests who went ALL OUT) at the annual Mariani Halloween party- this year's theme was "Saturday Night Live". I have included some photos from it, as they're hysterical (I love the Hans und Franz 'convention'), as well as some past favorites.
Look for photos of the Ay, Mama! kids right here on Halloween, as we're showcasing our little spooks on Sunday.