Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Was Halloween Scary For You?

Halloween is fast approaching. What do you remember about the Halloween celebrations in your life?
I remember trick-or-treating in our small town. You would get apples and popcorn balls and assorted candy. At the home of my great aunt and uncle they gave out a gingersnap cookie. We took a clean pillowcase to carry our treats in. We never worried about someone trying to poison us or hurt us. The worst that might happen was being asked to do a trick before we could get a treat. I’m not very good at doing tricks. At our church there would be a party with a spook alley made in the basement. You got a little scared, but it was never gruesome. Costumes were always put together or home-sewn. You could be a witch with a black dress and a purchased black hat and maybe a broom; or you could be a tramp wearing worn out clothes, putting a colorful large handkerchief on the end of a stick and putting cold cream and black soot on your face.
Write down the kinds of treats you remember for Halloween. What kinds of treats have you made for parties? Including the recipes may make it especially nice for your children or grandchildren when some day they want to make the same treat. Write down how you decorated your home and your yard. Describe the jack-o-lanterns you made. Write down the costumes you wore and how you created them. Include pictures.
Did you ever help create a spook alley or a haunted house? What did you do to make it scary? How did people react to it? My daughter and I helped created a haunted house in the building next door to our house. We knew everything that was done to give the scary effects. My daughter dressed up and played the part of a widow telling spooky stories. It didn’t seem that scary when created, but some children ended up crying and needed to be comforted and reassured. My daughter discovered that some of her classmates at school did not recognize her, and they were very surprised to find out that she had played the part of the widow. We took pictures and made a slideshow video.
Write down how different Halloween was for you as a child and how it is for your children and grandchildren. If your parents or grandparents are still alive, ask them what Halloween was like for them and write it down for your children and grandchildren.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Harvest Time Memories

The fall of the year has always been a busy time for me. Growing a garden and then trying to preserve the produce from that garden takes a lot of time. It is especially challenging when the temperature drops 30 degrees in one day. All of a sudden tomatoes, grapes, and squash are in danger of freezing. So, my plans change and I'm picking green tomatoes and grapes and the squash that are big enough to eat until it is dark. Then I covered the remaining plants and hope they make it through the frost. Next week will be warm again. But now the grapes need to be made into juice or jam. The tomatoes should be spread out so they will ripen. I should make some zuchinni bread with some of the squash.
Every year the harvest is challenging. There is a lot of extra work to do in a very short period of time. Growing up I remember helping my mother as she canned peaches and apricots and pears. She made jams and butters from the fruit. She canned tomatoes, green beans and squash. She even made green tomato preserves when a frost came too soon for the tomatoes to ripen.
What kinds of things do you remember from the harvest times in your life? Did you enjoy fresh picked fruits and vegetables? Did you help can, dry or freeze fruits or vegetables for the winter? Did snow and cold come suddenly or gradually? Did you welcome the cooler weather or did you hate to see summer go?
Record in your life story the things about harvest time that you remember. Maybe you could even include a recipe for jam or jelly you made that was especially good. Write about the feelings you had during this busy time of year.

Personal Creations