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This year for Savannah’s 7th birthday she asked me if we could do a Hallowe’en theme since I am typically away on Oct 31st.  Well, if you know me…you know I will do almost ANYTHING these girls ask me to do!!  I went all out for her.

halloween decor, halloween tablescape

Savannah asked me, “Why do we celebrate Hallowe’en Nana?” Admittedly, I couldn’t give her much information other than it’s a night about ghosts and goblins, trick or treating, pumpkin carving and getting dressed up…oh and let’s not forget the fact that we send our little ones up to complete strangers homes and let them take candy! LOL  As for the history, the facts behind Hallowe’en and the traditions we follow?  I’ve really had absolutely no idea. I just go with the flow and stick with the standard traditions without any explanation. halloween decor, halloween tablescapeTo me, ignorance has been bliss. I am easily frightened! I can’t watch commercials for scary movies never mind actually going to see one! The last creepy movie I saw was Nightmare on Elm Street. I left part way through and was looking over my shoulder for months. I avoid them at all costs….I mean, I won’t even watch CSI!

halloween decor, halloween tablescape

I love these little plates. I bought them as soon as HomeSense started stocking their Hallowe’en supplies!! The small skulls are from Michaels. I bought a bag of them for around $5.00

halloween decor, halloween tablescape

Did you know Hallowe’en is more than 2000 years old?  Hallowe’en originated back to the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain (pronounced sow-in). The Celtics, who lived 2,000 years ago in the area that is now Ireland, the United Kingdom and northern France, celebrated their new year on November 1. Researchers believe that Samhain was also a time for communing with the dead.halloween decor, halloween tablescapeI will need to try this Witches Brew recipe at my next dinner party.

The tradition of trick or treating dates back to the middle ages when poor citizens would hide behind a mask (called gussing, muming or souling) and go door to door and beg for food. At least as far back as the 15th century, among Christians, there had been a custom of sharing soul cakes at Allhallowtide (October 31 through November 2). People would visit houses and take soul cakes, either as representatives of the dead or in return for praying for their souls.halloween decor, halloween tablescapeSome research suggests Halloween was believed to be a time when ghosts came back to the earthly world.  People were afraid to leave their homes. They’d wear masks in order to avoid being recognized by the ghosts.

halloween decor, halloween tablescape

Just hangin’ around.

halloween decor, halloween tablescape

Creepiest photos ever! Lilah didn’t like them at all!

We are all familiar with the pumpkin carving tradition. But, it turns out the tradition actually started with turnip carving. People would hollow out turnips, carve a representation of the human face into them, and then put a candle inside. Children would carry these lanterns when going door to door to beg for “soul cakes.” And, sure enough, it didn’t take long for Halloween pranksters to carve spooky faces into the turnip in order to scare elders. Irish immigrants eventually brought the tradition to America, where more commonly available pumpkins were used.halloween decor, halloween tablescape

halloween decor, halloween tablescape

Battery operated candles are a must when the little ones are around. After dinner, the girls turned off all the lights and held these candles under their chins and told ghost stories. I wish I had recorded the stories. They were super cute. The girls then passed the candle to each of us and we all had to tell a ghost story as well.

halloween decor, halloween tablescape

In the late 1800s, pranks were an incredibly popular part of the Halloween holiday. Common pranks included egging houses, tipping over outhouses, and opening up farmers’ gates. However, by the 1930s, the “trick” part of trick-or-treat started to get a little too out of control. So, parents and town leaders shifted the focus to just the candy and costumes. Smart move.

halloween decor, halloween tablescape

The keeper of the rye my kind of guy!

From coast to coast, approximately 3,734,400 Canadian children from about 5  to 14 years old will disregard all the general don’ts of childhood. For this one night a year, kindergarten children to young high-schoolers get to…. walk in the dark, talk to strangers, stay up late on a school night, scare each other and as a bonus, they get free candy.

Halloween is scary business and its popularity is creepily climbing, with children and adults alike. After Christmas and back to school, it is Canada’s third most important retail season!

Canada’s candy crazy households plan to spend an average of $75 to provide sweets and shivers to superheroes, princesses and goblins.  The majority, if not all of their entire budget will be spent on treats. Their spending also includes dressing their pumpkin, their home, their children, themselves and even their pets.
All in all, Savannah had a great day. She had her birthday party with her friends in the afternoon, then the family dinner party at night…and I quote “Nana, this was my best birthday so far”.


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