Fall and Halloween Fun

I am not crazy about Halloween. But when I was a kid, it seemed only to be a fun time when I collected lots of candy. When raising our five children, we celebrated Halloween,

All dressed-up to go.

but never considered going out and buying costumes. It was always,” make them.” And we’d drag boxes of stuff out from other years and, well, I confess the house was a mess for weeks as the kids designed their own costumes. Somehow I couldn’t get very excited about this, although my husband was much more creative in helping the children with ideas.

As a kid, I lived in a neighborhood where we walked by ourselves from house to house and there was never any thought of our safety. I remember my mom preparing about one hundred treats tied in napkins and they were spread over our dining room table waiting for Halloween night and the many knocks that would come on our front door. I don’t remember going out and playing tricks on anyone. That came later!

It seems now, Halloween isn’t as safe, even though the tricks played when I was a teenager are not being done today. One year, on the day after, there was quite a fuss being

Just a little bear.

made at High School because an out house had somehow been trucked to and left on the school grounds. How it was done, no one was sure. It wasn’t Halloween without a lot of “soaping” being done, and the streaming of TP everywhere. The targets for many “soapers” were the school windows. The soap was quite easy to remove, but look out if paraffin was used. I decided it would be fun to soap my boyfriend’s house windows and covered pretty well the windows in their French doors, but then, I was caught. That took all the fun out of it. By the way, my boyfriend had to clean the windows the next day. He still married me.

Living in the country, we weren’t on the roads that much. Our celebrating was done in the hall of the church, where everyone marched around in a circle while judges picked costumes fitting certain categories, the prettiest, the ugliest, and the most original. One

Even the kids pet gets involved.

Halloween my Uncle Harold made robot costumes for my brother, Don, and my now husband, Burl. Made of cardboard and wood strips, the guys wore them to several church events and won each time. Of course, much of the fun was guessing who the people were behind the masks. The evening wasn’t complete without bobbing for apples which floated in a big wash tub. My husband remembers the time his mother and Aunt Florence had a hilarious time dressing him as a girl. He was just plain embarrassed. But his mom and aunt had fun. Our grandson, recently, told his mom, “I don’t want to dress up like a skunk this year.” It seems he’s already out-grown that kid stuff and instead is dressing like his favorite cartoon character, “Arnold.”

I especially like the harvest festivals being held everywhere. The pumpkin patch, corn maze and hayrides make a great way to celebrate this beautiful time of the year. In other countries, bonfires are included in the festivities and sometimes fire works. Carved pumpkins and corn stalks find their way on many porches. Sounds quite harmless, except there is an aspect of the holiday where the scary dress, ghosts and haunted houses bring out another side. Some cultures shun Halloween as being a celebration of evil.

So how should Christians feel about dressing up in costume and having fun when some believe it is a satanic holiday established to worship evil spirits and promote darkness and wickedness?  Many churches have looked for alternative ways to celebrate and no longer

Who’s behind the mask?

call their event Halloween. Many events have been turned into a worthy cause as those attending are asked to bring along canned goods for a food bank. To keep children from going to homes where they are not known, a church has invited kids to pick up their treats by going to decorated cars in the church parking lot. At these “Trunk or Treat” events the car trunks overflow with goodies. One church’s invitation invites attendees to dress in costume but to “Dress if you dare but please don’t scare.”

The holiday does have pagan origins. Many feel that children can have fun dressing up in festive costumes and indulging in yummy treats while not becoming involved in the darker aspect of the day.There are things that should be avoided by Christians. While taking part in Halloween, their attitude, dress, and most importantly, their behavior should still reflect Who they serve. Can we overcome evil with good, by setting an example before others and make the most of every opportunity as the Bible says? Some hand out tracts along with the Halloween candy. Even so, some Christians believe doing these things is compromising our faith and think it is far better to ignore the holiday than take a chance on causing division in the church.  I’d love to hear your opinion on this subject. Leave your comment here at my blog site and I’m hoping you’ll  become a follower of shirlandyou..

11 thoughts on “Fall and Halloween Fun

  1. I enjoy Halloween especially making the costumes and decorating. It does seem different than years ago but all things change with time and technology. I think of it as a fun event and keep it seperate from religion.

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    • Hi Connie: You and your husband are naturals for dressing up. I know that, and our friendship is only beginning. Those little performances you do, bring laughter to the heart. Fun and pranks come natural to you, qualities that make your “Flea Circus” a great one. Keep it up!

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  2. Hi Shirley,
    I never looked at Halloween as anything but a night of fun for children and adults. Dressing up can be fun for everyone and you can make a very positive experience out of it. It is like anything else in life….it is what you make out of it….your attitude and always keeping your eye on Jesus, never letting anything get in the way of your own religious beliefs. Thank you for sharing your Halloween experiences. I think it is funny how you soaped the windows and Burl had to clean them off! LOL I can honestly say that I never pulled any pranks on Halloween. I do remember my Grandmother telling me a story about how someone that she knew took apart an entire horse drawn wagon and brought it (piece by piece) up into the loft of the barn; and then put it all back together again!! Grandma also told me about how another relative found his car filled to the top with leaves….and he was all dressed up and ready to go out on a date! Yes, I am thinking now…and I am aware of lots of different pranks that have been pulled….some innocent and funny….others annoying and not so much fun for anyone. In the past, my son has had great fun “haunting our front yard” with his friends. It seems that when kids outgrow trick or treat, then they decide that tricks are much more fun!! When ghouls hide underneath vehicles with chain saws (no blades) and come jumping out from behind trees, it is sure to send the trick-or-treaters running out of your yard…and then they sending their friends over for a good scare!! As I write this, we are all readied and awaiting the approaching storm, which has been called “Frankenstorm”. Each year, for the past three years, we have had a bad storm in our area, just before Halloween. Last year we had a very bad snow storm and they year before, it was Hurricane Irene….and now Hurricane Sandy. I am praying that everyone will stay safe and that this Halloween will be a happy one, once the storm has passed.

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    • What a wonderful comment. Do you suppose the out house that ended up at the High School was brought there piece by piece, like the farm wagon was? Can’t imagine trying to clean up leaves from inside an automobile. Oh, well, we’re all pulled some pranks we wouldn’t think of doing now. Do you suppose it has to do with the teen years? Thanks for writing.

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  3. Shirl, loved your comments on Halloween. It did bring back many memories of “FUN” Halloween nights. I always think of Sport Lynn in Sweet
    Valley. We were all scared t
    o death of him, but always knocked on his door and ran as fast as we could before he could see who we were>W e had such fun those days, the windows we soaped, the late Mrs. Turner would go wash the next day so we weren’t in trouble, those were the days. It never occured to us that is was satanic, as you said, our churches hosted halloween parties, all in good intentions. Thanks for the memories. Loved the soaping of “your boyfriends house”.

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    • What fun to hear you reminisce about Halloween in Sweet Valley.I’d almost forgotten the name Sport Lynn, but remember him also. That was an era when pranks played a big part in Halloween. Most always, harmless ones. Thanks for writing Jean.

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  4. Ephesian 5:7-12 Therefore do not become partners with them; for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light( for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true), and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord.Take no part in the unfruitful works.
    What would Jesus Do

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  5. I have fond memories of Halloween growing up…at church I always won bobbing for apples cause I would go straight to the bottom of the tub…won for the funniest or most original at Ross Elementary when my best GF and I went back to back in a pair of her fathers overalls. We had to walk there and I was blind because I was the hump in her back. The funniest part was when we fell at the top of the hill at Charlie Longs house and we were laughing so hard it took us forever to get up….we did the homemade costumes also and there must have been 20 of us on one porch and the guy said…I don’t know who any of you are except for the hobo in the back…that’s a Haines…I bolted out…how do you know…?
    His reply…”I’ve seen that Hobo costume for the last 20 yrs”.

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    • Oh, Karen, I laughed when I read your comments. You have some terrific Halloween memories of Sweet Valley, when costumes were homemade and everyone had lots of fun. Certainly glad you didn’t drown when bobbing for apples, you must have been wet from head to toe. Thanks for writing, I wait for your comments each week. God bless you.

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      • My reply didn’t make it till the end of the week…we were hit pretty hard by Hurricane Sandy…my electric was restored fairly early (only three days without)…many in my area are still without even today (day 7)…we were having church service yesterday even without electric but it must have come on sometime during the night…we had 5 families in attendance still without power…I wrote a thank you to “Pike” a company out of NC that came to help us…I’m so greatful to them…they came all that way and have worked around the clock. People had roofs come off…houses split in two…basements flooded…trees down that could have fallen into homes but didn’t…God was with us all…He truely is an awesome God…!!

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