RevGalBlogPals: A pumpkin/apple Friday Five

I haven’t done this in awhile and there’s not much else I feel like writing about (or, feel free to write about!).

1. How did you celebrate this time of year when you were a child?

Costumes and trick-or-treating. We made our costumes. OK, my Mom made our costumes. (Hi, Mom!) Even though a lot of people were beginning to buy the costume ready-made, we did some pretty elaborate work, but usually with stuff we had around the house.

Since I grew up in rural New York, apple picking and hay rides were also a big thing. Often on REAL farms.

And, since I raised by one of the world’s most interesting and devoted Calvinists (Hi, Dad!), Reformation Sunday was also a big deal. One year, we did a skit about indulgences. It turned into a legendary incident in our church involving a crushed mouse.

2. Do you and/or your family “celebrate” Halloween? Why or why not? And, if you do, has it changed from what you used to do?

I did buy Zora a little costume ($5 at a resale place, cheaper than I could make one): an elephant since it is her funniest animal noise (she holds her lips together and makes a tight raspberry sound). It will fit her this year with the legs and sleeves tucked up, and should fit her next year, too. We’re not sure we’re going to do anything for Halloween with her. We might drive a few suburbs over and take her to my grandparents and aunts and uncles. But, if we don’t do anything, we can just use the costume again next year.

Erik and I have gone for several years to the most awesome halloween party that friends of ours throw, but we might not make it–it’s a Saturday night, 2 hours drive into the city, and I’ve got to be at church the next morning early.

3. Candy apples: do you prefer red cinnamon or caramel covered? Or something else?

Carmel, all the way. Better yet with chocolate.

4.  Pumpkins: Do you make Jack O’Lanterns? Any ideas of what else to do with them?

I haven’t done this in a couple of years, but I can’t wait to do it soon.

Last week, my head of staff pastor took the confirmation class for me (God bless him…), and was teaching them about Christian symbols. On a whim, he tells me, he brought them each a pumpkin and they carved traditional Christian symbols into them. Syncretism at its best!

5. Do you decorate your home for  fall or Halloween? If so, what do you do. Bonus points for pictures.

We live in a run-down old house 3 blocks from a river. This means we have bugs everywhere. That means we have spiders the size of small mice everywhere. If we don’t sweep the cobwebs off our porch once a week, it looks like a Halloween display.

That said, what ON EARTH are some people thinking? There’s someone in my area who has a display in their front yard that includes a realistic severed head with a small electric fountain cycling red water out of the severed neck. Yuck. Things are out of control, people.

5. Do you like pretending to be something different? Does a costume bring out an alternate personality?

I’ll let CS Lewis answer this one (from Mere Christianity, “Let’s Pretend”):

What is the good of pretending to be what you are not? …you know, there are two kinds of pretending. There is the bad kind, where the pretence is there instead of the real thing…But there is also a good kind, where the pretence leads up to the real thing. When you are not feeling particularly friendly, but know you ought to be, the best thing you can do, very often, is to put on a friendly manner and behave as if you were a nicer person than you actually are…Very often the only way to get a quality in reality is to start bahaving as if you already had it. That is why children’s games are so important. They are always pretending to be grown-ups–playing soldiers, playing shop. But all the time, they are hardening their muscles and sharpening their wits so that the pretence of being grown-up helps them to grow up in earnest…the moment you realise, ‘Here I am, dressing up as Christ,’ it is extremely likely that you will see at once come way in which at that moment the pretnse could be made less of a pretence and more of a reality…The Christ Himself, the Son of God who is [hu]man (just like you) and God (just like his Father) is actually already at your side and is already at that moment beginning to turn your pretence into a reality.

Bonus Recipe: Well, it’s not apple or pumpkin, but it is Squash.

I love pureed butternut squash. It’s so easy and so yummy.

Cut one in half, remove the seeds, put it in the oven, cut sides down on a greased sheet, bake at 400 until a skewer goes through easily.

Scoop out the squash and put the chunks in a blender or food processor. Two very different options:

Thyme and Parmesan: Blend the squash with grated parmesan and  dried thyme to taste. Use a little milk to get things moving in the blender if you have to.

Chipotle: Blend the squash with a teaspoon (less or more to taste) of the sauce from one of those little jars of canned chipotle peppers and with a squeeze of lime juice.

Happy fall, everyone!

3 Responses to “RevGalBlogPals: A pumpkin/apple Friday Five”

  1. sally Says:

    excellent piece of syncretism there, and what a great recipe!Good play.

  2. Singing Says:

    Mmmmm…gonna try the squash.

    Severed head with pumping blood? Okay, that is just sick. Yikes!

  3. Meika Says:

    Thanks for the squash recipe! I think I’ll try it out with my next load of squash.

    And seriously, isn’t there some kind of local ordinance about severed heads and blood and keeping displays PG-13 or so? If there isn’t, I’ll sponsor one. Not that I live in your municipality or anything, but that’s just too much. Consider it a public service. Sick.