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Friday, October 14, 2011

Witches of Halloween Day 15, my very special Halloween Memory

Special thanks to Lyn of Witch's Blog for this wonderful opportunity.

I am a dyed in the wool, Halloween-aholic, solitary witch and a Trick or Treat ophile. I do know that my love of the end days of October began as a child and I have not in all these decades since missed a single opportunity to "over do" it in the name of a true believer in the Magick of Halloween.

I also know that some folks in the pagan world don't think that the spiritual and holiday at this time of year have any place together. You have that right to believe that. Why would I argue? But I am sure that there is plenty of room for both...especially in my mind, heart and belief system. Having said that I would like to share the most memorable Halloween of my 1950's childhood.

Marilyn's mother had hand drawn the invitations to the party. She wanted everything to be perfect for us. I could hardly wait. It was only going to be the girls from the Bluebird group coming together for this party so we didn't have to worry about those rat fink boys messing it up. They all had cooties, pinched and hit and just begged to be kicked. I of course always accomodated them with a good aimed kick from my saddle oxford clad feet. Boys were icky except for Marilyn's older brother who looked like Ricky Nelson and was dreamy.

My Mother worked very hard on my costume. I insisted I did not want one of those ugly costumes from Woolworth. I had tried one the year before and the plastic mask with the metal brads holding the elastic cord had cut my cheek and I couldn't see where I was going. Besides, I don't think I even looked like the witch from Snow White with that apron looking dress on. So Mom said if I wasn't going to make it easy on her, then she got to pick what I was to be. And she decided I was to be a gypsy.

So we looked through my sister's hand me downs and found a ruffled white blouse, three sizes to big for me but Mom began to take it in and we made plans to go to Woolworth on Saturday to get some material for the scarf and skirt for my gypsy costume. She was going to let me wear some of her jewelry and I was so pleased and very honored that I was old enough for her to trust me with her things. After all I was 7 and a big girl now.

The day of the party I couldn't sit still. It was better than Christmas. We were going to have a sit down supper and Marilyn had told us some of the wonderful things we were to have. Hamburgers, chips and ice cream sundaes. Her Mom had ordered some real Hamburger buns from the cafe on Central and they were probably going to be better than the ones I tried last month when we went shopping for my new school shoes. Anyway Marilyn had also told us how the box of decorations had come in the mail. Cats, witches, skeletons and streamers for miles and nuts cups with candy and matching plates and napkins. Her Mom had even decorated the chairs. I had never been to a party like that. Well, none of us had.

I am here to tell you that on that evening when I walked in Marilyn's house I was in awe, practically dumbstruck. It was like a Halloween Palace in her playroom. Candles lit everywhere. Bowls of candy and nuts. Her Mom had decorated the middle of the ceiling with wonders of black and orange and the streamers tented the ceiling. The table sat under the bower made by the decorations and we had miniature hamburgers and hotdogs...perfect little bundles of kid size joy. She had even bought some real potato chips from the cafe. And Marilyn had not exaggerated, even if the covered chairs scratched and crinkled with every move everything matched and was perfect. The games we played even came from the Dennison company and were fabulous.

We went through a haunted house where we had to touch terrible, scary and icky things. And Marlilyn's older brother scared us by grabbing us as we started out of the haunted house. He was so dreamy and he touched me. Then we tried to take bites out of apples on a string. Passed an orange tucked under our chin from girl to girl not using our hands in a relay game. We laughed so much our cheeks hurt. Then we had our fortunes told by a real fortune teller. (At least I thought she was until I saw her one day in the drug store behind the counter selling makeup.) I found out I was going to have 5 children and that I would be an actress and go to Hollywood and Rin Tin Tin would be my next door neighbor. Wow, imagine that.

When my Mom came to pick me up, I told her I was never going to forget what that night felt like. It was the best night of my life. And I swore that I was always going to remember the magick that Marilyn's Mom had made for us forever.

Well, I must say that I must have cursed myself really good that night, because I have never lost the exhileration and tummy tickling sense of wonder and awe at Halloween. I always feel wonderfully delighted by the scary, the fun, the wonder, the "what if's" that Halloween presents. I have always kept the holiday as magickally as I could. I believe that kids deserve to have the wonder and awe of something special at Halloween. So for lo these many moons, I have, whenever possible, given kids within my sphere of influence a treat for a trick.......Happy Halloween lovelies.


  1. oh my god - how wonderful is this post!! Your memory is amazing. I felt like I was there - a dreamy older brother, real chips. The fortune teller!!! A party like that back would have been so unusual - no wonder you remember all the details. For some reason Halloween memories seem to last. For instance, I remember my mother dressing me like a geisha, my sister getting me a "morticia" wig that was obviously Lily Munster. The nerve!

    This was so much fun to read. I am going to read it again.

  2. What a terrific memory of being a child in the 50s. I don't have very many memories of being young and none of Halloween except that I usually spent the holiday being sick. I remember loving the costumes and the candy. Most of my Halloween memories are as an adult. I love getting into costume and the decorating and the trick or treaters. Only two more weeks...I can't wait.

  3. What a nice post! I was a little trick or treater in the 50's. How exciting it was to decide what we were going to be for Halloween with things we had at home to make our costumes.
    Sweet memories!

  4. What a beautiful memory of Halloween. It was so sweet that her mother did so much to give you girls such an enchanting party.

    Your descriptions are so clear Linda, I could see everything in my mind as if I were there. I even felt the crunching crinkling decorations on the chair. Have a wonderful Halloween season, my friend.

  5. Aww, that sounds like such a wonderful party. And how lovely of your friend's mum to have gone to so much effort. I'm sure she'd be thrilled to know you still remembered it so fondly!

  6. Awesome post! What a wonderful memory! Thank you for remembering it for us.
    Have a great day.
    Always, Queenie

  7. Awesome party...I don't remember anything about Halloween except a couple teenage times walking the streets of our little town...


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