Since I was a child, my favourite month of the year has always been October. Autumn has kicked into high gear, it’s almost Halloween, and Thanksgiving and Christmas were to follow afterwards. It always felt like a quiet rush all month, of excitement and contentment in the crunchy-leafed chill. And it always seemed magical, somehow, from the vivid leaves to the shadows and early dark of Halloween night.
Halloween. The great big climax of my favourite month.
Samhain is the time of year for the last harvest, and the time where the veil between our world and the spirit world is so thin that our ancestors can return to visit. It is a time for celebrating the cycle of birth, death, and rebirth, the season of introspection, and the harvesting of Earth’s bounty.
I have some ideas for Samhain this year. I would love to host a mute supper, but I have absolutely no place where I can do it. I live with my two best friends and our apartment is absolutely tiny and cluttered. So, the plan for this year is to give the apartment a good scrubbing and smudging. I will also be making a dinner and rosemary remembrance cookies (or a cake) for my ancestors.
For the remembering of the ancestors, I have photos of my dear Dad and Mom who passed away in 2009 and 2012, respectively. I’m currently living in a very small space with two other women, but I will still be creating a tiny ancestral altar with the photos, a pretty skull and a candle, and small items representing my parents’ personalities (such as a spool of red sewing thread for my Mom to represent both her favourite hobby and favourite colour, and a baseball to represent my Dad’s lifelong passion for the sport).
A really good idea I discovered from another PBP poster’s blog is an ancestral toast. Make a cup of your favourite drink – alcoholic or not, but be careful if it IS boozey – toast your ancestors, and share some stories and memories about them. Take another drink and repeat. I would like to make some apple cider or lassi for this.
What about the dinner menu? Do you have any ideas? What have you done in the past?
My ideas for the dinner menu are inspired by this site: Recipes for a Pagan Soul.
Butternut squash soup
Autumn butter on some kind of seed-y bread like rye with caraway.
Homemade pumpkin ice cream
The remembrance cookies mentioned above
Love and light,