Hallowe’en

This is the first year we’ve done anything really for Hallowe’en. Although I do love the day, in the UK it’s still sadly rather lacking. At least where I now live… Growing up we used to go out trick or treating and almost every child in the area was out and about having fun. So when I moved to the city, I expected the same; if not more. But no, even with children in the area we only ever get 1, maybe 2 coming to the door.
Every year I dutifully carve my pumpkins, buy sweets and light candles.

So, why is this year any different? My brother is in the UK for the first time in years, that’s why and so I’m taking advantage. We made a pact to dress up too and have a little party complete with watching movies and scaring my boyfriend as much as possible playing the new Aliens game in the dark.

Would I be a cheapskate if I collect the confetti and save it for next year???

The plan is for all of us to carve a pumpkin each. Guess who ended up carving all 4??

Muggings over here.

Ok, due credit where it’s deserved… Boyfriend drew his Oogie Boogie design and left me to gut and carve it (woo, thanks Pete). My brother meanwhile did gut both of his, drew them and then did the main carving and left me with the delicate parts.

Such as the teeth on this one below.

This is the first time I’ve ever seen any other ‘different’ pumpkins here in good ole’ England. Usually I only ever see them on North American blogs… With any luck we’ll begin to see the gorgeous bluey/green knobbly types too.

I went over the top with the sweets… They will last us well into next year.

Copyright 2014 Liz.
All rights reserved. Content created by Liz for Gwirrel’s Garden

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13 thoughts on “Hallowe’en

    • Hi Pam,

      I think it’s very much something particular to certain areas, some more so than others. For example I think here, because the city centre holds a Halloween thing a lot of people go into the city instead but the further out from the centre you go; the more people participate in localised trick-or-treating… At least that’s my reasoning and I may be completely wrong 🙂
      I grew up in a small town around 10 miles away from Sheffield, so it wasn’t a case of just popping into the city for festivities (if there were any back then). And other colleagues at work have said they have a lot around their areas, all of whom live further from the centre??? Maybe it’s just coincidence though.

      Ah, back when I was young we had to use turnips/swedes…. I swear my mum made us do that to punish us but actually perhaps it was because we just didn’t have them in order to buy them.

      Thanks re: Pumpkins. I must admit they were messy this year. I didn’t have time to tidy them very much. But when the lights are out one can’t tell anyway.

  1. Hi Liz,

    Lovely carvings……don’t they take a long time ??

    I have always celebrated Halloween with my children and now Grandchildren.
    This year we celebrated in Spain…..the whole village came out to have some fun. The costumes, decorations, and spookiness were amazing.

    Great post……….

    • Hi Cheryl,

      Not really if I’m honest. Perhaps 15/30 minutes to cut, gut and carve them. But it depends on how intricate they are and how careful you’re being. But once you’ve done them a few times you’ll be more confident and know what you can and cannot get away with. I’d imagine your first one will definitely take much longer than subsequent pumpkins once you get a feel for how they cut and the best knife to use etc.

  2. Halloween is just not the same anymore. Here in Scotland the term Trick or Treat is very new. We used to and still do call it ‘Guisin’ an abbreviation of Disguise. We used to make our lanterns out of turnips, the large variety, which I think is what the English call Swedes.
    We had 6 ‘guisers at the door this year – my youngest niece and 2 of her friends and my oldest niece along with her two friend.
    You did a terrific job with those pumpkins, well done. We’ve got lots of sweets left over too, much to the delight of the youngest niece, means she’ll continue getting her treats for quite some time.

    • Hi Angie,

      Ah, learn something new every day 🙂 Never heard of ‘guising, must admit. I’d say we use both Turnip and Swede, although saying that in shops generally one would buy, say, Swede mash. So perhaps yes, Turnip is out of favour. But I know what you mean 😉
      Anyway, yes I remember one year my mum torturing to make lanterns out of swedes/turnips. It took hours and I will never try it again.

      My Jack Skellington always comes out best. Mainly because I carve him every year and can draw him with my eyes closed (yes, I’m a *little* fanatic about the Nightmare before Christmas. Hides all ‘nightmare’ memorabilia).

  3. Fun party! Our neighborhood is Halloween central – parents drop off van loads of kids to trick or treat since the houses are close together and most people give out really good candy (some even give full size chocolate bars). Many of our neighbors decorate their houses outside with lots of orange lights, or spooky decorations. I had to stay home sick instead of going out with our kids this year, but there’s always next year. My kids are generous enough to share some of their chocolate with me either way 🙂

    • Hi VW,

      Hope you’re feeling better now? So far I’ve dodged various colds and other sickness…. Although I did have to come home early yesterday because I had a bad headache/migraine. Not fun. I decided that when I was having to breathe deeply to stop myself vomiting at my desk that perhaps it was a good time to come home.

      Here we don’t tend to decorate outside our houses for Halloween, it doesn’t seem to be a big thing here in that sense – sort of like Christmas too. I have lights in my window but I don’t have anything external. Some areas will decorate their houses for Christmas, often for charity and people will go round to marvel in the beauty but that’s not very common.

  4. When I was little, many years ago (!) Hallowe’en was never celebrated, and it has only got popular here in the uk over the last 10 years or so. When my own children were little we used to have a Hallowe’en party every year, but there was nothing commercially available and we had to make everything ourselves – which was great fun !
    Your pumpkins look fab… as does the little Milkybar ghost!!

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