It’s almost Halloween! We’ve decided to take a slight break from our normal posting routine and post a few Halloween-themed articles that focus on safe, family fun. Let’s start today by looking at the origins of the holiday and of trick-or-treating. Here are some facts you may not know about our favorite ghoul-filled holiday:
The History of Halloween
Halloween — it’s a strange name for an even stranger holiday but the name itself actually reveals a lot about the holiday’s origins. Halloween’s oldest iteration is found in an ancient Celtic festival called Samhain. The Celts believed on the night of the festival the boundary between the world of the living and the world of the dead was thinned and ghosts roamed the earth. When Christians came and colonized the Celts’ homeland, they feared the festival’s implications. They replaced the pagan Samhain with a Christianized version of the holiday called All Saint’s or All Hallows Day on November 1. The night before this Christian holiday became known as All Hallows Eve and, eventually, Halloween.
The Origin of Trick-or-Treating
Those cute little costumed ghouls running around the neighborhood on Halloween night have extensive historical origins. The History Channel’s website says the costumes came from the pagan part of the holiday, when people initially dressed up to fool the ghosts they believed were roaming the earth.
The treat part comes from Halloween’s religious aspect. According to Today I Found Out, a website dedicated to interesting facts, in the Middle Ages these costumed children began going around to neighbors, offering prayers in exchange for handouts in a practice called souling. Over time, both sides of Halloween mixed together with trick-or-treating morphing into the night of fun and scares it is today.
Homemade Halloween Crafts
Next up, here are some quick and easy homemade Halloween crafts your whole family can enjoy creating:
It’s not just the ghosts and ghouls making Halloween a scary time of year. The pressure of creating original and memorable decorations threatens to take all the fun out of the holiday. But you don’t have to cast a spell to pull it off. Here are some life hacks to help you impress even the harshest of Halloween critics.
Spooky Glowing Ghosts
Hack: Create cool glow-in-the-dark ghosts to make any haunted house or party decoration spook-tacular.
Materials: Balloons, glow sticks, permanent black marker
How-to: Activate a glow stick and slide it into a deflated balloon. Don’t worry if it doesn’t fit all the way. Carefully blow the balloon up before tying it shut. Draw a scary face using the permanent marker. Turn off the lights and watch it glow.
Hack: Glowing eyes are sure to creep out the neighbors and make your house the best on the block.
Materials: Toilet paper or paper towel rolls, glow sticks, pencil, scissors
How-to: Gather up some empty toilet paper rolls. Using a pencil, trace different eye shapes before carefully cutting them out. Activate a glow stick, put it inside the roll, and you’re good to go. Place them in the bushes or behind darkened windows for a fun and creepy view.
Chaotic Crayon Pumpkin
Hack: Blur the line between decoration and art with a unique, colorful pumpkin.
Materials: Pumpkin, crayons, glue, hair dryer
How-to: Start by removing the paper from your crayons, then glue them on the top of the pumpkin, surrounding the stem. Once the glue dries, use a hair dryer to carefully melt the crayons. Use black and red on an orange pumpkin for a traditionally creepy decoration. Or, put a rainbow of shades on a white pumpkin for a burst of color.
Stay tuned to the Thomas Law Offices blog tomorrow for an important post on Halloween safety.