September 20, 2011

Now Is the Time to Begin Your Halloween Planning

Sigh. It seems as though summer has flown by us for another year; wasn’t it just Midsummer yesterday, and Memorial Day the week before that? Though many of us will be loathe to see these long, sweltering days end, there is something magical about the palpable change in the air, the feeling of renewal that comes with that change, even if we are entering the dying portion of the seasonal cycle.

The crisp autumn air, the crunching of leaves underfoot, the smell of wood-burning fireplaces…to me, these things bring such happiness. And Samhain! That most magical of holidays, when the veil between the worlds is thinnest, when we celebrate the turning of a new year, when “kids” of all ages have reason to celebrate. And it's never too early to begin your Halloween holiday preparations!

As we near this magical time, it can be hard to reconcile plans (both personal and business) between the sacred and the secular, as well as between the spendy and the thrifty. That said, there are many ways to make Samhain more than just pointed hats and candy –without breaking the bank—at both your home and your store.

For me, decorations area always a great way to set the mood for any holiday season, Samhain included.
  • Pumpkins. A great way to spend time with family, friends, and associates is always at the pumpkin patch, finding that perfect gourd to display, carve, or both. While pumpkins can be found in many places (grocery stores and supermarkets included), I always favor the pumpkin patch because it is generally cheaper, the selection is wider, and it makes for a great activity for everyone.
  • Incense. Smell is one of the first things we notice when we enter a building or home; why not use some that celebrates the season? For a magical, uplifting, and thrifty option, try making your own incense or potpourri.
  • Colors. Colors are a huge part of décor, and I like to use those that are not only traditionally seasonal but also magically appropriate. Silver is great for making connections and bridging the gap (such as with Samhain spirit communications); yellow and gold symbolize the Sun and a fruitful harvest (whether literally or metaphorically).
  • An Altar. Perfect for store or home, a Wheel of the Year altar can be suited to any Sabbat, including Samhain.
Another strong way to connect to the season, to our friends and family, and to our ancestors is through rituals. These make great activities to do alone, to do with friends or family members, or to host as a store activity.

Activities and Parties
There is something about Samhain that just seems to warrant having a party or other event. Looking for ideas? Look no further!
Still looking for more ideas? Check out Samhain Party Hosting Made Easy (