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Winter is coming - and so are a bunch of holidays. Some, like Halloween, are secular (or anti-religious, depending on who you ask) Others, like Christmas, have religious origins (Pagan or Christian, depending on who you ask) but have become secularized for many. What holidays do you celebrate? How do you do it? Or if not, why, and do you do anything else instead?
The only reason I am posting this on FJ is that I thought the "victim" was a dead ringer for a Dugger girl. http://p.nytimes.com/email/re?location=pMJKdIFVI6pZnDLDb4IjkAgRrv47iu/5LFar6ndMcSCA56RW6a+R3diyptViQnISZ8od2JjygdNtnFSU4Z84Uzlak2eDNw4jjfp5ooUCIYZ5vhUDI9BOZVKi+9n+Zv0/HsrYOdcOfOGKj3Ddln2LQzk1vS8GJ+3Fm/zxSJKty7k=&campaign_id=58&instance_id=5077&segment_id=7222&user_id=d4dc5c5c0807209dd171fc9bfb2401ea&regi_id=6373195520181031 Also it's kind of funny.
I remember being about two years old (I have a long memory) and watching my dad plug in Christmas lights. That was probably the last year our family celebrated Christmas. Both my parents grew up celebrating holidays like most of middle-class America, but as they began their slide into fundie-dom they started reading tracts and booklets about the evils of holidays. They believed that Christmas, Easter, and Halloween were evil throwbacks to paganism that had been perpetuated by the Catholics (who, of course, weren't "real Christians"). I'm linking here to something similar to the many booklets we had around the house: http://blowthetrumpet.org/AChristmasDefenseHowGodsPeopleJustifySin.htm This refusal to celebrate holidays set my family apart, even from the fundamentalist Christians we associated with, and definitely caused a lot of confusion when people casually asked us kids what we were doing for Christmas, and we told them we didn't "do Christmas." We got asked a lot if we were Jehovah's Witnesses, since that's who usually comes to mind as not celebrating holidays. Sometimes people asked if my parents were Christian, because the idea of a Christian not celebrating Christmas was so astonishing. Birthdays were only grudgingly allowed: we normally had just a family gathering, similar to the Maxwells' descriptions of their birthday celebration. It was often pointed out that the only birthdays mentioned in the Bible were the birthdays of evil men (Pharaoh and Herod). Also it was seen as being likely to draw to much attention to one person and make them self-centered. This story has a bit of a happy ending, at least for me. After I left home, I embraced holidays with a vengeance. Christmas was amazing, my children got Easter baskets from my in-laws, Halloween was a pure delight of dressing my kids and taking them trick-or-treating. Now that I've left Christianity, I still look forward to the holidays. Christmas/Yule/Winter Solstice--whatever it's called, it's a time of joy and giving and yummy food. Halloween--it's a joy to watch my children enjoy what I didn't, with no fear of "Satan" to hinder their steps. The cycle of the seasons is cause for celebration, even if "Easter" isn't really a thing for me. And I want my children to feel special on their birthdays: to know that they're important and valued. This rejection of holidays stemmed from anti-Catholic and anti-Pagan attitudes. It was promoted as being "God's way," but all the tracts reviled Catholics and Pagans, making it obvious that the real problem was with other people's belief systems. Of course, we were the ones with the "right" understanding of the Bible. As with everything else. Nowadays, my parents still don't celebrate religious holidays, except for having or attending a Thanksgiving meal (apparently there's some justification in the Bible for "a day of thanks," don't ask me). They are free to do whatever they want on the holidays; meanwhile, at my house, there will likely be a delicious dinner cooking and a living room full of loved ones.
This year was probably my son's best Halloween yet. At least from my perspective. Halloween 2013 - He was only a little over a month old. We put him in a Superman onesie but didn't go anywhere or do anything. We didn't even hand out candy. Halloween 2014 - He was one year old. We didn't trick-or-treat but we did put him in a costume and then in the stroller to roll around the neighborhood a little (he still couldn't walk yet.) Halloween 2015 - Two years old. First time trick-or-treating. He enjoyed walking up and down the sidewalks. But as soon as we'd turn to go up to a house, he'd get really mad. He cried a fair amount. We didn't go to too many houses. And that brings us to this year..... I made sure to have pretty low expectations this year. I honestly didn't think he'd even want to be in his costume for more than a minute. Yesterday we went to a Halloween thing at the botanical gardens. He actually stayed in the costume (astronaut) for over an hour! He enjoyed walking around since he loves the gardens. They had some trick or treat stations set up but he basically cried every time we went to one. Needless to say, I kept my expectations low again for today. He still doesn't really understand what Halloween is or what the point of trick-or-treating is or anything like that. We probably should have hyped it up and prepared him more but oh well. He can't eat any of the candy anyway (due to allergies and texture issues.) So the first few houses he was mad, similar to last year. But eventually he caught on a bit more. He carried his little pumpkin bucket up to people and held it out. He has a speech delay so he wasn't able to say anything. Most people weren't bothered by it. But a few times I did have to tell them he couldn't talk. A couple times he tried to hand his bucket off to the people. I think it's because we were saying "give them your bucket" instead of "hold out your bucket." Oops. It was cute though. He wasn't at all bothered by the chaos of our busy neighborhood. He wasn't scared when we went to the house with a bunch of crazy decorations, music, fog machine, etc. Overall I am just super proud of him. And he looked adorable in his costume. Who knows what next year will bring but I am quite happy with how it all turned out this year.
Fruitcake posted a topic in QuiverfullIn other news it looks like my whole family will be denying Jesus about 4 times before Monday. We've got Peter beat! How about you? pennyraine.com/blog/2010/10/while-you-are-trick-or-treating-a-child-will-be-sacrificed/ For the love, somebody help me break this link. I removed the http://www per FJ directions but that didn't do it.
Does anyone know if Derick celebrated Halloween growing up? It seems like he has led a more normal sort of life compared to the Duggars, having more of the normal growing up experiences which makes me wonder about how he and Jill will raise their baby. It's normal for people to want to share happy childhood experiences they had with their own kids and if Derick enjoyed trick-or-treating, for instance, I can see him wanting to share that with his child. But I know the Duggars are totally against Halloween and at least according to this article: http://www.celebitchy.com/389095/jim-bo ... ern_music/ they believe that "magic and witches are â€œpart of a demonic realm God wants us to stay away from.â€ No hocus pocus here!" So no Harry Potter either I assume. I just wonder how many of these types of differences might arise when they start raising a child together. Jill has been brought up in such extremely narrow life experiences with so much intolerance and so heavy on the rules, whereas Derick...while he might be very religious, clearly experienced going to a secular university (although he was a member of the Baptist Church group on campus), being Pistol Pete (not something I can see the Duggars allowing any of their kids to do in a zillion years), and I'm sure he has secular friends. He works at Walmart. I just get the feeling that his upbringing was more what we would consider normal. He played sports and was on sports teams and not everything in his life revolved around or had to be immersed in Jesus and the Bible. I wonder if they have a daughter...all the crazy wardrobe stuff, the ridiculous swimsuits and so on. I can't help but wonder how Derick will feel about that when it's HIS little girl being forced into such restrictions, not to mention his Mom...she strikes me as someone who will not be happy to see such rules forced on to her grandchild. It's possible to be very devout in your Faith without being hobbled by all these ridiculous rules. Clearly Derick's Mom trusts her son to be the good person she raised. She doesn't feel she has to keep controlling every aspect of his life as an adult, or enforce stupid rules to ensure he stays Godly.
Every year I reread old favorite books that I associate with Halloween, either because they have Halloween settings or because they're spooky. I'm looking to expand my repertoire. Some of my favorites are Rosemary Edghill's Bast mysteries, Ray Bradbury's Something Wicked This Way Comes, M. R. James and E. F. Benson's ghost stories, and Leslie Meier's Halloween mysteries. Help me expand my Halloween reading list! What do you like to read at this time of year? I'm also looking for good recommendations for Halloween themed podcasts or radio mysteries. I know about the original broadcast of "The War of the Worlds," of course. What else can people recommend?
This blogger dressed up as a Mormon mommy fashion blogger for Halloween. She said "complete with a fake laptop and a book of mormon. most people just thought i was actually pregnant, though!" http://jennyslittlelife.blogspot.com/20 ... oween.html
http://gawker.com/5854540/top-foreclosu ... oween-bash Just read this over on another site. Not sure if it fits in under quiver full of snark, but since it's about "money" I thought it would fit. I wish I could say I am surprised, but I'm not.