Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Autumn Arrives Today! Celebrate Mabon!

Aaaahhhhh finally – Autumn arrives today with cooler weather and darker nights. And the best part is that pumpkins are sprouting up everywhere! 

It's also the pagan holiday of Mabon, a harvest festival that encourages pagans to reap what they sow, express gratitude, complete projects, and honor a moment of balance. It's also a time to celebrate successes but also a time to reflect on those things that did not come to fruition.

According to a story on the Huffington Post, here are six ways to celebrate Mabon:

1. Create an altar with apples, leaves, corn, pomegranates – and gardening tools – along with an orange or yellow candle to give thanks.

2. Ask for blessings from the Earth Mother Goddess and/or ask the Green Man to bless your harvest.

3. Do apple magic by slicing an apple in half and looking for the pentagram inside. 

4. Listen to music.

5. Mediate on balance, reflect on how to handle stress, and how to manage your and other people's emotions. 

6. Pray for peace and stability – including climate stability (which is really needed in Northern California).

Like many Halloween haunters, this comes at an especially needed time since I start running behind schedule, stressing out, and not enjoying every minute of our favorite time of year. I've dedicated actual time – it's on my calendar with alerts and everything – to enjoy the season. What do you do to remind yourself to live in the moment?

Monday, September 21, 2015

Scream Queens

Get ahold of yourselves, bitches. The newest show from the creator of American Horror Story, debuts Tuesday, September 22 on Fox. Like it’s predecessor, SCREAM QUEENS is a horror anthology series but this one is packs quite the cast – and laughs?! The first season involves the reemergence of a 20-yr old mystery at Kappa Kappa Tau sorority and a serial killer named The Red Devil. It stars AHS alum, Emma Roberts, plus Lea Michelle, Abigail Breslin, Nick Jonas(!), Ariana Grande(!!) as well as genre veterans Charisma Carpenter (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) and the one and only Jamie Lee Curtis.

Emma Roberts described the new series:

"It’s Mean Girls meets Friday the 13th. I think it’s laugh-out-loud funny, it’s edge-of-your-seat scary and everyone is wearing Chanel."

Early reviews have been great: “refreshed horror genre with lots of comedy”, “screams bloody fun”, “a glorious mix of blood and laughter”, “a killer comedy”, and “a scare-com mishmash but at least it’s different”.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Martha Stewart's 2015 Halloween Issue Signals the End of Era

Martha Stewart's 2015 Halloween issue features a hideous miniature troll on the cover. Shudder! It's on newsstands now though I haven't seen it yet. I'm guessing it's another repackaged issue with little or no new content, but the headlines on the cover are troubling: "for all ages", "kooky", "amazing". Shockingly, this is the first year the cover doesn't feature Martha in an original costume. 

This is probably due to Meredith Corp. taking over the publishing rights to Martha's magazines, and clearly signals a turn to the softer family fare they produce. Gasp! Will Martha's Halloween ever be the same again? Probably not. It's disappointing but Martha's dark empire is fading faster than a vampire in sunlight. Even the meager Halloween lines at Michaels and Joann's were straight reruns of previous years and will likely be retired. 

It's been a great run for Martha's elegant and ghastly Halloween, and I've personally cherished every minute. It's the end of era, but there's one fantastic book, many special issues, a couple of fun TV specials, and lots of gruesome ideas that will live on in our bloody hearts (and Pinterest). Hail Martha! The Dark Queen of Halloween!

UPDATE: I've found a copy of this and I can confirm its repackaged content. The publisher clearly struggled to collect the "cutest" pictures from previous issues but Martha's dark whimsy is still in the background. I'm not sure their intended new audience will love what's inside, and the rest of us are bored to tears. It's also a very costumes-heavy issue and one wonders why they didn't just fully commit to the theme. If you're going to repackage this year after year, why not collect content in thematic volumes: Halloween Decorating, Halloween Entertaining, Halloween Costumes, Halloween for Kids. These people clearly don't understand true Halloween fans.

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Pose-N-Stay Skeletons at Costco

Anyone else bummed that Costco isn't carrying the cool Pose-N-Stay skeletons in (m)any stores this year?! After exhaustively searching for alternatives, it turns out that was the answer. Even with a hefty $7.99 for shipping per skeleton, the overall cost of $44.98 is still cheaper than buying them on sale or using coupons. Order them here.