Happy Halloween!


Here are a few Halloween favorites for your viewing pleasure, enjoy!


 From the five little pumpkins sitting on a gate







I hope you’ve enjoyed the countdown of 100 days of Harvest and Halloween fun!

Please join me for a chat with host Kim Power Stilson today on BYU SiriusXM Radio 143 at 3 p.m. Eastern. Or catch the show online on http://byuradio.org/about/. That’s noon for my California peeps, 1 p.m. for Utah friends and 3 o’clock for Andrew and Annie; everyone else will have to figure out their own 🙂 

Happy Harvest and Halloween Wishes for You

 From centerpieces created with toys and collectibles
 To pictures made of buttons and bits

  A family tree with favorite Halloween photos…
  A quiet place to color and think 

 A party spot
 Cool, not creepy decor

 So many reasons to be grateful

Join us for some good old-fashion Halloween fun!
BYU SiriusXM Radio 143 October 31st at 3 p.m. Eastern.

No Sirius – no problem, we’ve got you covered!

FamilyShare: Ideas for Your Happy Halloween

 Ghoulishly great tips for celebrating Halloween

Just published on familyshare.com 

Get the whole enchilada: 

And remember our date!

BYU Sirius Radio 143 – Halloween – 3 p.m. Eastern.
Happy Halloween!

An Enchanted Evening


A Medieval Knight

This party features drama, theatrics and humor without the macabre – a good choice for children.

Our medieval ancestors celebrated Halloween with a hybrid of All Hallow’s Eve and Samhain celebration. According to medieval expert Dr. Madeleine Pelner Cosman, the Halloween celebration was a conglomeration of the pleasures of all of the holidays of the year, rolled into one. There were rituals, superstitions, plays and traditions observed in the great halls, followed by seven masked  “soulers” soliciting soul cakes or fruits.  I recommend her book, Medieval Holidays and Festivals as a guide to these events if you want to plan an authentic medieval-style party. In so doing, you also may wish to honor “King Crispin” whose holiday is a few days before Halloween. He is the saint of boot and shoemakers. The Hide the Slipper game comes from his commemoration.

Double, double toil and trouble – I love this card! The plaid, the reference to Shakespeare’s iconic chant from MacBeth, and the details; the stirring stick in the cauldron is a vial of wedding bubbles. I have Scottish ancestors, a Scottish surnamed husband and am related to The Bard. 


Rustic silver and wood pieces, baskets

“Stone” dishes – use “old stone” serving pieces (florist plaster containers). Line with foil so the food doesn’t contact the surface.

For messy authenticity, skip forks and spoons.

Wild wings

Dragon scales and dip (green tortilla chips) and guacamole

Dragon eggs (Deviled eggs tinted green)

Castle cruditĂ©s, grapes, melons, apples, mushrooms, carrots and broccoli, sour cream, onion   and garlic dip: think of a castle garden

Charmed crowdie: applesauce with whipped cream

Breadsticks, baguettes or fairy tale croutons

Leg of dragon (ham), or chicken drumsticks

What was under that rock? trifle

Soul cakes

Goblin gorp made with black and orange M&Ms; candy corn and mixed nuts

Black licorice

Sparkling glow in the dark punch (with glow sticks and dry ice)


 Think medieval, castle, knights, French or Scottish, Cinderella shoes and fairy tale accessories.

At the entrance, a black arch with flickering candle-style Christmas lights, black tulle or other fabric, gray Spanish moss, twigs, silk or dry flowers and a Happy Halloween sign. Sconces or garden torches will cast an old-world glow.  A fog machine adds a misty environment.

Hang glittery stars* from the ceiling over the refreshment table using strong fishing line. $Tip Purchase stars after Christmas at discount. Wrap silvery beaded branches* around the punchbowl, black pillar candles finish off the centerpiece.

On the fireplace mantel; hang swags of shimmering orange cloth, black pine garlands with silvery, beaded swags intertwined and bronze glittered silk autumn leaves. Add orange Christmas ornaments  (purchase after the holidays at a discount) and beaded fruit for additional sparkle. If you don’t have a mantel, the swags could be placed on a sideboard, piano or other surface.

Candelabra with candles, and on the tables, carved turnip or pumpkin lanterns with lights and apples with candles to invite good spirits and keep evil away

The baroque effect is enhanced by classical music or Mannheim Steamroller’s Halloween music

For an outdoor table, I dressed an antique table with an organza burnout underskirt and a tartan plaid. A large cheese board garnished with kale and collard greens held a leg of dragon (ham), braided bread with cheese, grapes and castle crudités. One trick to encourage the guests to circulate is to serve the food in different locations.

Drape a vintage wedding dress on a wire dressmaker’s form. Shine black lights underneath. 


Bob For Apples

It is said the Romans introduced this game for players to try to determine the identity of a future sweetheart. With each apple assigned the name of a potential partner, apples float in a tub of water. Players have to bite an apple and pull it out without using their hands. Get the apple – get the girl (or boy)!  If there are young children around, have a responsible person host this activity to keep toddlers out of the tub and remove the water when the game concludes.

Murder In The Dark

The classic; perfect for Halloween parties. The object of this game is for an unknown “killer” to secretly “murder” the guests, while the other try to guess the identity of the murderer.

Seat guests in a circle. Pass around pieces of paper, all blank except for one that contains a black spot. The guest who gets the black spot will be the murderer, but doesn’t tell anyone.

Collect all the papers for the next round. Everyone takes the hands of the people seated on either side of them so everyone in the circle is holding hands. Lower the lights in the room, so all can barely see each other’s faces. The murderer kills the other guests either by squeezing the hand he or she is holding or by winking at them. When a guest sees that he or she is being winked at, they groan and fall over dead. When a guest sees a victim being winked at or a hand squeezed, they call out “I have an accusation!” and name the suspected murderer. Don’t look at the murderer because they could wink you dead before you name them! If the accuser is right, they win! If they are wrong they become a victim and die, as the murderer continues his/her villainous spree.

 The Bottle Cap Game

(May be played with a spoon if a bottle cap is not available.) The guests are seated in a circle.  “It” is chosen, stands in the middle of the circle and  receives a bottle cap or small spoon filled with water. He/she announces a category such as “castles” or “famous kings and queens” or “knights” or “villains,” and mentally selects an answer (such as King Richard) without telling anyone.  Going around the circle, each guest names one answer that fits in the category with no repeats; King Arthur, Robert the Bruce, MacBeth… If a guest names the king (King Richard)  they are splashed with the bottle cap filled with water. If someone repeats an answer previously given, they get the splash! The splashed person takes their place as It, selects a new category and the game continues.

Hunt the Slipper

Choose one player to be the customer, she steps aside. All the other players are cobblers and sit in a circle on the floor. The customer comes to the circle and says:
“Cobbler, cobbler; mend my shoe.
Get it done by half-past two.”

She hands one of the cobblers an old slipper, and goes away to count to ten. She returns to hear the slipper is not ready.

“I must have it,” says the customer.
“Then you must find it,” all the cobblers reply.
She steps into the circle and the search begins; each cobbler passes the slipper to his or her neighbor hiding it from sight as much as possible. The slipper must not stop in one place, but must keep passing around the circle, one way or the other.

            The customer tries to find it, calling out the name of the person she thinks holds the slipper. If she is right, that cobbler must trade places with her and bring it to be mended again.

The Story of St. George And The Dragon

This tale returned with the crusaders and was shared through the late Middle Ages and Renaissance. It tells of a knight who rescued a princess from a dragon, converted a kingdom to Christianity, which in turn built a church with an altar imbued with healing powers. The legend can be found online and in history books. 

Solve A Mystery

This would be a good evening to host a mystery game where guests are assigned roles and try to figure out the solution to the problem.

“Souling” or Trick or Treat

People in Great Hall parties actually trick or treated! Several were selected to put on masks and go around with baskets requesting treats; soul cakes and fruit from guests.

Candlelight Procession

Three times around the Great Hall with candles in shiny apple candleholders, then a bow to the king or host, and the guests depart into the night. Good night and happy Halloween!

Note to friends: I had thought to do a “Scottish” Gatsby party this year, then I SAW the movie. Adultery is not one of my favorite themes, so no thanks Mr. Fitzgerald. I’ll be more careful in the future.

The delicious recipes featured in An Enchanted Evening are in
You’re invited:
3 p.m. Eastern
BYU Sirius Radio 143 TalkWorthy Show

A History of Halloween Revisited

Treat your family and friends to artistic, nurturing events as you enjoy innovative and traditional entertainment. With acts of service, quality time, affirmations and positive energy warming and lighting the nights of autumn; we can communicate a universal love language. Because the celebration of the harvest has a checkered past with extremes that range from the joyful, exultant celebrations of ancient Israel to the murderous rituals of the early pagans, it’s helpful to understand the origins of our modern traditions as our celebrations have roots that reach centuries back into the early societies of our ancestors.

A Harvest and Halloween History

Because many American and European traditions are based on ancient Judeo-Christian customs, you might enjoy knowing more about the roots of some of our autumn celebrations. Sukkot was a joyous holiday celebrating the harvest, it started around 1300 to 1400 B.C., when the Israelites left Egypt to return to their promised land, Canaan. This was long before the Catholic Hallomas or pagan Samhain.  In modern days, this holiday is celebrated between mid September and late October. Autumn also marked the beginning of Israel’s New Year with Rosh Hashanah, the Day of Atonement. This national day of fasting culminated in the sacrifice of animals and a symbolic cleansing of the High Priest and Israel, teaching about the sacrifice of the Son of God for the cleansing of His people and reconciliation through Him, to God The Father. 

God sent prophets to instruct and guide his children. He covenanted with the Patriarch Abraham that through his family all the world would be blessed. God gives the rain, seasons, bountiful crops, music, laughter and happiness. He commanded Abraham’s descendants in Moses’ time to celebrate and have great joy. The Feast of the Tabernacles was instituted over three thousand years ago to give God’s children a festive fall holiday wherein they could enjoy the bounty of the harvest. “Also in the fifteenth day of the seventh month, when ye have gathered in the fruits of the land, ye shall keep a feast unto the Lord seven days. “And ye shall take you on the first day the boughs of goodly trees … and ye shall rejoice before the Lord your God seven days.”  Adam, Abraham, Moses and others. 


Abraham’s family (Israel) was called to administer the priesthood – the power of God to bless the earth. Prophets counseled societies of God-fearing (respecting) men and women and gave commandments to live by: Thou shalt love the Lord thy God, love thy neighbor as thyself, do not commit adultery or murder or worship idols. Do not steal or bear false witness. They were to care for the poor and live in peace and harmony. Faith, repentance and baptism were the initiation into Christ’s church. As Israel kept the commandments, they prospered. When they didn’t they fell into bondage and suffered.

During Israel’s forty years in the wilderness, The God Jehovah, commanded His prophet Moses to set up a tabernacle, a portable temple, in which the Spirit of God could dwell as Israel worshipped God and received revelations. This tabernacle was to be the House of the Lord until they were settled in the Promised Land and could build a permanent temple. The Feast of the Tabernacles was a remembrance of God’s protection of the children of Israel during their forty years in the wilderness after escaping centuries of bondage in Egypt. It also was a celebration of the freedom to worship their God.  Sukkot also commemorated the harvest or in-gathering of the fruits of the year. This feast, considered the most joyful of all holidays, was celebrated for eight days. 

The positive energy flowed; Israelites were under commandment to be grateful, happy, hospitable and set aside their worries.  They set up, decorated and lived in booths or tents as a reminder of their time in the wilderness. They hung bough from trees adorned with fruits of the harvest that were a reminder of the kindly protection given by their God. The spirits of ancestors and patriarchs were invited to be present. Israel gave thanks, enjoyed worship, feasts, sporting events and other merry-making activities. From that time until the present, Israel looks forward to a day when “the King, the Lord of hosts” will reign on the earth and all men will live in peace and brotherhood. It was at this momentous time that Moses addressed Israel, Solomon dedicated the temple at Jerusalem and Jesus Christ declared, “I am the Light of the World.”   


In modern times, decorations of squash, dried corn and autumn bounty adorn Sukkot celebrations. As celebrants share and enjoy the final days of autumn in the beautiful outdoors, they are grateful for the bounteous blessings they enjoy.

People of faith who’ve studied the scriptures learned that in the beginning, God created the heaven and the earth. He created every living creature, including man.  “And God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good… (Genesis 1:31.) How did evil come into the picture? Where do dark forces figure into our modern holiday of Halloween? 

The Bible teaches that there was a war in heaven. One of His sons wanted God’s honor and glory. Lucifer, “The Shining One,” or “Son of the Morning” gathered followers who challenged The Father and were cast out (Isaiah 14:12). Jehovah, ” The Unchangeable One,”  God’s eldest Son offered to teach and provide an atonement for God’s children to allow them to be brought back to His presence after their time of testing on earth. 

Jehovah provided the opportunity to live forever with God in a state of happiness.  He created the world to give God’s children the opportunity to gain a physical body, be taught, tried and tested for obedience, integrity, virtue and other Godly traits.  The rebellious exiled spirits were allowed to inhabit the earth to provide the necessary opposition to good, giving mankind an alternative and test. These disembodied spirits were given power to tempt, but man was given the ability to choose and to triumph.  If all good things came from God, all bad things came from Lucifer or another title, Satan, “He who lies in wait.” And thus, there is opposition in all things. 

Physicists have identified opposing power or forces throughout the universe. Blessings, healing and peace come from God; the kindness of neighbors, the love of family.  Anyone who had dealt with the crushing oppressions of child abuse, addictions, violence or betrayal has experienced the power of evil.

As soon as Heaven gives a reason for happiness, the adversary creates a perversion in opposition and that is where the story of Halloween begins. The word “Hallowe’en” comes from “All Hallows Eve,” the night before “All Saints Day,”  “All Hallows,” or “Hallomas,” a Catholic holiday on November 1st. All Saints Day honors all Christian saints. Originally celebrated in the spring, the holiday was moved to autumn by Pope Gregory in 830 A.D. in an effort to replace the pagan celebration of Samhain. On All Hallows’ Day, November 1st, Catholics prayed for the souls in heaven. On November 2, All Souls’ Day, they prayed for the souls in limbo. It was believed that more prayers would speed a soul’s journey to heaven. Poor people went door-to-door offering to pray for the dead in exchange for treats; soul cakes, in a practice called “going souling”, a forerunner of modern trick-or-treating.     

After God established order with peace and prosperity, Lucifer taught and tempted with his perverted doctrine. He started societies of pagans who broke God’s Ten Commandments and practiced rituals that were in direct opposition to eternal laws. 

Jesus taught love and brotherhood; pagans learned war and destruction. Israel had Sukkot, pagans in the British Isles celebrated the harvest and new year on November 1 with the festival of Samhain. Their recorded history begins around 500 B.C. The Romans eventually occupied most of the British Isles, but they didn’t go into Ireland where local customs were left undisturbed and pagan civilization thrived. Pagan priests known as Druids were said to have ties to the “otherworld” and were second only to the king in prestige and power. 

God instructed Israel to worship Him and follow His authority. He gave the priesthood and prophets to heal, bless and enable His children to do good in His behalf.  Pagans worshipped nature, they believed they possessed powers of sorcery and divination. Legends tell of an entity in Ireland known as Lugh, “The Shining One, ” (the Lucifer of Isaiah 14:12) He possessed many desirable attributes; he was handsome, brilliant and athletic, a warrior, musician and sorcerer. Cities throughout Europe were named for Lugh; Leon, Spain, Leignitz, Poland and Lyon (Lugdunum), France. Caesar compared him to Mercury, the Roman God of war. He helped his associates prepare for battles in which innumerable hosts of enemies were slain. Legends say he gave power to change the weather, brew drinks of forgetfulness and create invisibility cloaks. They performed cruel torture, head-hunting and other inhumane practices. Whatever God gave as a commandment, Lugh taught the opposite. He taught idol and nature-worshipping practices, fertility rituals and human sacrifice, carnality, beastiality and seduction. The history of Ireland states Lugh became a co-ruler with kings until the Celts came to Ireland and drove him underground into the “otherworld.” His pseudo “priests” were called Druids. During their pagan celebrations on the eve of Samhain, October 31st, the spirits of the dead were said to have returned from the otherworld to roam the earth. These dangerous entities were thought to be repelled by the heat and light of fire. Druids and people dressed in masks lit fires to ward off the unwelcome visitors; an interesting contrast to Israel’s welcoming of their ancestors.

Records from Ireland also tell of bonfires (bonefires) where Druids made blood sacrifices to appease nature. Animals and humans, many political enemies, were encapsulated in great woven effigies and burned alive.  Witches and Druids were spiritual and political consultants, the powers of evil reigned.  Ritual sacrifice victims have been unearthed in peat bogs. The bodies of men have been found bound, choked, throats slashed with remnants of grain and mistletoe pollen in their stomachs. Women were found bound and “pinned” alive in the bogs to drown. It was taught that blood sacrifice was necessary to replenish the earth. There were also groves for ritual sacrifice and mating rituals. Couples would cohabit for a year, with or without marriage following. A cave in France contained the bones of women and horses, ritually dismembered with human skulls made into goblets. Many of the pagans were serial killers and cannibals.

When the Romans conquered the British Isles, they ended the pagan practices. The cruel Roman soldiers were disgusted by the bloody pagan rituals. And things did not end well for the pagans.  Lugdunum in France was abandoned after multiple natural disasters. (Lyon, France’s name comes from the old Lugdunum which means “Hill of Light,” or “Hill of Lugh.”) Other places were also sites of disproportionate disasters.

The Romans brought in their own celebration of Pomona, their Goddess of Harvest, which featured fortune telling, apples and nuts. The activity we know as bobbing for apples may have had its origin in the Roman festivals. Centuries later, our medieval European ancestors held celebrations in the fall similar to the festivities of Christmas and other major holidays. In great halls, bonfires, games and feasts were the highlights of the events. The story of St. George and the dragon was reenacted, banquets were enjoyed and stories shared. Centerpieces featuring faces carved into hollowed turnips or squash were lit with candles and placed on tables. An indoor bonfire was recreated in the form of a candelabra ablaze with candlelight, reminiscent of the Feast of the Tabernacles. Because it was thought that the spirits were most powerful in the autumn, fortune telling was emphasized as people played games using nuts and apple peels to try to predict the future, a practice borrowed from the Romans. Selected partygoers would “go souling, ” begging for shortbread cookies and fruit from specified hosts in extortion for not playing tricks on them. Bobbing for apples, with each apple assigned the name of a potential sweetheart, was then enjoyed. The party ended with a candlelight procession three times around the hall. At the end, the candles stayed lit to cheer the party-goers and scare away evil spirits.

Halloween was not widely observed in England or the other predominantly Protestant areas of western Europe, nor was it celebrated much in Colonial America. Apparently there were some commemorations in the south and in the Catholic colony of Maryland.   

The English fall celebration was “Guy Fawkes Night” on November 5. Fawkes, a Catholic, weary of years of persecution of his and other non-Anglicans, lived in England in 1605. He and twelve other men created a plot to end government religious interference by blowing up the Houses of Parliament and King James as the leaders sat in session. The plot was discovered and Fawkes was executed. On the anniversary of his death, citizens of England had parades, bonfires and fireworks to commemorate his capture. The day was celebrated in the English colonies and some of the practices became part of Halloween in America. Soaping windows, removing gates from hinges and other minor acts of vandalism mimicked the actions of young English pranksters. Some of the inhabitants of the British Isles believed fairies, elves, leprechauns and witches came out at night on October 31st to create mischief. Folks dressed in scary masks and costumes to frighten away the unwelcome guests.

The people of rural Ireland brought their folk traditions and Halloween activities to America when they immigrated after the potato famine of the 1840’s.   Either the Scots or the Irish introduced the first jack-o-lanterns; hollowed turnips with carved faces illuminated with candles. Carved pumpkins became the American jack-o-lanterns of legend.  “Jack-of-the-lantern” was a  trickster. When he died he could not enter heaven, but the devil didn’t want him either. He was doomed to walk the earth with a burning ember from hell placed in a turnip lantern to light his way.           

In France, Halloween has not been celebrated until recently. In the autumn, the people celebrate “La Toussaint”, All Saints’ Day by honoring ancestors and heroes. They visit cemeteries, attend religious services and have get-togethers to enjoy harvest fruits and treats. In Mexico and Latin American countries celebrations center around “Dia De Los Muertos,” or “The Day of the Dead,” November 2nd. Family members take sugar skulls and treats to cemeteries to be placed on graves with lighted candles to welcome ancestors back to earth.  

Religious people believe God created the earth and everything in it, and that in the beginning all was good. Later some creatures became associated with the forces of darkness. Perhaps because they were predators and hunted at night; black cats, bats and owls were considered omens of bad luck and were to be avoided. Spiders, toads and poisonous animals that have become traditional Halloween icons were also associated with witchcraft or evil. They were used as warnings to children to maintain cleanliness and behave. 

 Autumn festivals heralded a time of thanksgiving for the blessings of the harvest. After Christ and most of the apostles died, the protection of the priesthood was gone from the earth. A priest, Dominic, approached the Pope to request permission to start a monastic order. The pope showed him the treasures the church had amassed and told him that Peter could no longer say “silver and gold have I none.” To which Dominic replied, “Neither can He say, Rise and walk.” People sought help and enlightenment by adopting man-made philosophies, charms and superstitions. They created activities and amulets they hoped would protect them from the forces of darkness and the mystery of the grave.  Christ restored the priesthood with His church in 1830 through a young prophet named Joseph Smith in the state of New York. He delegated the authority for baptism for the living and dead, as the Apostle Paul stated “Else what shall they do which are baptizedfor the dead, if the dead rise not at all? Why are they then baptized for thedead?”

A gentleman of my acquaintance told me that his dying wife’s final request was that she be baptized. As he considered how he might fulfill her desire, he remembered that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormons) performed proxy baptisms in behalf of the dead in their temples. The man asked the church to perform the baptism in behalf of his deceased wife.

In folklore it’s said that spirits or ghosts can’t move on without the help of the living. Could  baptism be what is needed for the dead to progress or “move on?”  Family history consultants of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints can help you find your own kindred dead and submit their names for proxy baptism in Mormon temples if they wish.

After my younger brother died, I knew in my heart that we would not be separated forever. I have on special occasions felt the presence of beloved deceased family members and believe we have deep and poignant feelings about the eternal nature and welfare of our families and our souls. I invite you to come to Jesus Christ and learn about His church in this era, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He is gathering Israel before he returns.

Sara Shendelman and Dr. Avram Davis: “Traditions: The Complete Book of Prayers, Rituals and Blessings For Every Jewish Home” ; Hyperion, N.Y., N.Y. 1998

Brian Greene, The Elegant Universe; Vintage Books, A Division of Random House, Inc., New York, 1999

Time Life Books: What Life Was Like Among Druids and High Kings; Time Life Books, Alexandria, VA 1998

Green, Miranda J., The World of the Druids, Thames and Hudson Ltd., London, 1997

Musset, Louis, The Germanic Invasions, The Making of Europe 400 – 600 A.D., Presses Universitaires de France    1965

Cosman, Madeleine Pellner: Medieval Holidays and Festivals; Charles Scribner’s Sons, New York, NY  1981

Christianity; The First Thousand Years, A & E

Bible; New Testament; 1 Corinthians 15:9 

Fall Festivals – A Pumpkin Patch Carnival

 For more fun and games, download your

on Amazon.com and Barnes and Noble.com

#fallfestival, #halloweencarnival, #pumpkinpatch, #halloweenpartygames, #halloweenfun, #halloweengamesforkidshttp://t.co/tJnyTlJi4s
— Pamela McMurtry (@pammcmurtry) October 26, 2013

All the World’s A Stage on Halloween: Last-minute Creative Costumes

 Halloween is a time for whimsy and fun. Get in the spirit by creating costumes for cavorting, who doesn’t like showing off their best work, i.e. their children?
Costumes don’t have to cost a fortune to be clever or cute
No-cost costumes made with items in the closet 
and passed along from friends

 Low cost costumes
 Costumes with re-useable parts 
(and capes, kids love capes.)
 Simple costumes using no pattern
Recycled costumes (that Lois and Clark…all business)
Favorite characters

If you have red hair you need to be BRAVE! 

Stuff from the attic and a bag; the bag makes the outfit.
Shakespeare said it well, “all the world’s a stage” on Halloween.
Cousin Will would be so proud. 

 For more creative costumes please visit:

Be part of the fun on Halloween –
 BYU Sirius Radio 143 at 3 p.m. Eastern,
hope you’ll join us!

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A Little Halloween

Mild and warm, like perfect weather, Halloween can be an entertaining interlude for little ones. celebrate Halloween with your little ones with Mother Goose’s Nursery Party. 

This soiree celebrates all the little things we love. Pre-schoolers will enjoy new and familiar activities colored with a Halloween theme. Favorite friends from Winnie the Pooh and the hundred acre woods inhabitants to five little pumpkins inspire a delightful celebration. 
Make simple sack lunches ahead of time. 
Play short games designed for their little attention spans.
Favor them with nursery rhymes selected with Halloween tones: Eensy weensy spider, Peter, Peter Pumpkin Eater, the Owl and the Pussycat, and others. 
Mother Goose yes, witches no!
Host a backyard treasure hunt in a sweet fairyland.

Find party plans, games and recipes for 
Mother Goose’s Nursery Party in

for an entertaining and informative chat about Halloween on BYU Sirius Radio 143, October 31st at 3 p.m. Eastern.

La Toussaint, as the French Have It

We are blessed in so many ways. Consider hosting a joyous celebration expressing thanks for everything the Lord does to make autumn beautiful and bountiful. Gratitude is one of the strongest forces known. Recent studies show that people who keep a gratitude journal are happier, healthier, have more energy, reach more goals and sleep better than those who don’t. What aspects of your life bring you joy? Family, friends, church, art, music, literature, science, nature, beauty, knowledge, service?  During this season we also remember family members who have gone before. The French celebrate All Saints’ Day, called La Toussaint, and with it honor their dead.

Sonia Smith, who is from France, describes the commemoration: “La Toussaint is a national holiday, the children get one week vacation. People go to the cemetery to put flowers on the tombs. Almost everyone does it, if they don’t go on the 1st of November, they go a few days before. In Alsace (the east of France), where I come from, after being at the cemetery, we buy grilled chestnuts (Marrons chauds) and eat them on the way home. In autumn, in Alsace, we harvest the grapes because we have many vineyards. In October we gather with family and friends and we have a special meal which consists of walnuts, grapes, multigrain bread or farmers bread, double smoked bacon and fresh grape juice.” 
She describes a gathering, “The favorite game to play at parties is, I’d say, ‘Les chaises musicales’. You put, for example, 10 chairs in the middle of a room and 11 people turning around them with some music of course. When the music stops the people have to find a seat and one won’t. Then you take 1 chair away and start the music again and do so until there is only one person. Now, games we loved to play are Scrabble but you have this also in English. We also loved to play Monopoly or Les Petits Chevaux (in German: Mensch Aergere Dich Nicht) It’s a game with little horses and …dice. We loved to play this game with grandma.”

Take it from the French and host a fun and classy event. For recipes and activities, download your 

You are cordially invited to join us for a TalkWorthy broadcast of joy de vive on BYU Sirius Radio 143, 
October 31st at 3 p.m. Eastern