As far as I know, Krystal has the distinction of being the first witch that I've interviewed for the blog!Must be something in the air this year as we have another coming up soon.
Welcome, Krystal. Please tell us about yourself.
Hi! My name is Krystal, and I run the blog Bat N' Kat. I am participating in the latest Countdown to Halloween for 2016. I have participated in this Countdown since 2012. I freelance. For the Spooky Season, I am offering tarot parties via Skype or e-mail, spooky collages, letters, and abstract paintings through About.me via consultation. On Bat N' Kat, I will be having a drawing for a spooky zine. This drawing will happen in the middle of October. To enter, find the sticky tab about the Spooky Zine, and enter your name, e-mail address, and your favorite Halloween memory.
What was Halloween like for you as a kid?
I celebrated Halloween in several different places as a kid. The first was in my birth state of Washington around the Tacoma Junction. My neighbors did not skimp on the candy. My pillowcases and pumpkin buckets were stuffed full. My first Halloween costume I wore was a bunny costume, because my Mom insisted on it. My second Halloween costume was a Barbie costume. The mask for the Barbie costume would probably induce nightmares in the present day. The next place where Halloween was celebrated was in Meridian, Idaho near the Nampa borderline. Before some of the coolest neighbors I knew moved away, my neighborhood was a Halloween paradise. There were haunted houses found on every block decked out in full scary effects. Kids my age were everywhere. Our subdivision was a party.
Do you have any particular memories you'd like to share?
One of the fondest memories from the past has to be when my parents' neighborhood in Meridian, Idaho put on a Halloween block party. There were activities galore: scary movies projected onto ginormous cloths that anyone could watch, fresh caramel apples served up, trick or treating at every participating house, pumpkin carving, along with other things. The first year that happened, I dressed up as a witch. Dressing in a witch costume became a tradition every year because I loved that costume and variations of that costume. I thought witches in fiction and in real life were the coolest. Some of the best houses on the block were owned by real witches and Pagans.
What about a favorite costume?
My favorite costume was my first witch costume. Sorry, no photos this time around. We lost a bunch of photos when my parents first renovated their house.
What do you do to celebrate Halloween today?
Being a Syncretic Witch, I celebrate anything that feels right for myself spiritually. I celebrate Halloween, Samhain, and The Festival of the Dead. Halloween was always cool because it had Pagan roots, yet is secular in this day and age. Samhain is celebrated to honor my ancestors and other dead loved ones. The Festival of the Dead goes back to my Catholic roots. I continue to pay respect to my dead loved ones, continuing from the night before, and also make offerings to Santa Muerte. My grandma's (paternal) birthday and deathday were also close to these dates, so she gets extra love, prayers, and offerings.
What sort of things do you do to get into the spirit of the season?
One of the things I love doing every year is find the AOL Halloween Radio station. That has some amazing tunes. 8tracks and Pandora are also excellent to look for music that fits the mood. Specific favorite songs will be brought up on Bat N' Kat throughout the month of October, so I don't want to spoil those. I love watching Trick 'r Treat, Hocus Pocus, and Zombieland to get into Halloween mode. Definite places to visit in Idaho around the Spooky Season is The Farmstead (features a corn maze and other goodies), Haunted World (haunted maze and haunted house), The Berry Farm (for pumpkin picking), and Witches Night Out at The Village at Meridian. I used to full on trick or treat, but now I take my kids trick or treating.
I think the best way to keep Halloween in our hearts as we get older is to create traditions. Some of the traditions I took part of in the past are now passed on to my two daughters.
Inside the Spookster's Studio
The worst thing to get while trick or treating was a used condom. Yes, that totally happened! *shudders* Nothing else topped that.
My favorite thing to get was a freshly made candied apple from my awesome neighbors.
Where can people connect with you online?
Thanks for joining in the fun, Krystal!
Be sure to check out all the Countdown to Halloween bloggers!