After giving it some thought, I changed this month’s theme to Haunted Holidays. I realized I was creating two different themed plans in December and I wanted to take a little bit more time to plan out my approach to writing haiku next year, so…Blood and Ice will be next month’s theme.
This December is all about the haunted holidays! Back in the day, people told ghost stories during Christmastime and I would love to bring that tradition back. I encourage everyone to create, write, or find a short ghost tale to tell on Christmas eve, and if you’re having trouble, might I recommend simply retelling the classic timeless tale from Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol. Scrooge is the hero we need right now!
Here’s a look at some of the shenanigans I have planned this month:
Haunted holidays haiku every Monday
Brand new gift-giving guides for Halloween and horror fans
New recipes for christmassy cocktails
Haunted Holidays Photo Challenge
12 days of Christmas gift-giving countdown (Details TBA)
I’m kicking off the celebrations with a daily photo challenge. You may post both traditional or haunted photos or artwork. Jump in any time, even if you skip a day, or 5, but, if you can post all 25 days in December, I’ll enter your name into the cauldron for a drawing to win a haunted holidays prize pack.
No purchase is necessary for any of the upcoming contests, but you must be following my blog and be friends with me on at least one of my social media pages (listed below) for a chance to win! Please see official contest rules for more details.
I wish you a season filled with amusement, inspiration, love, and joy. Please be safe and stay healthy. Remember to take some time for yourself, relax and recharge, so you don’t burn out or lose your damn mind by January.
I love this time of year because I can make this simple yet amazingly delicious spiced apple cider recipes. This one is great because it can be served with or without alcohol. I like to use Captain Morgan Spiced Rum because sometimes the cider turns out a little fruity and it balances nicely.
Every Halloween season I make it a point to revisit the classic Universal monster films. These are the films that cemented American’s love affair with horror. Watching my favorite old classic horror films is one of my biggest Halloween traditions. This week, I created spooky cocktail to honor Karl Freund’s classic The Mummy, starring the legendary Boris Karloff, with a drink I call Ode to the Mummy.
3 oz. Coffee 1.5 oz Cutwater Bali Hai Tiki Monkey Liquer 1.5 oz. Vodka 1 oz. French Vanilla Creamer or Cream Splash of Cream of Coconut
I would like to get back on some type of schedule. It’s easier said than done sometimes, but in effort to do so, I’m reviving Friday Fright Nightcaps to coincide with our monthly theme. This May is Cemetery Appreciation Month and our theme celebrates cemetery life, so I put together a classy, refreshing drink, perfect for springtime and a tribute to the afterlife.
750 ml. White wine (Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, etc.,) 12 oz. Peach Vodka (New Amsterdam) Fresh Fruit
First, cut up some fresh fruit. I used peaches, blackberries, red raspberries, apples, and strawberries. Any fruit will do. Next, pour entire contents of wine bottle into a pitcher. Lastly, add 12 oz or about half a bottle of Peach Vodka. I choose to use New Amsterdam brand, but you can use whichever brand you choose. Stir well and refrigerate for about 12-24 hours. Serve chilled.
Sinister Saturdays have kinda become a hodge podge of recipes for Halloween cocktails and food, random thoughts, and angry mini-meltdowns that I mark ‘private’ the next day to spare myself any humiliation over my privileged tantrums. Lucky for you, tonight is a recipe in celebration of our theme: Zombie Spring.
I call it the Half-Zombie, cuz it’s missing like half the ingredients of a Zombie cocktail.
Ingredients: 2-3 oz dark rum 2 oz pineapple juice 1 oz cranberry juice 1/2 oz lemon juice 1/2 oz lime juice 1/2 oz pomegrante grenadine Dash of ginger ale
Optional Garnish: Mint, fresh fruit slices, pineapple, strawberry, lime, etc.
If there was anything truly sinister about this Saturday, it’s that I’m too damn lazy to go to the store to buy ingredients to make a decent Zombie. I apparently haven’t recovered from 2020.
I’ll admit this ended up on the sweet side, but sinister and sweet are what us Halloween lovers live for! Cheers!
We’re back with another great kid-friendly recipe for working parents on Halloween night. The only sad thing about Halloween is how fast the day goes by. You’re working, cleaning, doing errands, running around getting the costumes together, trick-or-treating starts at sundown, but wait, the kids are hungry… Now, you could let them eat candy for dinner, that’s what a proper witch would do…or you could be a somewhat responsible parent and actually make a meal, behold the ancient power of Mummy Pizza Heads!
Pillsbury Grand Flaky Layer Biscuits 1 Mozzarella slice 1 tbsp of Pizza sauce Choose your own pizza toppings
Start by following the baking instructions of Bake Pillsbury Grand Flaky Layer Biscuits but only bake on cookie sheet or pizza pan for half the time (about 8 mins)
Remove from oven and add mozzarella cheese slice, pepperoni slices (or desired pizza toppings), and1 spoonful of pizza sauce on the top of the biscuits
Put pan back in the oven and cook for the remainder of time or until biscuits are golden brown
Garnish with olives for eyes and face
Throw in a nice garden salad and call it a night. This recipe is super easy, super fast, and super fun for kids to make and to eat. If your kids are older, you can call them Bloody Mummy Pizza Heads and yes, the ingredients are premade cuz that’s how we roll around here. If you’re not cool with that, go ahead, knock yourself out and make something from scratch, be sure to send us the recipe. For the rest of us, we got more time for trick-or-treating!
There are only two weekends left in October and it’s time to kick it up a notch. No Halloween party plans, no problem. You can totally make your own party with this Spooky Spicy Halloween Margarita!
1 cup ice
1/2 cup orange juice (fresh or concentrate)
5 oz. Blood-orange margarita mix
1 tsp. lime juice
1 tsp. hot sauce (I used Franks Red Hot)
1 tbsp Agave Syrup
2-3 oz. tequila
Garnish with orange slices or lime wedges or black salt (optional)
Fast and Easy Black Salt Rim Garnish: 1 tablespoon of sea salt 4 drops blue food coloring 4 drops red food coloring Mix very well together
Add tiny bit of lime juice around glass rim and dip glass in black salt
Put ice, blood orange mix, orange juice, lime juice, Agave syrup, hot sauce, and tequila in a blender and blend well.
Pour into glass
Garnish with black salt rim or fresh fruit (optional)
As usual, this recipe is highly modifiable. Too spicy, add more juice. Want more spice, add more hot sauce. Want more alcohol, add another ounce of tequila.
I’ve heard rumblings that recipes with “premade” ingredients aren’t good recipes. Well, to that I say, congradu-friggin-lations on having your life in order long enough to make stuff from scratch, but the rest of us don’t have time for that. Now, move along, you’re blocking the blender. It’s time for Spooky Spicy Halloween Margaritas!
Every year, I see recipes for Halloween pasta using black squid ink pasta. It always looks so fun for this time of year. Pasta is typically a fast and easy meal to make, so, after years of thinking about it, I finally found a place that sells black squid ink pasta (Cost Plus) and decided to make my own version of Halloween Spaghetti Monster. The results were delicious, even if my pictures were complete fails. (Please don’t tell me it looks like a dog.)
Black Squid Ink Pasta is made from durum semolina wheat, water, and 1% squid ink. I was always nervous that it would taste fishy, but that’s not the case. Instead, it tastes just like bland wheat pasta. The creepiest thing about black squid ink pasta is the boiling water turns a deep charcoal color and look like slimy worms once drained.
1 pkg Plain Spaghetti 1 pkg Black Squid Ink Pasta 1 jar Traditional Marinara or Pasta Sauce Black Olives (1/2 cut for monster nose and mouth) Green Olives (for monster eyes) Dash of Parmesan Cheese
For best results, follow instructions on jar
Add sauce to crock pot along with 1 tablespoon of olive oil
Cook for 3 hours on high/1 hour on low
For best results, follow instructions on pasta packages
Cook both pastas in separate big pots full of lightly salted water 1. Spaghetti for 12-14 min 2. Black squid ink pasta for 7-9 min (takes slightly less than regular pasta)
Drain water and return to the pots
Serve in bowl and add pasta sauce
Use olives to make monster face
All reheats nicely with a little tab of butter. Happy Halloween!