I have the apples and nuts at the ready for the Púca (Celtic fairy folklore creatures, who arrive after dark). As a child, my sisters, cousins and I, we went from house to house with a carved turnip, we wore capes or large coats, and sang old Irish songs or recited poetry. My mother made a Barm Brack, a dried fruit bread which contained various objects baked into the bread and was used as a sort of fortune telling game. In the barmbrack were: a pea, a stick, a piece of cloth, a small coin (originally a silver sixpence) and a ring. The bread was sliced and each item, when received in the slice, was supposed to carry a meaning to the person concerned: the pea, the person would not marry that year; the stick, "to beat one's wife with", would have an unhappy marriage or continually be in disputes; the cloth or rag, would have bad luck or be poor; the coin, would enjoy good fortune or be rich; and the ring, would be wed within the year. We played "bobbing" in a basin of water for apples or coins. A game whereby you were only allowed to use your mouth, your hands had to be placed behind your back. We usually finished off the evening telling ghost stories.
Now most people here in Ireland celebrate Halloween, wearing masks and costumes, children go on "trick or treat" visits. The turnips have been replaced by pumpkins (much easier to carve) and the Barm brack only contains a ring.
Whether you celebrate Samhain or Halloween, have a great one!
I am a community worker I was working full time until my cancer diagnosis in October 2013. I have been interested in crafts all my life. I am always knitting or sewing. I love the different seasonal crafts and spending time with family and friends.