Saturday, October 22, 2011

Trick or Treat, by Harlow Jane Cassidy

by Melissa Bourbon

Halloween’s around the corner and Bliss is a-buzz with spooky festivities.  When you walk around the courthouse square and browse the storefronts, make sure you pay special heed to the Villa Farina.  They’re celebrating with sugar skulls and a shrine in honor of Day of the Dead.  And Seed-n-Bead, Josie’s shop, has a Halloween bracelet class going on.  Orange and black beads, little charms with spiders on them, and a few crystals thrown in.  Mine gets in the way when I do my handwork, but I love it!

It all got me thinking about Halloween in Bliss when I was a kid.  Ghouls and witches and goblins walked the streets.  Meemaw stringing fake spider webs around the front porch, piles of pumpkins on the steps, and garlands of fall leaves.  There was always a cauldron of hot apple cider bubbling on the stove.

My favorite costume was Dorothy Gale’s dress.  Meemaw made it for me when I was a little girl and I wore it every single day.  It started me on my sewing path.  When I'd worn it out, I asked her to make me another one.  That's when they started teaching me how to sew.  "Give a man a fish, he eats for a day.  Teach him to fish, he eats for a lifetime."  'Course I'd stared at her, gobbledy-eyed when Mama had said that to me, but now I understand.  I could watch them sew and have another Dorothy dress and be happy for the day, or I could learn to sew and be happy for a lifetime.  

Guess what I chose?  Right you are!  I learned to sew, discovered my charm,  and here I am today.

Being a dressmaker is like being a bartender... I get to hear other people’s stories.  So come on, now, tell me about your Halloween traditions:

~What is your favorite Halloween costume?  Like I said, mine is my Dorothy Gale dress.

~How about your favorite Halloween treat?  For me, Nana always made homemade popcorn balls.  As soon as October first hits, that’s still what I want.

Look for A Fitting End, the 2nd Magical Dressmaking Mystery, in February 2012!

Connect with Melissa

Melissa's Website


  1. I've always liked dressing up like a gypsy... it feels freeing, in a way, to be able to put all different colors on, and pile scarves and jewelry on top of it, and not care! A riot of color!

  2. One of my aunts made popcorn balls, too. Yummy!

  3. Oh, I did the gypsy thing, too, Victoria! Such fun! I also liked being a pirate, probably because I got a plastic saber to wave around.

  4. I just remember counting out all the candies in my bag but I always keep the tootsie rolls. And when we went to a Halloween party, I did enjoy the candy apples.

  5. My foreign born husband dressed as Dracula, to the delight of one little boy, as they dribbled fake blood amidst guffaws. But then a little princess burst into tears, stabbing Dracula through the heart (no stake needed), and the costume was retired forever.

  6. What a funny story, Liz!

    I tend to go with a cat costume, whiskers and ears are so much fun.

    ~ Krista

  7. My brother convinced me that Crunch bars had nuts in them, which I don't like, so I always gave him all the Crunch bars until one day I found out, lo and behold, that they DO NOT have nuts in them!

  8. Liz, sweet story! Pobracita princess.

  9. Caramel apples, Dru! I LOVE them. My mom is more a fan of candy apples. She likes that crunch.

  10. I did the gypsy costume, too. Back in the day when you made do with whatever you had. I love those kind of costumes the best.