I realize I just posted, but missing my sister brought to mind my favorite time of the year...well, it USED to be my favorite day of the year. Halloween with Kelly and Melissa.
Melissa would make TWO crockpots of chili. One would be mild and the other, spicier. She brewed hot apple cider, complete with clove and cinnamon sticks, on the stove. Her Autumn-scented candles were lit around the house, a fire was in the fireplace, the fire pit in the backyard was also aglow, encircled with camping chairs.
Everyone would scoop a bowl of chili, grab a slab of Marie Calendar's cornbread, slather it with honey butter and bundled in a sweatshirt or sometimes a throw from the couch, gather in the backyard. Kelly would stoke the fire, and we'd all take turns yelling at the kids to leave the fire alone.
The kids would eat quickly and then race inside to get their costumes on, while we lingered and soon would hear the begging to head out on our 2 hour neighborhood begging spree. We'd pour giant mugs of hot apple cider, tainted with the sweet taste of Spiced Rum.
Once home, we'd soothe our throats (a little raw from the constant, "did you say thank you?") with more apple cider, sit by the fire inside and check the kids candy. And by check, I mean, we'd eat the kids candy.
As Halloween approaches, I'm a little sad. But there are new traditions to be made and I am determined to make them as special as those we left behind.