It’s Friday. Looking for something to switch up your weekend, or to give you an excuse to relax a little? That’s what the Weekend Reset is for. Each week contributor Tim Johnstone pulls together five things to get your weekend started. Could be something to read or watch, something to eat or listen to, or even something to do. Enjoy the weekend fellas.
PLAN: A pumpkin carving party is the best kind of fall gathering.
I had never been to a pumpkin carving party until my friend had a series of them over the past few years. Our group of friends enjoyed these parties so much. So much. Our friend went all out for these affairs (I am not even kidding). The food. The decor. The baked treats. And the warm adult beverages. You don’t need to go all out though. Find a good fall-friendly dish to serve (like, say, a Pork and Tomatillo stew), get yourself the warm beverage (yes, see below), and invite your pals. You’ll need bowls to collect the pumpkin seeds and garbage bags for everything else. You should get typical party supplies (cups, plates, napkins and cutlery). While you could ask people to bring their own candles (definitely have them bring their own carving tools), having some on hand is a good idea. We also had people vote on their favorites which seemed to be a hit.
PREP: Up your Jack-O-Lantern game.
There was a time when I was a pumpkin carving purist: you draw your own face and you carve it. And then I realized you can make some super fun jack-o-lanterns with templates. I have used one or two myself over the last few years. Whether you are hosting a pumpkin carving party or going to one, or just making your front door a little less egg-worthy, these make carving great pumpkins easier. You can find them in lots of stores this time of year (they’re often included in pumpkin carving kits), or all over the internet. Like here. Or here. And here. A google search for “halloween pumpkin templates” will keep you busy as well.
EAT: A simple one-pot dish that celebrates the season.
Let’s face it. In the past this was the time of the year we were meant to be packing it on for the upcoming winter months. Wait. That’s bears. And squirrels. But for reals – this is when we can, without guilt, turn to comfort food and old favorites. It is also a great time to discover new favorites. That’s where this comes in. Pork and tomatillo stew. A hearty dish with vegetables and tomatillos with a seasoned pork that nearly shreds itself. Oh, and this is a perfect dish to serve at a pumpkin carving party. Just saying.
DRINK: It’s time for delicious warm adult beverages. Start here.
Hot Apple Cider Rum Punch. This is as easy as it gets. Just as important, it’s an easy recipe to double. Or triple. Because people will drink this. And then go back for more. In this way, it is kind of dangerous, but moderation in all things, right? It tastes like fall, pumpkin-spice be damned. You can even make it with Honeycrisp Cider. Personally, I would add some cloves but that’s me. Finally, it is a perfect drink for a…wait for it…pumpkin carving party.
READ: A Ray Bradbury short story that will creep you out.
Or, if you prefer, listen. True story – I heard this read to me before reading it myself, when I was in high school. It has stayed with me since. It is not one of Bradbury’s best known stories, but it is one of his darkest. It’s a quick read that seems, as is the case with Bradbury, ahead of it’s time.
Tim Johnstone is Dappered’s music correspondent as well as our resident gatherer of all things interwebs related. He’s currently undergoing a Tim Improvement Project™ (Version 4.0). It’s not pretty.