Toronto has committed a false spring. The weather became warmer, the snow melted, and I was feeling ready for summer. Except it stormed a few days later, the air is frigid, and hand lotion can no longer heal my dry skin. In other words, Toronto pulled a “hey, you want spring? Here’s spring! Yeah, you want it? Want it? Yeah? Well, you can’t it! HAHA!”
Very rude, Toronto.
Since we are back into winter, (pause to glare at Toronto) it’s back to fuzzy socks, knitted blankets, and hot chocolate. And, of course, soup! Now we still have time to gather all of this things and tell ghost stories by a bright fireplace.
I love ghost stories. They are fun to listen to and to tell, especially the ridiculous ones. And let’s be honest, most of them are hilarious. Yet realistic or not, they are the only thing you can think of at night when you are trying to fall asleep.
Let’s keep these silly stories in perspective. They are all the copycats of each other. Seriously. If you want to create a ghost story, here’s a checklist:
All the Elements of a Ghost Story
- a creepy artifact such as:
- a doll
- a crown
- a dollhouse
- a Micky Mouse mask
- a necklace
- a mysterious box
- a jewel
- an unidentifiable potion
- a family moving into a new house
- They inherited from a great uncle they never knew they had.
- All the neighbors are afraid of the house.
- Somebody was murdered in that house.
- There’s a creepy attic/basement.
- The family finds a scary painting or rolls of old-fashioned film.
- The daughter or son get a freaky imaginary friend or insists there are monsters in their bedroom.
- Despite all these warning signs, the parents do not listen.
- Other freaky settings
- a haunted forest
- a graveyard
- a circus (because clowns)
- a long stretch empty road (and the car breaks down)
- an insane asylum
- A paranormal monster/killer
- creepy hitchhikers
- crazy serial killers with a signature weapon or killing style
- possessed children
- The Protagonists
- an uninspired writer searching for a muse
- a child with no friends
- a woman with a crazy ex
- a group of social outcasts, including:
- the scaredy cat
- the daredevil
- the intellectual nerd/hacker
- the one that survives
Now take an element from each category and BAM! There’s your ghost story. While you are huddling around the fire, relating this epic tale, don’t forget the soup!
Squash Pear Soup
- 1 butternut squash, peeled and chopped
- 5 cored and chopped pears
- 2 onions, diced
- 2 tbsp grapeseed oil
- 4 cups water
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp minced garlic
- 1/2 cup almond milk
- Saute the onions in the grapeseed oil in a medium-sized pot.
- Add the rest of the ingredients except the almond milk into the pot.
- Bring to a boil and then simmer for 2-3 hours.
- Add the almond milk and puree the soup.
- Serve hot. (If freezing the soup, do not add the almond milk until you reheat it.)