Okay, so I’ve never been the type to be chipper around the holidays. Losing family members around that time of year doesn’t help. The true spirit of the holiday was sucked out of it long ago, thanks to commercialism. A barrage of disgruntled shoppers and the whole snatch-n-grab race at the stores, plus the whole ‘gimmie, gimmie, gimmie’ attitude make me turn away in disgust. I like The Grinch. My only favorite holiday story is A Christmas Carol, because of the creep-factor it offers. (Can you imagine being visited by all those ghosts–especially the last one?) But my favorite holiday icon? Krampus. Never heard of him? Probably not, as most folks do not want to hear of such a darker charater so closely associated with a time of supposed mirth and joy, not to mention hanging around such a jolly old elf like Santa…
Krampus is interpreted a bit differently in other countries, but they can all round out to Krampus being Santa’s ‘evil brother’, ‘alter ego’… or even the yin to Santa’s yang. Krampus is a demon who comes along with Santa to punish all the children who have been bad throughout the year, while Santa carries on his gift-giving duties to the good ones. Krampus is depicted as wearing chains, and is covered in fur having a very goatlike face with a long red tongue. He also carries a switch or stick to beat those same bad little childern. (That would definitely make any kid straighten up their act, wouldn’t it?) Krampus Night is celebrated mostly in Austria on St. Nicholas Day Eve. A similiar being of German myth called Ruebezahl, is a combination of both this demon and Santa, looking like a really big, evil-looking version of St. Nick.
To lighten that bit of that Yuletide eeriness, I’d like to offer a delicious holiday drink recipe, which should hopefully keep you warm and toasty during this cold season.
5 c. apple cider
3 c. dry red wine
1/4 c. packed brown sugar
1/2 tsp. whole cloves
1/4 tsp. whole allspice
1 stick of cinnamon (approx. 3″ long)
Combine spices in a cheesecloth or coffee filter, etc, to keep them from floating around. Put everything in a 3 1/2 to 6 qt. slow cooker and cook on low heat for approx 3-4 hrs. Remove spices and cinnamon befor serving.
If you’d like a non-alcoholic recipe, just use 8 c. of cider. This recipe makes sixteen one-half cup servings. Enjoy!
Now for the giveaway! I’ll be offering a holiday-themed hair accessory and earrings from my Etsy shop, Mistress Rae’s Decadent Designs (www.Etsy.com/shop/MistressRae13), and I’d like to invite everyone to download a copy of “ABRAXAS: A Very Merry Something” –a free short story from The ABRAXAS Series. (http://www.lulu.com/product/ebook/abraxas-a-very-merry-something/6169875?productTrackingContext=author_spotlight_282362_) If the link gives you a problem, just email me at gratistavampires(at)yahoo(dot)com and I’ll send you a copy. Happy holidays, everyone!
About the Author: Ms. Cinsearae S. is the Editor/Publisher of award-winning Dark Gothic Resurrected Magazine and a graphic designer for Damnation Books and independent authors. Author of The Abraxas Series, Boleyn: Tudor Vampire, and In The Beginning (published through Black Bed Sheet Books), Cinsearae is an avid lover of all things gothic and horrific, and is a huge Vincent Price fan. She lives with her husband and two rat terriers, aptly named Hades and Chaos. Visit her at http://BloodTouch.webs.com, plus find ‘The ABRAXAS Series’ and more of her works at www.lulu.com/gratistavampires. Feel free to add her as a friend on Facebook and find her on Twitter.