Quantcast
DECK THE HOLIDAY'S: 07/18/12

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

13 FACTS ABOUT VAMPIRES!





    Almost every culture in the world has its own vampire legend, and some date back thousands of years. Today, we are most familiar with Count Dracula and other folklore from Eastern Europe. Do you want to learn more? Here is a wealth of juicy trivia to sink your fangs into sink your fangs into this Halloween season.

1. Was the first vampire a woman? The oldest known vampire legends come from Babylonian and Sumerian mythology. Female demons called the Lilu were said to hunt women and children at night, and drink their blood.

2. Vlad III Tepes, also known as Vlad Dracul, was known for his incredible cruelty; he was alleged to have killed up to 30,000 people at one time! His bloodthirsty reputation inspired Bram Stoker's Dracula.

3. The National Retail Federation listed "Vampire" as the second most popular adult Halloween costume in 2005. Vampires were the sixteenth most popular children's costume for the same year.








4. While modern pop culture usually portrays vampires as sensual and romantic, other countries don't see them that way: the Ghanan Asasabonsam vampire has iron teeth and hooks for feet - which they drop from treetops onto unsuspecting victims.

5. Some believe that Cain was the first vampire, cursed by God for slaying his brother, Abel. This theory is frequently found in popular films and games.

6. In 1992, Francis Ford Coppola's "Dracula" movie won seven awards, including three Oscars.






7. Stakes, fire and sunlight aren't the only ways to kill a vampire. Other cultures recommend beheading a vampire, boiling it in vinegar, pounding a nail through its navel, or scattering birdseed on its tomb.

8. In Latin American folklore, El Chupacabras is a supernatural creature that drinks the blood of animals - usually chickens and goats.

9. According to popular tradition, vampires can shape-shift into wolves, bats, or clouds of mist.

10. In March 2007, self-proclaimed vampire hunters entered the tomb of Slobodan Milosevic and staked his body through the heart.








11. The medical condition porphyria has been blamed for many reports of vampirism. Its victims develop pale skin, sensitivity to sunlight, receding gums which make their teeth appear larger, and severe anemia- the cure for which, in ages past, might have included drinking animals' blood.

12. In the 17th Century, Countess Bathory of Hungary was said to bathe in human blood in order to preserve her beauty. Some even accused her of vampirism.





13. Vampire bats were named after vampires, not vice-versa.

GIANT S'MORES STUFFED CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE!

   This recipe I found at www.smells-like-home.com.   I hope you enjoy making these kind of campfire cookies.  Good luck!









I swear I wasn’t going to do this. I wasn’t going to stuff something inside of something else. It was too trendy. And then, not trendy at all. (Neither of which I’m actually about, anyway.)






But I succumbed to the pressure of a college kid who just finished finals. A college kid who squeaked with excitement when she exhaled the love she had for these s’mores stuffed chocolate chip cookies in a quick and breathless sentence. I told her that the only conditions I had to making them was that the graham cracker and cookie dough had to be homemade. And frankly, if we had put a little forethought into this, the marshmallows would have been too. She had no issues with my conditions.







S’mores stuffed into thick and chewy chocolate chip cookies. A total diet/healthy lifestyle buster. But damn, it’s worth it. I’ve gone on a few times about how magical my favorite cookie dough recipe is and it just stands to reason that I would have chosen it for these giant creations as well. Yesterday I posted about homemade graham crackers and yup, we used that recipe too. The deeply flavored brown sugar graham crackers were an outstanding choice to use here and they certainly didn’t get lost amid the gobs of cookie. Of course, the marshmallows and Hershey’s chocolate bars (is there no better option for s’mores?) melted into everything and admittedly, there were a few nerve wracking minutes of watching the conversion from cookie brick to enormous cookie rounds as all of the components settled into each other in the oven.







But alas, perfection. Gooey s’mores nestled into my favorite chocolate chip cookie. At nearly 6 inches a piece, you’ll probably need a friend to help you finish off these monsters (and at least a couple glasses of milk) but since there is so much cookie to go around, sharing shouldn’t be an issue. Or, I supposed you could just make them smaller for single servings, but where’s the fun in that?
So there. I went there and now I’m sharing it with you. It’s a holiday weekend – go celebrate!

BORYEONG MUD FESTIVAL FROM SOUTH KOREA!






   The Boryeong Mud Festival is an annual festival which takes place during the summer in Boryeong, a town around 200 km south of Seoul, South Korea. The first Mud Festival was staged in 1998 and, by 2007, the festival attracted 2.2 million visitors to Boryeong.
   The mud is taken from the Boryeong mud flats, and trucked to the Daecheon beach area, where it is used as the centrepiece of the 'Mud Experience Land'. The mud is considered rich in minerals and used to manufacture cosmetics. The festival was originally conceived as a marketing vehicle for Boryeong mud cosmetics.
   Although the festival takes place over a period of around two weeks, it is most famous for its final weekend, which is popular with Korea's western population. The final weekend of the festival usually falls on the second weekend in July.








History of the Festival

   In 1996 a range of cosmetics was produced using mud from the Boryeong mud flats. The cosmetics were said to be full of minerals, bentonites, and germaniums, all of which occur naturally in the mud from the area.
   In order to promote these cosmetics, the Boryeong Mud Festival was conceived. Through this festival, it was hoped people would learn more about the mud and the cosmetics. The festival has become popular with both Koreans and western tourists, as well as American Military personnel stationed in the country, and foreign English teachers working in Korea.
   The festival attracted some controversy in 2009 when a group of school children attending the festival developed skin rashes after contact with the mud.








Attractions

   For the period of the festival several large attractions are erected in the seafront area of Daecheon. These include a mud pool, mud slides, mud prison and mud skiing competitions. Colored mud is also produced for body painting. A large stage is erected on the beach, which is used for live music, competitions and various other visual attractions.
   A small market runs along the seafront selling cosmetics made using the mud from Boryeong. Various health and beauty clinics offer massages, acupuncture and other treatments utilising the medicinal qualities of the mud. The festival is closed with a large firework display.