Jack-o-Lanterns

The boys begin carving.

We get pumpkins (or grow pumpkins) to put out on our front stoop every year.  But somehow, this is the first year we’ve ever carved pumpkins.  I don’t know how this is true, but it is.  I think I always assumed that it would be a huge messy hassle with 4 little kids and that Matt and I would end up doing 99.9% of the work and somehow, somewhere, there would be tears.  Possibly mine.

I don’t even know what made me change my mind this year and mention pumpkin carving.  But I did and we did and it was AWESOME.  I loved it, Matt loved it, the kids loved it, no one cried, and the pumpkins came out great.  New favorite holiday tradition!

We got a few pumpkin carving tool sets from the grocery store for $5 or so.  We got three sets because if there was only one, we would have had constant arguments and the whole process would have taken three times as long.  Matt helped the kids open their pumpkins and they each scooped their own seeds and pulp out. 

G and O scooping guts.

I thought the kids might be squeamish about scooping all the pumpkin guts, but they weren’t at all.  They used the little scooping tools but they also just used their hands. 

At first they boys wanted to use some of the templates that came with the tool kits, but then G decided he just wanted a scary jack-o-lantern and the other two boys decided they wanted happy jack-o-lanterns.  Too easy. 

All three older kids drew their own templates and cut the shapes out almost without assistance.  I was AMAZED at how self-sufficient they were on this project.  Q is only 3 years old, so he had lots of help from Matt, but even he did a lot of the cutting.

B’s pumpkin is the most unusual–she decided to do an owl.  Using ideas she found online, she created her own design and cut it all out herself and it really came out awesome. 

We got some battery-powered tea lights to put inside them and I am so excited about how they turned out and how much fun the whole process was–I was worried for nothing and now I know this is going to be an annual event we all enjoy!

Q’s happy little guy, O’s smiling jack-o-lantern, G’s angry pumpkin, and B’s pretty owl.

Happy Halloween!  Tomorrow is the big night and I am already excited about a Halloween costume photo shoot!

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