Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Jack-o-Lanterns

We were major procrastinators on carving the pumpkins this year. Part of it is that in our variable fall weather, you don't want to carve them too soon or you will have a heap of goo by Halloween. But, we've never waited til 4pm on Halloween day to get started before.

After finishing their homework, both kids decided that it was time to carve pumpkins. Hmm, well, yes, let's get started - remembering that we needed to be done and eating dinner by 5:15, this doesn't leave much time.

A got the newspaper and started covering the front porch. I got the knives and big spoons and M got the pumpkins. While I started cutting away a top for A's pumpkin I asked both kids to get a piece of scratch paper and draw a picture of what they wanted their pumpkin to look like. I looked at A's picture - very nice but only the size of a quarter - on a full sheet of paper! I told A to draw it bigger and this time he drew a pumpkin face about the size of a silver dollar. When I saw M's face was similarly quarter sized, I drew a face about 2/3 the sheet of paper for him to fill in.

Then I got M to cut the top off his pumpkin. He did a very nice job and only needed a tiny bit of help at the end, mostly because his pumpkin had no stem. I trimmed up both lids and made a smoke vent.

Then I got a bowl and let the kids have at the pumpkin guts. Yes, I'm a mean mom and make the kids participate fully in jack-o-lantern making. They got out most of the pumpkin seeds and guts, using the spoons and their hands. While they washed up, I finished gutting the pumpkins and then it was time to carve.

Yes, I let both kids carve their own pumpkin. A has his whittling chip now and thus has learned his knife safety, so I let him start carving his own pumpkin.


A did need a bit of help in getting the pumpkin bits out after he cut them, and I helped him enlarge the features - the original eyes were nice, but too small to let any light through.

M did almost all of his pumpkin. I just widened the nose lines a bit so we could see them better.


Here are both pumpkins. I had to steady the camera to get a photo without flash (otherwise the candlelight doesn't really show up).

A's pumpkin on the left, M's on the right

2 Comments:

Blogger Carol P. said...

4pm? On Halloween! I thought we were pushing it by doing it on Sunday! But they turned out great!

We had to put one of those push-on lights in our pumpkin (on top of wax paper, so the light didn't get gooey) because the wind was blowing so hard we couldn't keep a candle lit.

11:40 AM  
Blogger Katherine said...

Well, yes, we're great procrastinators about pumpkin carving. I had thought we would do it on Sunday afternoon, but the kids were busy playing. I didn't see much point in making them carve pumpkins - its no skin off my teeth if they don't get done.
It was in the 70's last week, so I didn't want to carve any more than about 2 days before or it gets too yucky to get in and light the candle. This year I remembered to take out the candle holder the day after Halloween - I don't want to think about the year that I didn't do it for a week. shudder

9:44 PM  

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