Tuesday, October 27, 2009


Years ago, when Sierra was maybe four years old, she and I were walking though a parking lot to the grocery store. She was holding my hand and skipping, and then she stopped dead and said, "Punkamins!" with all of the joy a 4-year old can hold. There were rows and rows of pumpkins on hay bales in front of the store, and they looked wonderful.

Last night I went to Marla's for an annual pumpkin carving. I say annual because it is for them, but I actually haven't done it for a few years. I'd forgotten how much fun pumpkin carving is.

The boys were pretty happy when they heard what we were doing that night, and as soon as dinner was done, they grabbed their chosen pumpkins, hunkered down and dove in. Side note - all of these pumpkins came from their garden.

William is a bit young to be let loose with sharp knives, so we just took a cute picture of him, and then took everything away. He seemed to be ok with that, and just went into the living room to play with his toys. Every now and then he'd come back and check on us, ask to be held, get a look at what we were doing, and then run off again.

Jonah took his pumpkin very seriously. I underestimated that kid. I really thought that either Marla or I would be doing most of the work for him, but he did the whole thing all by himself, even the gutting. Mike (Marla's husband) cut the tops off, and then Jonah dug in up to his elbows in goop and started pulling that stuff out with real gusto.

In the mean time I worked on my pumpkin, which went something like this, "Ick this stuff is slimy. I can't get it all out! Gah, there's all this stringy stuffy. My hands are a mess. Will someone get me a paper towel!" Marla took over for me. She dug in there with a spoon and got all of the string along with a thin layer of pumpkin leaving just the smooth inside. Amazing. Jonah, who was sitting right next to me, said very matter-of-factly that he's "really good" at gutting, and showed me his perfectly clean pumpkin. I was honestly impressed.

Jonah then went to work at carving a face. First he took a stick-like tool and made an outline in dots, and then he got a small knife and went to work.
Zac, who is now 14 and way too cool for pumpkins, still joined in, but did so with a good dose of sarcasm and attitude.
Actually, Zac is a very good kid, and fun, even with the sarcasm and attitude.
Meanwhile, William, exhausted by all of the activity, decided to stretch out on the kitchen floor. Pumpkin carving is too hard.
Josh, like Jonah, was a professional carver, and finished off two pumpkins. Good work. He's also good at making a silly face when you want to take his picture, which is fun for all of us. Oh, and before you think that Zac is a master carver, I should tell that what he's holding is a fake. It's a plastic decoration.

Josh, hard at work. I'm noticing all of the pop bottles around the kitchen. We're big drinkers. It's part of our Minnesota heritage. You shouldn't let go of your culture. By the end of the evening we had a good collection of jack-o-lanterns, and I should have taken a picture of them, but I didn't, so you'll have to trust me.
William was on his way to bed about the time that I left for home, and I got a very nice goodnight hug. He's so sweet, and a good cuddler. Cuddling is the best.
I'm going back over on Saturday for trick-or-treating. It was so fun last year, and the kids have good costumes, so I'm pretty excited about it.
Happy Halloween!


Tiffany said...

That last photo is the cutest. I love a good cuddler!

Kelli said...

I agree with Tiff! That last photo is adorable. That William is the sweetest little thing!