Happy Halloween!

by Ashley Weeks Cart

Yesterday, we carved our pumpkin. And by WE carved, I mean the kids hovered around me for about 5 minutes, before deciding the entire process was wholly boring, and I proceeded to carve alone for the remaining two hours. Sunny, as in years’ past, refused to even touch the pumpkin innards while Courtland DELIGHTED in the ooey gooey awesome that is gutting a pumpkin. The process looked a little something like this.

First there was great hugging of the pumpkins. Perhaps this explains her refusal to “gut” the pumpkin. She loved it too dearly to inflict disembowelment? Question mark?

Then James did the dramatic honors of removing the top of the pumpkin. Imagine theĀ *Eee Eee Eee* “stab” sound effect as you gaze at this image.

Then Kaki and I gutted. Sunny looked on with clean hands.

We saved the seeds for roasting. For me, this is why I commit to carving every year, for the fresh roasted pumpkin seeds. Totally worth spending an afternoon covered in pumpkin juice.

The girls got bored. Quickly. And abandoned Mama on the porch.

I attached my stencil to the pumpkin. To “sketch” the design I used a push pin to mark the lines of the drawing and then used those teeny tiny carving tools to remove the negative space.

Once carved, I rinsed the seeds, dried ’em, laid ’em out on a pan, covered them in olive oil and salt and roasted them for 15-20 minutes at 400 degrees F (tossing once to keep the toasting even). Sunny and I enjoyed these as a snack while watching “Mirror Mirror” together that evening.

Once dark, James did the honors of capturing our pumpkin illuminated on the porch. Sadly, since we live in rural Vermont at the end of a dead end dirt road, we’ll have no Trick or Treaters to welcome tonight. But the pumpkin feels friendly despite this reality, no? To make up for our barren surroundings, we’ll bring the kids into town and go Trick or Treating with some friends in a more bustling neighborhood. Happy Halloween to all!