I like that holidays here are sprinkled with salt water. On Saturday we dressed Abigail in her cow costume and headed to the aquarium for some Halloween fun. We meandered around playing games, looked at exhibits we’d seen a hundred times, and said hello as we bumped into friends from town. The weather was perfect at 60 degrees and sunny, the fog holding off until we drove home.
Today was reserved for pumpkin carving. I probably make a bigger deal out of carving pumpkins than necessary, but my dad was a great pumpkin carver. I still remember the year he carved, “Trick or Treat” into one of our 3 pumpkins. This was back in the day when geometric shapes had a monopoly on jack-o-lanterns.
On Halloween, I remember waiting eagerly for my dad to return from work. When he got home we would spread out newspapers and sketch our designs on white paper. We’d push up our sleeves and help pull out gooey pumpkin guts. Then he would carefully carve each face just as we had envisioned it onto our pumpkin with a knife from the kitchen drawer. No fancy kit. No stencil.
We’d get dressed in a hurry and head out for old fashioned trick or treating door to door in our neighborhood. Over time we learned which houses liked to give out frights in addition to treats. I was always content to hang back on the street for those houses, ghostbusters being about as scary as I liked things.
This year we decided to carve our favorite monster onto our family pumpkin. Abigail danced to “Sarah’s Totally Rad Playlist” on my iPod when she got bored of counter sitting. I scooped out seeds to roast. We popped popcorn and fired up the DVR to watch Charlie Brown. Abigail had a few mini breakdowns but it was nothing a cow costume or Elmo pasta couldn’t solve.
Hank, dying to be a part of things, chipped in to clean up. Okay, okay. This is totally disgusting, but can your dog do that?! We let him because it was a holiday and as Ryan said, “You need to keep it real on that blog of yours.” Is that keeping it real enough?
There were lots of things that made this Halloween special, but the one I want to remember forever is the diaper-clad toddler that exclaimed, “Baboooo!” (aka Elmo) upon seeing her finished jack-o-lantern.
Have a safe and happy Halloween, friends!