October 18th, 2013
Have you ever wanted to go sit in a pumpkin patch and wait for The Great Pumpkin like Linus Van Pelt from Peanuts? Or do you love buying a variety of pumpkins and decorating your home? Or do you like having a pumpkin carving contest? Or do you buy sugar pumpkins so you can bake some completely homemade pies?
No matter whether it’s one or all or your own reasons, pumpkins seem to make people smile. Perhaps it’s because they’re a sign of the Fall Harvest. And they are fun to carve and delicious to eat.
If you’re not sure where to find a local pumpkin patch, you can look them up at Pumpkin Patches And More website by state.
They even have a fun photo gallery of what pumpkin patches and corn mazes may look like.
Thanks to the History Channel website for some of this trivia:
Originally in Great Britain, turnips, beets and potatoes were carved into jack o’lanterns to ward off the spirits on Halloween night. When the Irish came to the United States, they used pumpkins instead.
Pumpkins are a member of the gourd family, which includes cucumbers, honeydew melons, cantaloupe, watermelons and zucchini. These plants are native to Central America and Mexico, but now grow on six continents. And yes, that makes them fruits, not vegetables.
In 1584, after French explorer Jacques Cartier explored the St. Lawrence region of North America, he reported finding “gros melons.” The name was translated into English as “pompions,” which has since evolved into the modern “pumpkin.”
- Choose the right pumpkin. I like them taller than they are wide because that is the shape of a face. I also like them big and ugly because that makes them look interesting.
- Decapitation or Back Surgery?: You don’t have to take off the top, you can also take of the bottom or the back,. I cut off the bottom if I want the top to look untouched and I cut off the back if I want to use the entire front, top, and bottom for a design.
- Cutting the Plug is the toughest thing to do because the top of the pumpkin is woody and tough. You need a strong blade. I use a drywall saw for this.
- Scoop the goop with an ice cream scoop. Scrape around the sides, starting from the hole opening to the bottom. Then, after all of the walls are scraped, dump the pumpkin into the trash. Easy!
- Draw the face with dry erase markers because if you don’t like your work, you can erase it!
- Use power tools to carve the pumpkins.
- Great Props Are Everywhere. I look for fun props everywhere, but my favorite places are the grocery store, home depot, and the craft store.
- Preserving Your Pumpkin with bathroom cleaner with bleach. This keeps the bugs, mold, and animals away.
First, clean and dry out those pumpkin seeds because you will want to roast them for a super healthy and delicious snack. Then roast them at 325F for 20 minutes, and don’t forget to use some oil to get them crisp. Some people soak or boil them in salt water before they roast, others salt after they’re done. You can soak in other solutions like chili lime. And you can sprinkle on lots of seasonings.
And now for more pumpkin recipes:
Pumpkins…they’re not just for Thanksgiving anymore! Would you enjoy a pumpkin cheesecake? Or pumpkin bread? What are you interested in creating?