We finally got to carve our pumpkins! Once the boys got home from school and Svea took a nap, we brought some newspapers outside to the patio table and set up the pumpkin carving station. Anders got out a pen and drew a face on his before we removed any of the seeds, so we cut the back off instead of the top. Other than the fact that it falls out if you move the pumpkin, it worked really well to get the gunk out from the side rather than the top. Was much less messy up your arms since there was a shorter distance to the sides of the pumpkin. I worked on Svea's, and both Jeff and I helped the boys with theirs. We noticed a distinct difference between the pumpkins at home -which have been bred and hybridized to not have much stuff inside- and these. I haven't seen this many seeds in a long time! We were grateful that we hadn't bought the huge pumpkins we saw last week, and opted for medium-sized ones instead. They were a perfect size, and lit up nicely when a tea light was put inside. I took this picture about 6:15, and it was already very dark outside.
Torben decided he wanted a one-eyed monster for his, so that is what he drew. Jeff helped him out with the carving part. We didn't see any pumpkin carving kits with safety knives here -nor did we expect to- so the kids drew and the parents carved. He added some pumpkin seeds for "hair" just for this picture, and then took them off again so we can bake them.
Anders wanted a scary one, so he drew a very jagged mouth, and the eyes were so close to the top of it, they almost leaned into the stem. Jeff moved the eyes down a bit from the drawing, and Anders was very pleased with the results.
While I was scooping and scraping the insides out of Svea's pumpkin, I noticed there was a fairly large rotten spot in it. Incidentally, it was a perfect circle and made for a very nice nose for a friendly pumpkin!
She was very excited to wake up from her nap and see the three carved pumpkins on the steps outside the door. She loves pumpkins. Every time she sees them around town, she yells "pumpkin!" and points to them. Often she starts giggling as well. And if they are lit up, she says "ooh, pretty!"
It was a bit chilly out for pumpkins, as it so often is in October in late afternoon, but we really had a fun time with the boys. Jeff and I took turns with the camera and helped the boys with theirs also.
It was a fun afternoon activity. The boys had been looking forward to it for several days, so it was great that the weather was perfect and they were so pleased with what their jack-o-lanterns looked like. It's fun here that Halloween is more of a "season" than a day. They haven't really talked about trick-or-treating (the kids here do something similar in February, but not now), but have been excited about pumpkins. We still may craft some sort of costumes for them and have them go door-to-door in the dorms to trick or treat for a bit of candy. We'll see. They really are doing such a great job with adapting to new customs and traditions here. Every once in a while they talk about things they are excited to do when we get back home (like eat at Guadalajara -Anders mentioned that the other night) but for the most part they really seem to be embracing this experience.
Svea is definitely turning into a full-fledged-card-carrying toddler. Though her general disposition is happy -and I hope she remains that way her whole life- she has her moments where the emotions get the better of her. This photo is sort of classic, and I intend to print it out for the wall at home.
This was from dinner last night. She seemed intent on putting her finger in her nose, and I told her that was icky. I don't even think I told her not to do it; just told her it was icky. And she fell apart. Tears, crying, brief high-pitched shrieks. I guess it's good she is in touch with her emotions.