I’ve always been a sucker for tradition. I love the different opportunities for traditions that this time of year brings: the carved pumpkins, fireworks displays, toffee apples and *whispers* run up to Christmas.
The thing is, I am time poor. Not only that, but I have rosy ideas of how something will be that often leave me disappointed. Take last year, for example. I had a beautiful image of spending a cosy afternoon sitting around the log fire and carving pumpkins with my (then) two year old. In my head, we would peacefully create something pretty to be displayed in the window, complete with gently flickering candle.
In reality, there was a tantrum (I may have been a bit of a control freak about how the pumpkin should look) and the cosy log fire kept going out, so we were cold and thoroughly hacked off. I was left red-faced and sweaty as I attempted to remove every last bit of pulp from the hugest pumpkin known to man, while my feral child took her nappy off and rolled around the kitchen floor screaming. It was not my finest parenting moment.
The year before that, I gave up on the pumpkin carving altogether. Instead, I opted for some glitter, ribbons and googly eyes and let my baby go mad with the glue. The result? Six months of picking glitter out from between my toes and a rather tatty, slightly crazed pumpkin that was far more scary than any others in the village.
This year I almost didn’t do a pumpkin. In spite of loving the idea of it, the reality has always proved too much of a let down. But as we wandered past the impressive collection on show in the supermarket, Frog yelled “PUMPKINS!” and I really couldn’t face a tantrum by the carrots, so I relented.
Our pumpkin this year is not a face. By the time I had removed the pulp, set the seeds aside, cut out the flesh for soup and carved the lid out, I didn’t have the energy to create a complicated face. Unsurprisingly, Frog wasn’t too bothered about actually helping. She happily watched for a bit before trotting off, telling me to call her when it was time for the fun bit of lighting the candle.
This is the result. I think I prefer it to a scary face anyway…
We decided to display this pumpkin as part of World Vision’s Night Of Hope campaign. You can find out more about it and get involved yourself by checking out the #ANightOfHope hashtag on Twitter.