Pumpkin Carving 2011

9 Nov

For this post, I’m going to ask you to think back — back to a time of pumpkins and carvings and cool weather and costumes. Yes, all the way back to Halloween 2011. A few weeks ago, Zack and I hosted a pumpkin carving party with our pals, and it was a total blast. We indulged in Halloween-y cake, orange margaritas, baked pumpkin seeds, and various fall-themed beers, and had a wonderful time. Some of our guests were actually carving their very first pumpkins, and nobody lost any limbs*, so we’re considering it a win.

*I feel like losing appendages was a more valid concern, but none of those were lost either, so double win.

Before the party, Zack and I decorated our porch with Halloween items, like fake spiderwebs, a string of pumpkin lights, creepy gauze and a somewhat-indulgent-but-man-do-I-love-decorations strobe light with accompanying thunder sounds*. Zack put an arm out in front of me while I stood on our rickety living room wooden chair, nailing our decor to the roof of our porch. It got me in the spirit, and I went crazy on our front door, too, thinking this would bring tons of Trick-or-Treaters to our door. It didn’t. We had two kids stop by, and they didn’t even say “Trick-or-Treat**!” This left us with enough candy to give 10 horses cavities.

After we were well-decorated, it was time to get some pumpkins and our pals. Zack and I got 3, deciding we’d each do our own, and then do a “shared” pumpkin. Zack decided on his fantastic Jack(White)-o-Lantern, because he still had his stained glass pieces to put it together. I went with a stencil I found in our carving books that came with the kits. It was a bat-cat! I was sold. For our “shared” ‘kin, I decided to freehand and attempt our Rock Love Austin header, and it turned out really well!

*The rest of the decorations were cool, but that thunder strobe light thing was a total mistake. There is nothing halloween-y about strobe lights or thunder. I think that thing may get “lost” by Halloween 2012. Apparently Zack has decided this is the post where he gets to come in and be an ass. I’m keeping my strobe light.

**I’m really disappointed those shy little girls didn’t say Trick-Or-Treat. My Twitter friends insisted I not give out any more candy unless the kids said those three magic words, but no more kids came! I couldn’t be the “Trick-Or-Treat” snob as Rob called me.

My work friend Thao had never carved a pumpkin before, and she said she wanted to go for something stereotypically Asian, since she is Asian. Hers ended up just looking adorable (kawaii!) She also is to thank for all of these fabulous photos. Thanks, Thao!

Our pal Caitlin* DeWeese was a master at carving. She made this adorable cat pumpkin, plus a fantastic freehanded Texas pumpkin. *The Other Caitlin was a pro. That free-handed Texas was so cool, I wish we had a pic of it.

Caitlin’s cat in progress. I love that you can see her Ben Kweller “Sha Sha” wrist tattoos.

Eric and Lisa’s couple pumpkin was spookily adorable. They teamed up and did a great job.

Even though Alex’s fiance Santi is now working in Mexico, he was with us, in spirit and in pumpkin. Alex carved his likeness into her gourd.

This was the stencil I used for my cat pumpkin. It was tricky, with a lot of little parts, but I was very pleased with the end result.

The cat pumpkin, in all of its carved glory.

Here are most of the pumpkins, carved and lit.

We worked so hard, we bent and broke most of our carving utensils.

The guts of our pumpkins produced a ridiculous amount of seeds. Alex was kind enough to wash them all, and then we baked them with my mom’s recipe of butter and parmesan cheese. Delightful!

This is the left half of my free-handed Rock Love Austin pumpkin. I was really pleased with how the RAWK!* hand turned out.

*This was my favorite pumpkin, hands down. It’s still the background picture on my timeline. 

And the right side! Not too bad, if I do say so myself.

And here is the Jack(White)-o-Lantern! It didn’t progress much further than this* – it got a nose, and we put the wig and hat on it this year, which ended up getting sucked into the pumpkin because we left all of them out on the porch far too long and they molded over like crazy. Nothing is less fun than scooping moldy pumpkin guts into a trash bag and carrying 80+ pounds of that goosh downstairs**. That was the scariest part of my Halloween. But! The carving party was a success, so it’s totally worth it.

*This may be because I didn’t start until everyone else was almost done and gave up to yell at bikers riding by on the porch…

**Caitlin decided to carry all 5 pumpkins down in one garbage bag, without assistance when I wasn’t home. What a trooper! I take back my “Zack is being an ass” comment. Thanks, hon.

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One Response to “Pumpkin Carving 2011”

  1. Caitlin DeWeese November 10, 2011 at 2:54 pm #

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