It was a fun and eventful time while carving our pumpkins this year. Although at first, a bit discouraging. I spent a bit of time planning and tweaking a design for my pumpkin. I went with a flying dove, wings looking like fire (both symbols of the Holy Spirit) with the Triquetra (symbol of the Holy Trinity) behind it. But after sitting down to start, I realized my drawing was way too big for my pumpkin. (No, I didn't think to check the size before I started) And do you want to know the ugly truth? I sat and pouted about it for much longer than any grown woman should. I really didn't want to re-draw my design to a smaller size. So, after wasting much time feeling sorry for myself, I finally just measured my pumpkin and drew a monstrance a size that I knew would actually fit.
No big deal. I need to learn to accept disappointments and move on. I used myself as an example to teach the kids that lesson. Take the good from the bad, right? Everything for a reason.
Little Miss Chatterbox wanted to paint her pumpkin because she didn't want hers to get all shriveled up and ugly. She made sure Mike knew NOT to cut HER pumpkin. Yes, she is a lover of beauty.
Since she was painting her pumpkin, her brothers naturally wanted to follow her lead and asked if they could paint their pumpkins too. So they did.
(Yes, Jan. I think you're right about the growth spurt. Look at this big kid! I get the boys mixed up all the time now)
My plan was to carve their designs for them after the pumpkins dried. Mr. Funny wanted a flaming sword (symbol of St. Michael) and Mr. Tickle wanted "feed the poor". A symbol for one of the corporal works of mercy? What a great idea! Mike teaches religion to the kids every Sunday and had just taught them the corporal works of mercy. He also showed them clips of Mother Teresa helping the poor. This must have struck a chord in my sweet Mr. Tickle. I drew the designs on paper for their little pumpkins, but alas, it was not to be. You see, I had bought a pumpkin from Wal-Mart a few weeks back when the kids and I wanted to plant mums and pansies and make our house look fall. The pumpkin was only $3.88. So, when we went to the pumpkin patch and ended up spending more money than we had planned , we decided to just buy one pumpkin and get the others at Wal-Mart. Well, when I went to get the pumpkins they were sold out. I had Mr. Tickle and Little Miss Sunshine with me and I didn't feel like driving all over town looking for pumpkins. Then, I found some little ones in the produce section for pumpkin pie. I bought three of those thinking they were perfect for the kids. Turns out those suckers and really hard to cut through. In fact, I couldn't cut through them at all. So, I drew the symbols instead. Mr. Funny was a little upset, but after learning from his mother's mistakes, he got over it quickly and was happy that he at least got to paint his pumpkin and was proud of his work.
Mike carved out the Sacred Heart.
It's his favorite thing to draw so I wasn't surprised that he chose it for his pumpkin. He did a great job too! And while he was carving it out, Little Miss Chatterbox walked up behind him to watch. He lifted the pumpkin up to get a look from a different angle when Little Miss Chatterbox said, "Dad, there's a spider on the bottom of your pumpkin!" Without a moment of hesitation, Mike stabbed it with his knife. "Geez. Jodi, check out the size of this thing." I could tell right away that it was a black widow because Little Miss Chatterbox had spotted one in the summer time. I told Mike it was a black widow but he said it didn't have a red hour glass on it's back. I told him that's because it would be on the stomach. He turned it to look and sure enough, there was the red hour glass.
Thank God LMC spotted it! I can't image having a black widow loose in my house. I thought about how blessed we were that Mike happened to pick out that pumpkin to carve and that he happened to lift up the pumpkin right when LMC was there to spot it. Then I thought back to my ugly moment of pouting like a little spoiled child because I had told mike that I wished I had his pumpkin because it was bigger than mine. He had already started so we couldn't trade. Did I wonder what would have happened if I had gotten that pumpkin? Yes, of course I did. I know I would have noticed that it was a black widow right away and I would have gotten scared that it was so close to me and I would probably have screamed and dropped my pumpkin and the spider would probably have gotten away. Or jumped onto me. Or worse. I had Little Miss Sunshine in my lap. It could have jumped on her. I didn't want to think about that anymore. Then I wondered if anyone would have even noticed it all if I had been the one to have that pumpkin. Like I said, everything for a reason.
(Little Miss Sunshine was very interested in the pumpkin)
Despite all our mishaps, we had a good time and successfully completed our pumpkins.
(And enjoyed some seasonal pumpkin ale by Samuel Adams. It's very good. Go try some while you can if you haven't already.)
This will be a night that the Shaffer family will not soon forget.