Saturday, October 29, 2011

Painting Pumpkins

For the first time at the daycare, we made a jack-o-lantern. I initially encouraged the kids to dig out the goo with their hands, but they weren't going for it. This was totally understandable since the stuff looks pretty disgusting, so I dug out the goo myself and separated the seeds while they watched. Then I gave them each a spoon, and we all worked on getting the rest of the pulp off the walls of the pumpkin. They really enjoyed picking the pulp up with their spoons and letting it plop onto the floor.

I told the kids they could try the pumpkin seeds after lunch. This prompted a meltdown for Noah, who wanted them NOW! He settled down after a while but showed his focus and determination by skipping lunch and holding out for the pumpkin seeds.

I guess it was worth the wait, because Noah loved them. So did B. Despite Aidas's initial excitement in the pumpkin seeds, he thoroughly loathed them. He spit them out and demanded that I get all the bits off his tongue! I thought that would be a bit excessive, and instead encouraged him to drink some water.

Another day, we painted small pumpkins. I gave them a tiny paint brush so that they could enjoy painting for longer than five seconds. They really had fun with this activity. 

Once they had dried, I put each of their initials on the pumpkins, and we set them out as decorations. Aren't they beautiful? I love all the Halloween decorations accumulating in our apartment!

Even though I carved the pumpkin, the kids got to choose the shape of the eyes, and whether the jack-o-lantern would be happy or sad, or mad. I set it out on the balcony.On a day when it was dark and rainy, I put the light inside (battery operated - no candle for us). The kids loved it. At one point, B. pulled up the little yellow chair and sat directly in front of the jack-o-lantern, studying it for some time. Oh so cute!

I had been trying to find pumpkin cookie cutters everywhere so that I could make jack-o-lantern cookies for our upcoming Halloween party. My mom found some that came as part of a pumpkin cookie making kit. Yes, I could have substituted this for the recipe that I was planning to use for our party, but instead we went ahead and made these cookies. Who says you can't have jack-o-lantern cookies twice in one week, right?

Aidas had not arrived yet (and Oscar was away, as he was much of this week), so Noah and B. were the designated bakers. They were both eager for turns with pouring in ingredients, stirring, and cracking the eggs (with assistance). They both got their own lump of dough to roll, and luckily there were two pumpkin cookie cutters, so there was no fighting about that.

Since it was a rainy day, Lucas and Maya came over for a play date. All the kids got to spread frosting on their own cookies, and I put faces on for them. Yummy!

On Thursday the kids each brought one of their vehicles to ride (or push) around the big block. We wanted to get a better look at some of the Halloween decorations on Pacific Avenue. It's just amazing, the detail that the people at some of these homes have put into their front lawn display. It's so fun! 

We love the giant Frankenstein at the corner of Pacific and Humberside. Noah's favourite, though, was this happy ghost hanging from the tree. 

I don't know why I am so Halloween-crazy this year. I think it's because the kids are old enough that we can really have fun with it. Stay tuned: I'm not done with Halloween blogs just yet. Monday is our daycare Halloween party, and we have Lucas, Maya and Marlaine joining us to celebrate!

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