Family Traditions – The Halloween Edition!

| October 28, 2013 | 13 Comments


Most families who participate in Halloween decide to carve pumpkins and showcase them on October 31st. My husband takes it to the next level – simple jack-o-lantern faces won’t do for him.  Around 2007, he brought up the idea of using stencils (you can find them online or create your own) to do our pumpkins.

How it works: Wash and dry your hollowed-out pumpkin. You need to print the stencils in a size appropriate to your pumpkin (this might take some trial and error). You tape the stencil to your pumpkin and then use a tool to poke holes in all the lines of your stencil (a reverse connect-the-dots).  You can then take off the stencil and rub flour or baby powder onto your pumpkin to highlight the holes you’ve created.  From here, you start carving!  My husband and I have found that traditional pumpkin carving tools that you can buy at the stores are typically inefficient. We’ve used small carving saws and even electric knives for the bigger pieces.

My husband is a creative “project person”, so it didn’t surprise me that he wanted to try something a bit more elaborate.  We’ve been pumpkin carving enthusiasts ever since – my husband starts asking weeks before Halloween when we are going to start our pumpkins. My daughter is still too young to participate, but her time will come!

We have a lot of fun with this family tradition and the friendly competition that ensues as we get feedback from friends and neighbours about which pumpkin they like best.

What do you look forward to most about Halloween?  Any special traditions in your home?

2007 - When it all began...

2007 – When it all began… (Photo by I_Tell_Stories)


2011 - a little one on the way...

2011 – a little one on the way… (Photo by I_Tell_Stories)


2012 - Having a little baby of almost a year didn't slow us down...

2012 – Having a little baby of almost a year didn’t slow us down… (Photo by I_Tell_Stories

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Category: Crafts, Halloween-crafts, Ottawa

About the Author ()

Samantha lives in Stittsville with her husband, Jon, and their daughter, Mary. Samantha works full-time for the federal government and also enjoys writing part-time, including as a writer for Ottawa Parenting Times Magazine. Feel free to check out her website – and follow her on Twitter @I_Tell_Stories

Comments (13)

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  1. Victoria Ess says:

    Those are neat pumpkins! We don’t have any traditions for Halloween, really, although we do try to have a pumpkin carving night every year.

  2. I Tell Stories says:

    Thanks Victoria! 🙂 I love pumpkin carving and decorating for Halloween.

  3. Elizabeth Matthiesen says:

    these are absolutely brilliant, I take my hat off to you and your husband, simply marvellous!

  4. Cheryl (@loucheryl) says:

    I just love Halloween and these pumpkins are AMAZING!!!

  5. kathy downey says:

    I am going to try this year

  6. Cheryl (@loucheryl) says:

    OMG, I just love the Frankenstein pumpkin!

  7. Nicole B says:

    I love halloween! I even dress the dog up! I used to match the dog and my oldest but now my older is very set on what he wants so the younger is now my target! Last year the dog and my younger son were bees! Cutest thing ever! This year I really need to step up my game for the pumpkins though. Those are awesome!

  8. Tracey says:

    What a great idea! You’re pumpkins are amazing. Thanks for sharing.

  9. Aimee Robison says:

    Those are some wickedly awesome pumpkins. I am going to attempt to try doing this for Halloween.

  10. kathy downey says:

    I just love Halloween and love decorating as for pumpkin carving I suck but these pumpkins are AMAZING!!!

  11. kathy downey says:

    These are the nicest ones I have seen

  12. kathy downey says:

    I will leave the amazing craving to you my were horrible…so bad i was ashame to take a

  13. Debbie White-Beattie says:

    I amazes me that there are creative people that can do this because I was lucky to do the triangle eyes and nose

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