As in previous years, I was given two little pumpkins by daily grocer, and we invited a kid or two over to participate in the annual ritual. The first year, we invited our neighbor, Oscar. He seemed more interested in Nora's toys than with the pumpkin carving, so the next two years, 2011 and 2012, we invited a friend from three floors down, Carmen. Oscar has a three-year-old sister, Gabriela, now, and Nora has a best friend from school, Claudia, so we decided to invite all of them this year, including Claudia's infant sister, Mara. Seven children! We began as we always do, with some paper to sketch out some ideas. With kids from three to seven years old, we had a variety of drawing skills. There was a general consensus around Carmen's idea to have the top of the mouth be all sharp teeth, and they liked my suggestion of having two square teeth. "Like Sponge Bob!" they all shouted, upon seeing my sketch.
They did fairly well taking turns scooping out the pumpkin innards, especially considering that Nora, Claudia and Carmen are all incredibly bossy. Oscar, again, got bored very early on and went off to find noisemaking toys.
Carmen and Nora are pumpkin cleaning veterans.
It was Gabriela's first time.
She definitely enjoyed it more than her brother, Oscar.
Then it was time for the kids to go running off to play with toys, while I got busy with my knife craft.
The babies did what babies do. I love the symmetry of this photo.
Keeping seven kids under control was easier than I'd feared. In herds, they're pretty docile, accepting rules passed down to them, e.g. "No, you may not go upstairs to [totally wreck] Nora's room." Only once did we get a messenger rush into where the adults were to tell us that "Nora fell down and is crying!" but a hug was all that was needed to cure her.
I'm already looking forward to next year!