Pumpkin mania

The brave woman stood at the temporary sink, surrounded by children holding small pumpkins to rinse off and take home. Was she a teacher? A parent? A courageous volunteer taking part in an elementary school field trip to a pumpkin patch?

I didn’t stop to ask but drove carefully past the cluster of children and their pumpkins. I had come to the pumpkin patch because of nostalgia.

Driving through rural Virginia a few weekends ago, my husband and I passed several fields dotted with pumpkins. Those fields made me long for a proper pumpkin patch, and my bare porch begged for a few pumpkins. So I took my own field trip yesterday, a solo visit to a pumpkin “farm,” really a patch where someone else had already done the picking.

PumpkinFarm2015_1FT

Pumpkins, pumpkins everywhere

PumpkinFarm2015_3FT

Cinderella’s stagecoach in the background?

I wandered around, taking pictures, enjoying the laughter of parents and children as they picked out their perfect pumpkins. I thought of Linus falling asleep in the pumpkin patch, waiting and hoping for the Great Pumpkin’s arrival. I kept my eyes open for the best pumpkins.

PumpkinFarm2015_2FT

Someone had fun decorating old farm equipment for the season.

PumpkinFarm2015_4FT

A wheelbarrow-full assortment of pumpkins and gourds

Even though the pumpkins had not grown right here, the working farm couldn’t have been too far away. There were a few goats resting in a pen, and several chickens scrambled around the pumpkin yard, frazzled by gleeful children yelling, “Mooooom! I want to catch the chicken! Chick! En! Catch the chick-en!”

PumpkinFarm2015_5FT

Can you spot the chicken in this picture?

I guess by this point in pumpkin season, the chickens are ready for Halloween to come and go. They’ve also either gotten in some good sprint training or have found their own favorite hidey holes at the pumpkin patch.

Have you been to the pumpkin patch, farmers’ market or local grocery store to stock up on pumpkins? If not, there’s still time. The pumpkins (and the wagons) are waiting.

PumpkinFarm2015_6FT

Our porch is no longer bare. We’re almost ready for trick-or-treaters (there’s candy still to buy).

This year will be a very different sort of Halloween for us. We’ve moved from a neighborhood with 60+ school-age children to one that has maybe four or five who are still the right age to trick-or-treat. At least there will be some pumpkin cheer on our porch to let the neighborhood kids know to stop by our house for treats. And the adults have already gotten into the Halloween spirit, leaving secret gifts at each others’ doors and putting up signs to say we have been “boo’d.”

PumpkinedPorch2015FT

A happy front porch, graced with pumpkins and a spattering of rain

We’ll keep our pumpkins as Thanksgiving decorations, but I always feel a bit odd about not carving a jack-o-lantern. My dad always carved one for us growing up, and maybe that’s part of the nostalgia that won’t let me skip buying pumpkins each Halloween.

How about you? Do you carve jack-o-lanterns—either simple or elaborate? Or do you keep your pumpkins whole to double as Thanksgiving decorations? What other ways do you, your family and your neighbors like to celebrate Halloween? However you celebrate, let me wish you and yours a very happy Halloween!

2 thoughts on “Pumpkin mania

  1. Pingback: Seasons and surprises | The Flourishing Tree

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s