If you pretend like you’re their grandma, you’ll LOVE this.

On Sunday we – meaning me, Jared, Devin and Emma – set out for a day of fall festivities at a local pumpkin patch.  The temperatures  here in Florida were actually fall like, and it was the first family outing we would all be on together since before Hell Month.  I grabbed two camers to properly record what was sure to be a Rockwellian day.

Do you  have any idea how hard it is to find a pumpkin patch in Florida?

Let me give you a hint: almost as hard as it is to find a Christmas tree farm.

Back in Iowa, we would go to a pumpkin patch and enjoy hay rides and face painting and sitting on hay bails.  But oh, no.  Here in the Sunshine State, we drove around town for 20 minutes before ending up in a church parking lot that was pretending to be a pumpkin patch.


The kids didn’t seem to notice the difference.



They made their way through rows and rows of pumpkins…



before picking out the perfect ones.



Oh, Norman…


…you would have been proud.


OK, I admit it. That picture has nothing to do with this story. But I think it’s cool.

ANYway, so the kids picked out the perfect pumpkins, including one the size of all four of our heads put together. Jared made his way up to the cashier tent, and noticed that we were about to spend roughly $50 on pumpkins.

Um, no.

We explained to the kids that we were going to get more cash and maybe look around at some other southern pumpkin patches.


Winn Dixie is just as much a pumpkin patch as the parking lot of the First United Church Of Protestants.

Plus, we needed dish soap.


Oh, come on. That’s cute.

Honestly?  The kids didn’t mind.  They still got to pick their pumpkins from a bin filled with other pumpkins, and they left a store with something that was bought for them.  They were thrilled.  This is how easy it is to please children when you normally suck as a parent.

We hauled our three little pumpkins home (one for each kid, and one for Hilly, because I’m a good neighbor) and got down to the business of pumpkin carving.


Yes, we let the children play with knives. Especially the four year old. You should see what she can do with a butcher knife and a block of ice.

Not really.


We have 10% of 6 pumpkin carving kits scattered across various kitchen drawers and cupboards. This is interesting to no one, I know. But it explains why the kids were carving their own pumpkins.


One of these children is not mine. But they are all here so damn often, I’m starting to forget which one I didn’t give birth to. Seriously. I took all three of them grocery shopping the other day. Seriously. I can’t imagine why any kid would go grocery shopping if they didn’t have to. But, well, Matthew gets a pass from me. (Except for when he misbehaves in the grocery store. Then he gets in trouble just the same as the two I pushed out in a delivery room.)

ANYway… so the two of us watched while the three of them scooped out goop.


Until one of us got suckered into helping.


I bet Norman Rockwell did not have to scoop goop.

Once the goop was scooped, Emma got to work on the carving.


Devin sat down to plan.


Because that’s… well… that’s Devin.

Once a proper plan was agreed upon, Devin began his own carving.


Blah blah blah yada yada yada.


The end.

(Unless you actually are their grandma, and then you probably want to see the entire set on FlickR.)

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