Never Too Old for Halloween

betty-rubble-costumeI have always loved Halloween night. I still remember the thrill of getting dressed up and running around the neighborhood in the dark. There would be kids running everywhere, house to house, demanding candy. There was such excitement and fun in the air.

Then I got older and didn’t get to trick-or-treat anymore. To be honest, I did keep it up until I was 18. But then I finally had to accept my time was done.

But now: Enter the Child

My son is my ticket back into the socially acceptable practice of parading in the streets for free candy on All Hallows Eve. I have taken him trick-or-treating since he was 6 months old. This was the first year he was into it. Oh he didn’t care one bit about his costume, but he sure made a beeline for those candy baskets. He caught on fast and had no shame grabbing as much as he could stuff in his little toddler hands.

And I was lucky to have recently moved to a neighborhood that really celebrates things the way I remembered. Kids were running from house to house, everyone was out and dressed up, it was amazing. Plus there was the added bonus of the adults enjoying themselves as well and serving up adult beverages along the way. I had a never-ending wine glass, and got to trick-or-treat. It was Awesome!

So according to my calculations, I should get at least another 10 years of trick-or-treating out of this arrangement…lol

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My Best Roast Pumpkin Seed Recipe

I love saving the seeds after carving pumpkins and then roasting them. This year they turned out the best ever! I’ve been snacking on them all week. I’m ready to run out and get more pumpkins just so I can do it all over again and try different flavors!

I think the secret to their deliciousness was letting them soak in the spices overnight. I just rinsed off the pumpkin goo, and then added a hefty dash of garlic salt, a sprinkle of white pepper and a little bit of steak seasoning from Omaha Steaks. It was just something random I threw in there and it worked out really well. I covered the bowl with plastic wrap and then let them sit in the fridge overnight.

pumpkin seeds

The next day I took them out, mixed in 1 tsp of melted butter and spread them out on a foil lined pan. I set the oven to bake at 350 degrees, and put the pan on one of the upper shelves.

Roasting pumpkin seeds

I checked them after 30 min and they were cooked but not enough. I tried stirring them around and they kind of stuck to the foil and didn’t budge so I put them back in for another 10 min.

The next time I peeked in, I was greeted by the sight of perfectly roasted pumpkin seeds! They had toasted up a nice brown and looked really crispy. After letting them cool for a moment I was able to confirm, yes, they were crispy and delicious!

Perfectly roasted pumpkin seeds

If you have a favorite seed recipe, tip or seasoning mix, I’d love to hear about it. Our carved pumpkins already rotted in the Florida heat, so I’ll be getting some more pumpkins soon and I want to try out a few different flavor mixes.

It’s Halloween! Carve ALL the pumpkins!

One of my must-do Halloween activities is carving pumpkins. This year Vita For Home sent me their stainless steel Pumpkin Carving Tool Set to try out. I’m happy to say, I was impressed with the durable tools!

I started my pumpkin project by making a Pinterest board for ideas and tips. So thanks to Pinterest, I decided to paint my pumpkin black to make it look cooler during the day. I really like the contrast of the orange showing through where it’s cut.

The kit came with a nice metal scooper, small carving saw and wedged shaped etching tool. I needed to use a larger knife to cut around the stem and remove the top piece, then went to town with the scooper/scraper. The metal scoop worked way better than the spoon I usually use. I was able to scrape the sides really clean and smooth. It even had serrated corners for digging out chunks.

After the pumpkin was all cleaned up, I drew my design on with chalk. My son had a smaller pumpkin and I let him draw his face on with a sharpie so I could cut it out for him. He wasn’t into scooping out goo and too little for a knife, so it was a good way to get him involved a little. He enjoyed sitting in my lap while I was carving my design.

The carving saw worked really well. I will definitely be adding these tools to my carving collection. So many pumpkin kits come with those flimsy knives that bend unless you poke them in just right. This small saw was very sturdy. My only complaint is that I wanted more! More tools like a larger knife for big parts and a poker for making small holes. This is a great starter kit for basic carving, and you can always raid the kitchen and get creative with basic utensils.

I was really happy with our pumpkin family results:

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If you’d like to try out the set, you can get here: www.VitaPumpkin.com and save with this 20% OFF COUPON CODE: RR6J3XMB

And then when you finish your masterpiece, be sure to post on Instagram and tag @VitaForHome to enter the pumpkin carving contest with a chance to win a $200 Amazon gift card

Pumpkin Carving contest rules:

1. Must be a pumpkin (of course!)

2. All entries must either be published to Instagram with @VitaForHome tagged and hashtags:
– #VitaForHome
– #CelebrateWithVita
– #CarvingContest
OR the contestant can email their submissions to hello@vitaforhome.com
3. The winner will be announced on November 20th
4. The prize is a $200 Amazon Gift Card