Confession time - I do not like dressing up in costumes and although I did dress up as a child and throughout university for parties, it was never really my favourite thing about the holiday. I never thought I had a good idea of what to be, and then I would usually forget until it was too late to find a good costume anyway.
When we had kids I knew that family costumes would not be our thing (although I love seeing what other people have come up). Instead what I knew I could be good at was carving pumpkins so that is where I have put my energies since E was little. It can take awhile to do a good pumpkin but I'm happy to do it. We have had a few different ideas over the years so here is what we have done:
2012 - E had just turned one. He helped me out with the scooping.
2013 - This year we got a bit more ambitious and I did a Thomas the Tank Engine design and another ghost stencil.
2014 - Mockingjay
2015 - a couple of stencils from our book
2016 - I had E design the pumpkins he wanted to do on paper and then I did my best to transfer them to the pumpkin.
2017 - Same idea.
This one had carvings all around it, E said the intention was for people to say "Wow, look at that pumpkin" and it worked, lots of trick-or-treaters said they liked it.
And then two spooky faces.
2018 - We got more creative and picked up some white pumpkins to do Day of the Dead inspired designs along with our regular orange ones.
2019 - E was Harry Potter and Q was Hulk so we did pumpkins to match their costumes. And I tried a white owl pumpkin that I had seen on Pinterest.
See the little pumpkin inside
I never buy pumpkins until a couple of days before Halloween since they tend to go bad or get eaten by squirrels if we get them too early. Although the grocery stores are often sold out before then I have always had luck at our local produce market, Carload. I make sure the pumpkins are room temperature so scooping out the insides is more pleasant. We have a couple of different carving sets.