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Carving the Perfect Pumpkin

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					Title:
Carving the Perfect Pumpkin

Word Count:
505

Summary:
One of the most time honored Halloween traditions is the carving of the
pumpkin to place on the front porch. Many families make it a part of
their fall traditions to drive out to the local pumpkin patch, pick out
the perfect pumpkins, and then come home to carve creepy or funny faces
into all of them.


Keywords:
Halloween Costumes, Halloween costume, Costumes


Article Body:
One of the most time honored Halloween traditions is the carving of the
pumpkin to place on the front porch. Many families make it a part of
their fall traditions to drive out to the local pumpkin patch, pick out
the perfect pumpkins, and then come home to carve creepy or funny faces
into all of them.

Creating your own pumpkin masterpiece is easy. You can come up with your
own designs, or you can look online for different templates if you want
something truly different and spooky. However, even the perfect design
will flop if you don't follow good pumpkin carving techniques. Here are
some tips to help you create a work of art.

Find the right pumpkin

Of course, the perfect jack-o-lantern starts with the perfect pumpkin.
Find one that is large enough and the proper shape to hold your design
ideas. You will also want to examine the pumpkin for any bruising or
defects that could cause it to deteriorate faster once you have taken it
home.

Make sure the pumpkin is cleaned out

The start of any great jack-o-lantern begins with scooping out all of the
seeds and mess that is inside. You should also take it a step further,
however. Once the seeds have been removed, continue to scrape the inside
until you have about a quarter of an inch of rind left. A thinner pumpkin
is easier to carve – especially if you are hoping to successfully do fine
detailing in your carving. Thin walls will also help your pumpkin keep
longer after it is carved. They may make it more fragile, however, so use
caution when moving your creation.

Pumpkins like it cool

From the time you bring your pumpkin home from the patch until it is time
to throw it out you will want to keep it in a cool, dark area. If it is
still warm where you live in October, store your pumpkin inside during
the daytime. Always avoid sunlight during the day. If your pumpkin gets
warm, it will start to rot quickly. Placing your pumpkin on the porch
only in the evenings and taking it inside during the day time can help it
to last longer.

Remember to moisturize

Not you – the pumpkin! Rubbing petroleum   jelly on the cut surfaces of the
pumpkin will help keep your pumpkin from   drying out as quickly, which
will cause it to lose its shape. Only do   the cut edges, not the inside,
especially if you plan on using a candle   as it is a fire hazard.

Allow your pumpkin to breathe

When carving your pumpkin, place a small notch or hole in the lid. That
way, when you place the candle inside, the smoke and heat have a way to
escape. Otherwise, the pumpkin may start to cook, which will cause your
jack-o-lantern to deteriorate more quickly.

Once you have found the perfect pumpkin to create your jack-o-lantern
masterpiece, following these simple steps will help keep your creation
looking spooky for several days' worth of Halloween fun.

				
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posted:3/13/2010
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Mike Ward Mike Ward Senior Project Manager http://thezumbavideos.com/
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