(My kiddos are a little obsessed with this seasonal activity... as soon as they get the go-ahead every fall, It's The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown makes it in to our usual bed time story rotation, not to mention a few showings of the vintage cartoon itself.)
They take their jobs very seriously. Every line is intentional, and there's no doubt there's a vision with each design (I have to admit I was halfway expecting Audrey to try and talk Henry into "modeling" for her design, as she thinks that particular part of the Charlie Brown story is hilarious... I'm happy to report it didn't come up).
While we carve, we talk about the way the pumpkin seeds feel (don't throw the seeds at each other guys!), how they got in the pumpkin, why they smell the way they do (no, Henny, don't eat the pumpkin goo), how they were once grown simply to feed animals through the winter (no, Henny, Leeloo does not want a bite of your pumpkin), how people used to carve turnips instead of pumpkins, how candles were the only way to see in the dark for so long... you know, the good stuff.
Then, after dinner and sunset, we ceremoniously carry the pumpkins to the front porch, drop the tea lights inside, and light 'em up. Only then is the fullness of the artistry and the insight into these little minds realized, and oh, it's so magical.
Even if I do have to write about it chicken-pecking with my left hand while my right wrist recovers from carving duty... until next year!