I really can’t see the enjoyment of celebrating Halloween but I am curious about why we carve Pumpkins. After doing some online research it seems that the reason we carve spooky faces into pumpkins and light the inside using a candle is a tradition that comes from an Irish story. There was an Irish farmer named Jack, who managed to trap the Devil using a cross. For the Devil to be released he had to promise Jack that he would not take his soul to hell. The problem that Jack then faced was that once his time had come, his life had been too sinful for him to enter Heaven but due to his deal with the Devil he couldn’t enter Hell either. This meant that Jack the farmer had no place to go. He asked how he would find a resting place without any light. He was given an ember that could never burn out. Jack then carved one of his turnips and put the ember inside, and would use this to lead him to find his final resting place. Because of this story, Pumpkins that were carved and lit were originally named Jack O’ Lanterns. This story was taken to America by Irish immigrants, who found pumpkins growing in abundance in North America and started carving these instead of turnips.
My partner is quite creative and enjoys the tradition of carving pumpkins, this is the only part of Halloween I will participate in, mainly as I can make delicious recipes with the pumpkin flesh. This year he wanted to do one spooky and one woodland themed. We let our son pick the Pumpkins from our lovely local green grocers, he picked one for himself, one for my partner and I and a small squash for his 7 month old baby sister.
Here are the carved Pumpkins, carved by my talented fiancé.