Star Light, Star Bright
Design a pumpkin that glows like a starry, starry night!
- Large pumpkin:Ask your little Linus to select his own Great Pumpkin.
- Hammer and large nail:If I had a hammer…
- Navy blue acrylic paint and paint brush
- Metallic paper or aluminum foil:If you can find it, metallic contact paper is even better!
- Moon- and star-shaped stencils or cookie cutters:CookieCutter.com has great cookie cutters for under a buck each.
- Spray adhesive or glue:Find spray adhesive at your local craft store or online at JoAnn.
- Small star-shaped stickers:Use stickers like the ones you got in grade school for scoring big on a geography test. Teachers call these "incentive stickers." (Buy a few extra packs and see if you can motivate your child to clean his room! Hey, it worked on you, right?)
- Sharp knife
- Flashlight or pumpkin light
- Two spoons:one to scoop the seeds and pulp out of the pumpkin; one to scoop out the contents of a pint of Häagen-Dazs into your mouth. (Hey, it's the beginning of the holiday season–celebrate! You won't have to be "bikini ready" for 8 months!)
- Visit your local pumpkin patch and invite your child to hunt for the perfect pumpkin!
- When you get it home, saw the top off of the pumpkin.
- Have your kid scoop the pulp and seeds out of it. Lovely having someone else do the dirty work, huh? (Remember to save the seeds for a tasty snack! See the "Do Note" section for a quick recipe.)
- Rinse and dry the outside of the pumpkin.
- Have your child paint the pumpkin navy blue with the acrylic paint.
- While you're waiting for the paint to dry, help your child trace star and moon shapes onto the paper or aluminum foil using the cookie cutters and/or stencils.
- Help him cut out the moons and stars.
- When the pumpkin is dry, use the spray adhesive or glue to stick the shapes onto the pumpkin to create a starry night design! Add the star stickers to create the illusion of depth (from a galaxy far, far away).
- Help your kid poke little holes along the outside of the tracings by hammering little nail holes through the skin. The holes should be about half an inch apart. The holes will create twinkling stars when the pumpkin is illuminated.
- Finally, place a flashlight inside the hollow pumpkin and place it on your stoop or in your window for all to see! For a safe, fun alternative, check out Pumpkin Lights for a variety of pumpkin illumination options.
- Need an after-pumpkin-carving snack? Mix cleaned pumpkin seeds with a little melted butter, sprinkle with salt and bake at 300° F for about 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.