Sunday, January 29, 2012

The Pumpkin Who Lived

You may remember me telling you about our two pumpkins that we grew in our garden and harvested back in September. But then again, you may have more important things in your life to remember like ATM pin numbers, passwords to your Facebook account, and your wedding anniversary, and the status of my garden is probably pretty low on your totem pole of memory. In which I will remind you- we grew two beautiful pumpkins last fall.

As a whole, our first garden was a pretty good success, with enough zucchini, squash, and tomatoes to stock an entire farmer's market for a month, but then again we did pick the easiest possible plants to grow and had a really great plot with a lot of sun. We can't take too much credit... but the pumpkins, we are proud of. We have several gardening friends, many of which with a much more earthy green thumb than we possess, however none were able to produce pumpkins this year. I don't know if it was an off year for the pumpkin or if we just picked the little lucky starter off the shelf, but our pumpkins grew fast and large. By the time we went back to NC for the wedding, we were able to cut two perfectly shaped 8lb pumpkins from the vine. Ross tried to convince me to make something with them, or at least carve them for Halloween, but for some reason, I couldn't bear the thought of cutting up the two most beautiful pumpkins I had ever grown (or the only pumpkins I had ever grown).

For two months our lovely pumpkins moved in various placed around the house. Pumpkins on the kitchen table. Pumpkins on the antique chest. Pumpkins by the TV. Pumpkins next to the couch. Our beloved pumpkins were the stars of the living room and the topic of conversation for all of our guests. "Did YOU REALLY grow these?!" Everyone was as amazed as I was.

On Halloween night we finally banished one of the pumpkins to the front porch. I was hoping parents would see how pretty our pumpkin was and think "wow, they have such a lovely pumpkin, I will take my kids Trick-or-Treating there!" Alas, not a single custom-wearing child graced us with their presence on Halloween night. But I don't blame our pumpkin for that.

As Halloween came and went, and Thanksgiving too, our pumpkins still flourished... one on the front porch and one in the house. Christmas came, and we got a tree and decorated the house in garland. The pumpkins remained. I considered adding silver glitter to them to make them feel appropriate for the new festive season, but in the end decided against it. While other people had wreaths, lights, and blow-up snow globes on their front lawns, we had a pumpkin.

It was not until we took down our tree (2 weeks after Christmas) that the outside pumpkin took a turn for the worse... the neighborhood slugs finally found it, and we added it to the compost pile, to hopefully go towards creating a new pumpkin next year.

But... our indoor pumpkin still lives. I don't know if we have the perfect inside temperature or if it has some kind of hybrid mega-genes that makes it immortal, but our pumpkin is still as bright, fresh, and orange as it was the day it came from the vine.

So, I need your help. What do I do with it? Let it live in my house, season after season, and decorate it according to each passing holiday? Find some obscure recipe and hope it's insides aren't toxic? Or simply, just let it be The Pumpkin Who Lived. (If you read and/or watch Harry Potter, I apologize for the corny reference. If you have no idea what I am talking about... then stop reading my stupid rants and go read Harry Potter.)

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