Fun Ways to Create a Spooky Reusable Jack-O-Lantern!
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Fun Ways to Create a Spooky Reusable Jack-O-Lantern!

Posted on Monday, October 22nd, 2012 at 9:36 am
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Fun alternatives to carving a jack-o-lantern this Halloween so it can be used for baking and cooking after the holidayWith Halloween right around the corner, adults and children alike are making plans to take part in a popular, well-loved tradition; pumpkin carving. Most of us will buy a pumpkin, carve a jack-o-lantern, enjoy it for a few days, and then throw it out when it rots. Instead of literally throwing your money away, why not try our alternatives to pumpkin carving to make your dollar stretch further. It will also give you an excuse to enjoy your favorite seasonal pumpkin recipes!

No-Carve Pumpkin Decorating Ideas

If you hope to reuse your pumpkin after Halloween, the best way is to avoid carving it. The problem is that after just a few short days, the exposed pumpkin flesh begins to rot, and you definitely don’t want to eat that. Instead, try cutting out fun facial expressions or designs from felt. You can then use small pins to add the felt to the front of the pumpkin. This is also fun because it allows you to change your pumpkin from day to day. Maybe your child will enjoy a funny expression one day, but will want a scary one on Halloween night.

You can also use non-toxic paint or markers to decorate the outside. When Halloween is over, you can simply wash away the design and begin cooking with your pumpkin. If eating the pumpkin flesh after it’s been decorated makes you nervous, simply shave off that part of the flesh and use the rest.

If you plan to carve your pumpkin the old-fashioned way, make sure you use as much of the pumpkin as possible. After you’ve dug the seeds and guts out of the middle of the pumpkin, you can use the contents in your cooking. Roast the pumpkin seeds and add salt to make a super healthy snack. The guts can be added to your favorite pumpkin baking recipes. You can also boil the guts in water, remove them, and add the pumpkin flavored water to soups or ciders. Use the carved out chunks of pumpkin in cooking or baking to stretch your buck a bit further!

Aside from making sure your jack-o-lantern isn’t a waste, another benefit of these non-carving alternatives is that your Halloween pumpkin can last longer. You and your family can enjoy your silly or spooky pumpkins for longer than just the week of Halloween.

Pumpkin is naturally nutritious and packed with tons of essential vitamins and nutrients. It’s also a great source of protein, fiber and fatty acids – Just another reason to cook with your pumpkin this fall!

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Good Tip: Saving money is important – especially if you have a lot of expenses like bills to pay, loans to pay off, and all the other things that drain your bank account. Figuring out a way to save money can feel tedious to some, and like a punishment to others. U.S. News suggests that you try one of these money saving challenges. The “No Eating Out for a Month” Challenge This one is self-explanatory. The goal is to avoid eating out for an entire month. This might be super easy for people who enjoy making meals at home. People who really enjoy dining out, or ordering food to be sent to their home, may struggle with this one. It’s worth a try because spending money on take-out is more expensive than buying groceries. The Pantry Challenge This one is a variation of the “No Eating Out for a Month” challenge. The goal is to use up all of your groceries before you buy more. It forces you to try and remember why you bought a food or beverage that you don’t know what to do with, and gives you the opportunity to find a way to use it. The one exemption to this challenge is the foods that have expired. Don’t eat them! Throw them in the trash. The “No Spend” Challenge Make a goal to avoid spending money during an entire weekend. The only exemption in this challenge is that you are allowed to pay bills. This challenge is interesting because it requires creativity. You must be creative and find workarounds for problems that you would typically solve by spending money. You may have a different outlook on spending after finishing this challenge.