I spent last night with lovely people carving pumpkins and drinking cacao. Now, maybe you have carved a pumpkin before and don’t exactly relish all that slimy scraping and cutting out faces………but seriously if you’ve carved pumpkins with me, you will have this amazing ritual transformed for life.

Those that know me, know I use creativity to maintain my own emotional well being and over the years I have just chanced upon a few processes that totally reach the spots other creative acts can’t reach. In 2005 I bought a magazine with an article about carving pumpkins with lino cutters. I noticed one photo had writing on a carving and my passion for poetry and pumpkins began. Every year I begin the same ritual. I sit at my kitchen table (a table that belonged to my great, great grandparents), I buy a special peace candle which I set on the table, I put on music and I connect to all the people I have loved and lost and I carve what I want to say to myself for the year onto my pumpkin.

This amazing ritual has extended over the years in a strange way to also nurturing the people I love around me by sharing the process with them by sharing this space. I have learnt over the years to make an amazing roast pumpkin soup with sesame oil and serve this simple meal of soup and bread while we all carve. I’ve noticed how calm the children are over the years as we all share our skills. How my friends over the years have started the ritual saying judgemental things about their creativity and ending up happy with their pumpkin – a thing of great beauty. We all feel emotionally and physically nourished and peaceful. 

Pumpkins by Bay Deane, Howard and Clare Vause


















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