Gord-Lore Pumpkin Decorating, Activities and Food –
From decorating and cooking to games and activities, create fall fun with this versatile water bottle
Fall in Ohio marks the return of seasonal favorites for many families, from apple orchards and corn mazes to hay walks and pumpkin patch fields. Dozens of local farms offer fresh produce, family entertainment, and all the pumpkins you can put on your porch.
This fall, expand the pumpkin fun at home with unique decorating ways, themed games and activities, and even some new recipes to try. Check out these ideas for all ages and enjoy your own pumpkin festival.
Traditional carved pumpkins will always be on trend, but try these unique ideas to inspire your budding artists.
Create a rainbow of colors – literally – by painting several solid colors of pumpkins and arranging them in rows in rainbow order. For older kids, try mixing and layering the paint to create an ombre effect. For fun designs, try organizing the duct tape into a pattern – spider web, funny face, etc. – paint the pumpkin any color you want, then peel off the tape to reveal the pattern.
Glue and tissue paper
Use paint glue, like Mod Podge, and different colors and shapes of tissue paper to create a colorful stained glass effect.
Marble Nail Polish
Create a colorful, marbled look using regular nail polish and water. Put a few drops of varnish in a bucket of water and shake to mix the colors. Dip the pumpkins (miniatures are easier for this technique) in water to transfer the color and create your pattern.
Use these broken pencils and create a colorful drop effect on your pumpkins. Remove the paper and break the pencils into small pieces. One at a time, place the pieces near the pumpkin stem and use a hair dryer (on low heat) to melt them. While the wax is melting, turn and tilt the pumpkin to control the path of the colored drops.
Especially for toddlers and preschoolers, there is no need for fancy decorating techniques. Gather an assortment of art supplies – stickers, glue, ribbons, colored threads, pom poms, pipe cleaners, lace, etc. – and let your children decorate their pumpkins as they wish.
Fall games and fun
Find a small, round pumpkin to use as a bowling ball and experiment with different objects like pins: toilet paper rolls, plastic bowling pins, figurines, or other toys. See who can knock down the most pins, then step back to create more difficult turns.
Enter the game using large scale hoops thrown around whole pumpkins, or small scale using smaller rings thrown around stems only. For fun at night, use glow stick bracelets or necklaces and play after dark.
Driving the nails
Stimulate your child’s fine motor skills with this activity. Older children can use a small hammer, toy hammer, or wooden mallet to insert nails across the entire surface of the pumpkin. For toddlers, gently insert the tips of a few dozen nails into the pumpkin yourself, then let them drive them all the way.
Use five small orange pumpkins and five small white (or painted) pumpkins, then draw a noughts and crosses game board on a large sheet of paper. Leave the game in a convenient location for use throughout the season, or host a family tournament with championship support.
Ooey, gooey, fragrant and colorful: pumpkins are the perfect sensory exploration for toddlers and preschoolers. Explore the five senses with your children: touch the stem, skin, seeds and pulp; see colors and shape; hear what it feels like to knock on a pumpkin before and after it’s carved; smell the pulp and seeds; and enjoy some pumpkin-based treats (see the following recipes for some ideas).
Spend family time in the kitchen preparing a delicious pumpkin-themed meal or treat. From sweet to savory, this seasonal fruit is surprisingly versatile. (Recipes courtesy of The Ohio Farm Bureau, ofbf.org)
Sausage Pumpkin soup
- 1/2 pound Italian sausage roll
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 2 1/2 cups of chicken broth
- 2 15-ounce cans of pumpkin puree
- 2 cups of milk
- 1 teaspoon of lemon juice
- Pinch of cinnamon
- a little nutmeg
- Salt and pepper
- Parsley for garnish
- Crumble and cook the sausage and onion in a large saucepan until the sausage is brown. Drain off any fat. Add the chicken broth and bring to a boil. In a separate saucepan, heat the milk by steaming; do not boil. Put aside.
- Stir the pumpkin into the sausage and broth. Cover and simmer over low heat for 15 to 20 minutes. Add the milk, lemon juice, nutmeg, cinnamon, salt and pepper. Simmer, uncovered, for five minutes, stirring often. Garnish with parsley.
- 4 cups of powdered sugar
- 2 8-ounce packages of cream cheese
- 1 30-ounce can pumpkin pie filling mix
- 2 teaspoons of cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon of ginger
In large bowl, combine sugar and cream cheese, beating until blended. Add the remaining ingredients. Keep refrigerated. Serve in a bowl or hollowed out pumpkin with gingerbread cookies or vanilla wafers. Makes seven cups.
- 1 can yellow cake mix (reserve 1 cup for garnish)
- 1 egg
- 1 stick of softened butter
- 1 large can of pumpkin puree
- 3 eggs
- 1 1/2 teaspoons of cinnamon
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 2/3 cup milk
- 1/4 cup white sugar
- 1 cup reserved cake mix
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 1/2 cup of sugar
- 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Combine bottom layer ingredients with a fork and spread into an ungreased 13 × 9 inch pan. Combine filling ingredients and pour over bottom layer. Combine filling ingredients and sprinkle over filling. Bake for 50-55 minutes.