Friday, November 3, 2017

1,000 Jack-O'-Lanterns and Other Halloween News

This year's Halloween had some good and bad moments.

On the good side, Chicago Botanic Garden had a special Halloween event last weekend.

Using scalpels, knives, gouges, and power tools, artists had carved over 1,000 pumpkins including many very large ones that weighed more than 150 pounds.

There were many different themed jack o'lanterns.

I liked the spooky ones the best.

My wife had told Kai that he could wear his Halloween costume to the event. But when we got there, we saw that no one else was in costume so Kai got a little self-conscious. He refused to wear his mask, and when we took the following picture he said, "Mom, you can wear the mask!"

It was a fun evening as we enjoyed seeing all the different designs.

Kai took many pictures with his phone and had a great time.

He later made a video using all of the pictures he took. You'll get a much better idea of all the different themes such as musicians, Chicago sports, Halloween classics, Day of the Dead, and others.

Halloween itself wasn't a complete success, though.

The days of Kai wearing cute costumes has passed and he now prefers scary ones. This year his costume was of the grim reaper, and the mask was particularly frightful as you can make simulated blood flow through. My sister and brother-in-law were in town so they accompanied Kai as he went around the neighborhood for trick-or-treating. Kai went up to younger children and deliberately frightened them, even after my sister told him not to do it anymore. It was very disappointing to hear.

Later, my wife and I expressed our disapproval for his actions, Kai was very upset the whole evening. One of the challenges with him is that too often he doesn't accept help or listen to what others (staff at school, relatives) are telling him in the moment, and then later he feels frustration with himself for not being able to stop himself from doing something that he shouldn't have done. We remind him all the time that he needs to accept help before things go too far; not sure how to make him do that in the moment.


  1. Sit and/or move with the vulnerability?

  2. That was a nice presentation from Kai. Carving has been taken to the level of an art form. However, my favorite ones are the ones carved by young children with nothing but a knife.

    It is too bad Kai felt bad trying to have fun. I am sure it was a lesson learned.

    1. I, too, like the authenticity and sincerity in a simple carving by kids.

      Kai is enjoying creating videos and putting them on YouTube. For this project, he wanted to make sure he had taken pictures of all of his favorite jack o'lanterns.

  3. Sounds like it was more good than bad, so that is good! Hopefully Kai will continue to learn and mature and be able to stop before getting out of hand. The pumpkin carving was great, too! Very fun!

    1. Kai seems to be getting more mature in some ways... just need to be able to listen better.

      We had fun seeing all of the different jack o'lanterns!


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