Carving pumpkins was on our list to do for the fall holidays.
The girls had a great time carving, and did most of the work themselves except for gutting the pumpkins – that was a bit too icky for them, so that job fell to me.
They turned out great – unfortunately, we left them on the front porch a bit too long. For some unexplained reason, the pumpkin on the right started decaying much more rapidly than the one on the left.
And then we left them a little longer.
The left one was showing obvious signs of decay – the right one finally just gave up and collapsed. An awful smell had begun emanating from the one on the right, so I decided it was high time that I threw them away.
But wait – I asked myself, “What kind of homeschool mom just chunks a rotten pumpkin with extremely cool hairy stuff growing all over it?”
Not this homeschool mom. :) So, out comes the microscope.
Bravely, I gathered the necessary supplies to harvest part of the pumpkin. I was a tad wary, but the harvesting wasn’t as gross as I suspected it would be. At least, my gag reflex was never triggered.
Next was making a slide for the microscope. Left to right on the slide: completely hairy moldy stuff, slightly hair moldy stuff with orange pumpkin still visible, rotting orange pumpkin, and a papery piece of the pumpkin skin that was peeling off.
Then the fun began - note the held noses.
Reactions? “Cool!” on most of the specimens; “Gross!” on the hairy moldy specimen, but it was still expressed with a smile, plus they took a second (and third) look.
Even daddy wanted in on the fun.
And now, pumpkins, you have served us well – but we must bid you a fond farewell. Thanks for feeding (so to speak!) my girls’ science fascination!