Call 225.925.TAX8

Watching Over What Counts – Your Trusted Tax Partner

We Carve Out Deductions & Credits – We’ll leave the Jack-o’-lantern to You

By Shanta on October 23, 2014 in Uncategorized
Rest assure that carving out the perfect deductions & credits is our specialty at Eagle Eye Tax Solutions.  However, pumpkin carving can be a bit challenging.   With Halloween approaching, check out a few tips to help you produce the perfect jack-o’-lantern.
  • Good carving starts with the right pumpkin. Choose a large pumpkin. The larger the pumpkin, the easier it is to carve. Avoid any pumpkins with bruises or moldy stems as they will spoil much faster. Pumpkins with a lighter color tend to be softer and easier to carve.
  • Cut out the lid on an angle, not straight up and down When cutting out the top, place the knife at a 45 degree angle so that the lid will have a place to rest when you replace it. If you cut straight down, the lid will fall through.
  • Scoop out the pulp.When cleaning the pumpkin, save the seeds. Toasted pumpkin seeds make a healthy as well as tasty snack. Use a large, heavy metal serving spoon or ice cream scoop to scrape the insides. If you will be lighting the pumpkin, the back wall should be scraped as smooth as possible since this is where the light will be reflected. A 1-inch thickness of the pumpkin wall is optimum.
  • Print out or draw the pattern on a piece of paper. Tape the template onto the pumpkin and use a marker to trace the carving lines. Cutting slits in the paper will help it to conform to the round surface. As an alternative, you can tape the outline to the pumpkin and use a nail or large pushpin to score the carving lines onto the pumpkin. Connect the dots as you carve.
  • Cut the pumpkin outline. Use small sharp scissors or a razor knife to cut out the areas you will be carving into the pumpkin. A long serrated knife or a pumpkin-carving knife with teeth will be necessary to cut through the thick flesh. Use a sawing motion and take your time cutting along the outside edge of the marker lines so there is no marker residue.
  • Consider cutting off the bottom of the pumpkin, as well as the top. The pumpkin will be more stable and also easier to carve. If you plan on using a candle to light your jack-o’-lantern, be sure the opening in the bottom is large enough to fit over the candle. Place the candle on a fire-proof base large enough to accommodate the pumpkin. You can then easily lift off the jack-o’-lantern to light the candle.
  • If you will be lighting your jack-o’-lantern with a candle, be sure to leave the lid off to avoid any fire hazard. Use a votive candle in a glass holder or tea lights in a metal case. If you want to leave the lid on, carve a hole in the unseen back side of the pumpkin to act as a chimney. Never leave a candle-lit jack-o’-lantern unattended for any length of time.
  • A small battery-operated flameless candle or Christmas lights wrapped around a jar is a safer choice than traditional candles for lighting your jack-o’-lantern.
  • Sprinkle a little cinnamon inside the lid. Sprinkle the bottom side of the pumpkin lid with ground cinnamon or nutmeg, and/or cloves to let your jack-o’-lantern do double duty as an air freshener.
  • Keep your pumpkin fresh. Place the jack-o’-lantern in a plastic bag and refrigerate when not in use.

About the Author

ShantaView all posts by Shanta