Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Jack-O-Lanterns and Family

Laura smiled as she watched Jack with their trio of terror. All three of them were in various stages of their pumpkin carving. Enver was scooping the pumpkin seeds and filling out of his with his bare hands. Lynx was trying to choose which of the four pumpkins she chose, to carve into first. Little Avis was getting help from Jack with carving into her pumpkin.

"Enver, pumpkin guts on the newspaper please," Laura called out to her son. When she spotted that twinkle of trouble in his eye. The mother easily recognized that look, she had seen it many times in Jack's eyes when they were growing up together.

Her son pouted, before he dropped his pumpkin insides onto the newspaper. He gave a soft sigh, before he looked longingly at the big pumpkin.

"When can we carve the big one?" He asked as he looked at his mom.

Laura shook her head, "After we finish these pumpkins. The little ones we don't need to carve into. So, finish your pumpkins, and maybe help your sisters. Then, we'll get to the big one quicker."

At his mom's response, Enver dug more eagerly into his pumpkin. Laura made her way over to Lynx, she stood behind her daughter. "Do you need help, sweetheart?"

Lynx looked up at her mom with bright eyes. "Yeah, I can't figure out which one I want to use for my witch's hat jack-o-lantern," The eight year old had an artistic eye, always for detail. Laura had known that her wild cat, would have an artistic career.

Laura studied the pumpkins with a critical eye. She found one that worked, "What about this one?" she suggested to Lynx. As she pointed at the pumpkin that would work for Lynx.

Lynx looked at the pumpkin in question and smiled, as if she realized that it would work. "Oh, thanks mom," she said as she pulled said gourd towards her. Lynx picked up a black marker and began to draw her design onto the pumpkin.

Laura glanced at Enver to see that he had gotten the larger pieces out of his pumpkin. He was now using a spoon to get the finer details. She moved closer to Enver, and looked at him with soft eyes. It was hard to believe that her son was ten years old. It seemed like yesterday that he was a baby celebrating his first Halloween dressed as a candy corn.

She walked around to the other side of the table, and sat down across from him. She reached out for one of his pumpkins and cut into the top. Once, she had made a hole for him, she placed the lid back on Laura did that for the rest of his pumpkins. Enver smiled at his mom once he realized what she had done. She did the same for Lynx, Jack had done the same for Avis' pumpkins.

The family of five worked diligently on pumpkins for a few hours. Once all of the pumpkins minus one were carved, Jack and the children cleaned the dining room table. Laura had made hamburgers for dinner. Once dinner was done, the three children bounced in their seats and looked at their parents in excitement.

"Is it time?" Enver asked in anticipation.

Laura looked at Jack and met his eye. They shared a mischievous grin with each other. "Time for what, En?" Jack asked his son in return.

Enver, Lynx, and Avis looked at their parents in confusion. Avis' head was tilted to the side, as she answered her father's question, "Big pumpkin, Papa!"

"Yeah, the big pumpkin," Enver cried out after his sister.

Jack and Laura shared another look, "What big pumpkin?" she wondered aloud as she looked at the children.

Three faces of shock, indignation, and outrage were staring at their parents. They couldn't believe what they were hearing. How could their parents forget about the big pumpkin? It was huge,

At the look on their children's faces, Laura and Jack burst into peals of laughter. Jack was hooting as he looked at his wife. Laura was wiping tears from her eyes as she met Jack's gaze. As they tried to calm down their laughter, the children frowned and pouted.

"You're not funny," Lynx muttered as she frowned in disapproval at her parents.

"Oh, I wouldn't be so sure about that, Lynx. Your parents got into quite a bit of mischief and hijinx as children," a voice called out from behind the children.

Three heads snapped over their shoulders to look at the new arrivals. "Aunt Kat, Uncle Ronnie, Pop-Pop, Nana," were all shouted as three sets of legs scrambled out of their seats.

Laura glanced at Jack and smiled at her husband. She placed her hand on top of his as their children ran to hug their relatives. It was always an adventure when their family got together. Laura and Jack watched as the children talked excitedly about the pumpkin.

"Are you going to help us with the pumpkin?" Enver asked his uncle as he looked up at his blonde haired uncle.

"Yeah, but we're still waiting for a few more people," Ronnie hinted as he looked at his sister. "Hey, sis," he called as he looked at Laura.

Laura raised an eyebrow as she looked at her brother. "Hi, Ronnie," she replied as she reluctantly got up from her chair. She made her way over and hugged her baby brother.

Ronnie laughed and scooped his sister up and lifted her off the ground. Laura shrieked and laughed as she slapped her brother's back, to try and get him to put her. "Ronnie, you put me down this instant," Laura warned her brother in a stern voice.

Ronnie sighed but placed his sister back on the ground. "Party pooper," he mumbled as he wrapped his arm around her shoulder and pulled her into his side.

Jack laughed while Laura rolled her eyes. "I don't know Ronnie, you always were in more trouble than either Jack and Laura were," a voice called from behind Jack.

Jack turned in his seat and easily spotted his own siblings and parents. His children cried in delight and excitement as they spotted their Uncle David, Uncle Mike, Aunt Katie, and his own parents. He got up and hugged his parents, before he and his brothers began a little bit of rough housing, with Ronnie joining in on the fun.

"Boys, what have said about rough housing," three voices of Laura, Nana, and Grams each chastised the four grown men.

Instantly, all four let go of one another and straightened up. The women laughed, while Pop-Pop and Gramps shook their heads at their son's trouble. "Honestly, you would think that they were children again, with the way they act," Nana said as she shook her head.

"To be fair, mom, they were always trouble makers the four of them," Laura replied, Kat and Katie nodding in agreement.

The men all protested and shouted at Laura's statement. "You were just as much trouble, Laura, or have you forgotten?" David asked his sister-in-law with a raised eyebrow.

"Oh, I'll admit Jack and I had our fair share of mischief but the four of you together, were always a phone call from the principal or the sheriff. I know that I didn't go to jail during my bachelorette  party, nor did I ever end up in a cell in high school or ever for that matter," Laura pointed out with look of annoyance.

The four mens' cheeks were tinged a soft red color at being caught. They did have their fair share of shenanigans that had gotten them into trouble. And the incident with the bachelor party had been one of the worst and most regrettable ones.

"Yeah, let's not forget the phone calls," Kat said as she looked at her own husband with annoyance.

Ronnie winced, he had been so drunk when he had called Kat.

"I don't know, the mugshots looked pretty good, and we got to use them as Christmas cards," Katie said with a laugh as she looked at her three brothers and brother-in-law.

Another round of laughter took place. While, the three children were confused at the adult conversation going on. "Can we carve the big pumpkin now?" Lynx asked as she looked between her aunts, uncles, grandparents, and parents.

Laura laughed before she nodded. "Let's get started, everyone's here," she agreed as she herded the children back to their seats.

Jack, Ronnie, David, and Mike lifted the big pumpkin up onto the table. While, the women gathered various knives, spoons, pens, and newspapers. They worked together and in a little over two hours, they had a large empty pumpkin that was a scene of a pumpkin patch. Lots of pictures had been taken, the one that everyone truly enjoyed was the one with Avis sitting in side looking up. Enver and Lynx were sitting next to the pumpkin on either side.

The large pumpkin and all of the other pumpkins were placed outside, some on the front porch and the rest in the backyard. The candles were lit and the family enjoyed the jack-o-lanterns. Before, they made their way inside to watch a Halloween movie, that was kid appropriate much to Mike and Ronnie's dismay.

-xxx-

I wandered back into the Laura verse today. And this came out a lot different than I thought that it would. But I still love it.

-ADF

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