To pumpkid or not to pumpkid – that is the question!

Baby in a carved pumpkin

Tis the season to carve out a pumpkin, stick your kid in it and take the cutest photo on earth, right? Well let me take a few minutes to share my experience behind the scenes of taking this adorable, totally Instagram-worthy, should-go-viral, baby-Tristan-in-a-pumpkin photo.

Baby T arrived in July of 2013. I went back to work in October 2013 and baby T started daycare. One afternoon at work while pumping in the conference room, I was scrolling through Pinterest and found- you guessed it- a photo of a baby in a pumpkin. Repinned, saved, on it. Baby T was the perfect age for this Pinterest project with a little round pumpkin face to boot … what could go wrong?

Operation Pumpkin Baby

We bought pumpkins that week and my husband was working late one Friday night when I decided to stage my epic pumpkin-baby photo shoot. I carved it out, cut the leg holes, and popped baby T in it for a photo. He loved every minute of it! He was giggling, I was giggling, we were snapping pics, life was great! That was, until I tried to take him out and he was stuck. Cue the stopping of my heart and sheer panic. I couldn’t believe it – somehow he slipped right in this thing, how could I possibly not be able to get him out? I gently tried pulling him out a couple times but no go.

Baby in carved pumpkin

My brain popped into Emergency Mom Mode, which I didn’t even know existed at this point in mommyhood. I thought … there is literally a hospital next door to my apartment – should I run him over in the pumpkin and have them break him out of it? What will the doctors think? Can you go to jail for getting a baby stuck in a pumpkin? At this moment, I started to see white – another thing I didn’t know actually existed. T is still giggling but I am sweating and panting and thinking of all possible options her … I can’t tip him upside down and pour him out, I can’t cut him out, I’m not strong enough to actually break the pumpkin with my bare hands.  So now we’re on the floor, womano e pumpkin. I am kneeling with Pumpkin Baby’s feet on my knees so I can push his feet up with my knees as I use my two shaking hands to hoist his torso out of the top. And suddenly, my 4 month old saved the day as he happened to bend his knees at just the right angle and I was able to successfully pull his chubby little butt right out of that G*DD*MN pumpkin.

Pinterest project lesson learned

After (me) crying for a little while and hugging baby T for about 2 hours, I put him to bed and kissed him 900 times, vowed to be a better mom, smashed the pumpkin over my balcony into the dumpster, quit social media (for five days) until I got over it, and didn’t post his adorable little pumpkin photo for another two weeks after that. When I look at the photo today, I still feel guilt and shame from it but it’s just too cute to delete from life. I do however, file this in my Pinterest project ‘fail’ pile.

The moral of this story is, if you too feel the need to take the baby-in-a-pumpkin photo, here are some friendly tips:

1. Get a GIANT pumpkin. I don’t care if it’s $20 per pound, just get the biggest one you can find even if your kid is tiny. Trust me, bigger is better. In fact, get one big enough to fit two babies just in case.
2. Do not attempt this photoshoot alone. It’s helpful to have two people present should a stuckage situation occur.
3. Carve all holes much larger than they need to be – again, bigger is better.
4. Don’t feel guilty about taking this photo. I’m not kidding when I say being in a pumpkin was baby T’s most exciting part of October 2013. He loved it! Despite my mental trauma, it turned out cute and I’m super excited to show it to his first girlfriend one day.

But oh the trauma-mama. We live, we learn, we get bigger pumpkins. Happy Halloween, y’all!


This post was originally published on Stamford Mommy and has been republished here with permission. Written by Deb Biondolillo.

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