5 Tips for Carving the Perfect Pumpkin this Halloween

Spooky. Creepy. Goblins and ghosts!

The Halloween season is oh-so-slowly creeping upon us. A time for trick or treating and dressing up in the zaniest of costumes.

Although costumes and candy usually take center stage, carving a pumpkin is the perfect activity to squeeze in some quality family time. Carving the perfect pumpkin is all about having the right tools and a few ideas to give you the creative edge.

Here are 5 tips to help you out.

  1. Pick the Perfect Pumpkin: When picking out your pumpkin, be on the lookout for a solid, even-colored pumpkin. Pumpkins can sometimes be spotty and discolored. Try to find one that is as orange as can be! Also, beware of any soft spots. If you’re ambitious this year and want to do an intricate design, be sure to find a pumpkin that has a flat surface.
  2. Find a Stencil: Get creative this year and try something new! The same old silly Jack-O-Lantern grin could use a facelift. Here are some stencils that you can print out on your computer. Thanks, Better Homes & Gardens!
  3. Get the Right Tools: If you’re using one knife to carve the whole pumpkin, you’re doing it wrong! Here’s what you need: a serrated knife (that is sharp), a large metal spoon or scoop, and a few small pairing knives to get that detail you want.
  4. Preserve Your Jack-O-Lantern: There’s nothing worse (and sometimes silly looking) than a Jack-O-Lantern’s smile turning into a shriveled grin. This year, take a little extra time to help preserve your masterpiece. Follow these steps to make your Jack-O-Lantern live even longer!
  5. Light It Up, Without the Fire: Jack-O-Lanterns have traditionally been lit with candles. This year, go for one of those small, battery-powered LED lights. You can even find ones that flicker like a real candle! Be sure to check out your local Halloween or crafts store for this type of candle.

Fourth Of July Desserts to Try This Year

Fourth of July is the perfect holiday for firing up the grill, sipping on ice-cold drinks, and laying on a blanket to watch a spectacular fireworks display.

But what’s a holiday without sweets?!

We’ve searched and found five different Fourth of July themed desserts that are delicious and guaranteed to impress your friends and family. Plus, making themed desserts is always more fun!

What traditional dishes or desserts does your family serve on the Fourth of July? Share in the comments section below.

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Berry Patchwork Tart from Better Homes & Gardens.
Click here for the recipe!

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Patriotic Caramel Corn from A Farmgirl’s Dabbles.
Click here for the recipe!

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Patriotic Watermelon & Feta from Wenderly.
Click here for the recipe!

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Chocolate Peanut Butter Marshmallow Pops from Sweet Treats and More.
Click here for the recipe!

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Fourth of July Rice Krispie Treats from Lil’ Luna.
Click here for the recipe!

The Lake of the Ozarks Is Just Five Clicks Away

Do you have a week or weekend in mind to visit the Lake of the Ozarks?

If so, then you’re just a few clicks away from booking your stay!

It’s easier than ever to make a reservation at one of our gorgeous properties. ┬áHere’s how.

1. Simply visit our website: http://www.crystalwatervillas.com

2. Choose your arriving and departing dates in the upper left hand corner

3. Choose which location you want to stay – Osage Beach, Greenview, Lake Ozark, etc.

4. Choose a property

5. Choose number of bedrooms and how many guests there will be and click “Check Availability”

From there, you can browse the available properties and simply click “Book It Now” to get started!!

As always, please give us a call if you have any questions: 1-866-273-2169.

Have a great weekend!!

– Sherry