My friend Nicole sent me a screenshot of an ad for pumpkin spice cereal. Now, I don’t eat cereal. I haven’t eaten cereal since I discovered the quarter-cup of sugar I mixed in with the two drops of milk to coat the cereal wasn’t exactly the best choice for a healthy breakfast.
I texted Nicole back: I don’t eat cereal. You know, as if the world revolved around me and my tastes.
She immediately returned my text, proving that indeed the world does revolve around me and my tastes: I know! Instead, we can make candy patties, marshmallow bars, crumb topping for a pumpkin cake … the possibilities are endless.
Everyone needs a Nicole in his or her life. Sure she’s an enabler, but she’s a good kind of enabler.
A few weeks after that, Nicole texted: It’s on the shelves! A few days later, she showed up at my door with marshmallow bars.
I remember just a few short years ago when the only pumpkin you could get was pumpkin pie in November and the occasional pumpkin roll if you were feeling fancy or your friends and neighbors were feeling generous.
Our first Thanksgiving together, I proudly made the perfect pumpkin pie only to discover that my husband can’t stand pumpkin. Because the pumpkin pie season as so short, and I hated to waste food, I had to eat the whole pie by myself.
The next Thanksgiving—and subsequent Thanksgiving there after—I conveniently forgot that my husband didn’t care for pumpkin, would make a pumpkin pie and then would dutifully eat it all by myself.
When we had daughters, they also didn’t care for pumpkin (and it’s not because I hoarded the pie and kept it to myself, in case you were wondering, although the thought did cross my mind), so the solitary pumpkin consumption continued.
I’m not sure when the passion for all things pumpkin exploded, but eventually pumpkin lovers were met with a plethora of pumpkin offerings beginning as soon as we returned to work on Tuesday following Labor Day and lasted until the last Christmas decoration was stowed away in the attack.
And I could not be happier! Pumpkin pancakes? Yes, please. Pumpkin baklava? Opa! Pumpkin stew? Well … maybe. Pumpkin cheesecake? Pass my elastic pants. Pumpkin croissants? Oui! Pumpkin granola? Groovy, man. Pumpkin shampoo and body soap? (record scratch to silent) Ummmm … What?
‘Tis true. Pumpkin shampoo and body soap exists, friends.
Just last week, my daughter and I were at our local farmers market and she asked if she could get some toiletries from her favorite homemade-everything booth. She selected Pumpkin shampoo and body soap.
“Wait a minute,” I interjected as she held her priceless treasures close to her chest. “You don’t even like pumpkin.”
“But I love the smell!” she replied, with a look in her eyes that told me she had been taken over by the Pumpkin Spice Movement that sweeps through our great land every fall.
As the official pumpkin lover of our family, I was confused. Pumpkin was meant to be consumed. “But,” I fretted, “Even though your hair is always a gorgeous autumn color like the leaves in new England, I’m afraid I’ll want to eat your hair.”
“You’ll stay away from me and my pumpkin toiletries, Mom. You can control yourself.” She said that with a certainty I couldn’t comprehend.
I held my hand out and took the shampoo, lid open, to my nose. Inhaling deeply, I knew it was the real deal. There was a slight soap scent to it but it still made me want to cuss like a sailor so I could have my mouth washed out with the pumpkin shampoo.
As my daughter pried the shampoo from my hands and away from my nose (and quite possibly my mouth), I felt a sudden creative inspiration that I hadn’t felt since I made that one pumpkin pie in March almost twenty years ago.
What if we could make pumpkin laundry soap? And dishwasher soap? And furniture polish? I already had pumpkin candles and essential oils for the months of Pumpkin Spice Season. My daughter was getting the shampoo (despite my very real fear of eating her hair). What if we had pumpkin toothpaste? And pumpkin perfume? And pumpkin-scented nail polish that was edible so we could chew on our nails and get our pumpkin fix?
I immediately created a (another, if I’m being honest here) Pumpkin board on Pinterest.
Then my daughter put back her pumpkin-scented shampoo and soap and settled on lemongrass shampoo and grapefruit soap.
“What are you doing?” I screeched loud enough for the entire farmer’s market to turn and look at us.
“I’m saving your sanity,” my daughter sighed.
Pumpkin season has its place, I guess. And on her head is not the place.
Heather Davis is a momma, a writer and a teacher—believe it or not! Her latest book is “Sundays At The Fields,” a softball family devotional. You can contact her through her website, www.Heather-Davis.net.