Halloween is only two and a half weeks away, so now is the time that everyone will be carving their pumpkins and getting their home ready for trick-or-treaters! Here are some tips for carving the pumpkin(s) that will be sitting outside of your Denver home to welcome these costumed children.

Cutting the hole in the bottom of the pumpkin will remove bumps and make it sit more level on the ground as well as make it easier for you to put a light source inside. Use a serrated knife but the hole, and use a large spoon to remove the insides of the pumpkin. Try not to get to covered in seeds! When carving the design on the side of the pumpkin, use a small paring knife. Pick up a couple of pumpkin-carving kits if you and your family want to make more intricate designs.

Cover the carved areas and inside of the pumpkin with petroleum jelly to preserve it and make it last as long as possible. Grocery stores also carry pumpkin preservation spray for those that want to make this part a little easier.

Illuminating pumpkins is now easier than ever. LEDs are an easy and cheap way to light a pumpkin without the hazard of candles. However, LEDs do not look the same, so candles might still be your best bet for an authentic Halloween look. Don’t forget to use votive or pillar candles, place them on a plate that will catch any drips, and cut a small hold in the top of the pumpkin to allow heat to escape.

HGTV has plenty of Halloween ideas to get you and your family in high spirits! I hope everyone in Denver has a spooky holiday!