As these pictures were uploading I ran out to the trash can to throw away two of our moldy pumpkins, so yeah, pumpkin carving seems like a lot of work with not much payoff. But the girls think its fun, and they willingly touch the guts, so they're braver than some kids.
Ava was a little skeptical and gave me some scowls when I tried to make her stick her hand in there and take a picture, so I did most of the cleaning for her pumpkin and all of the carving. Alana cleaned her entire pumpkin, drew out the design, and carved the whole thing herself (with a pumpkin carving tool, not a knife).
David had elaborate plans and then ended up just carving a standard jack-o-lantern, but his pumpkin took forever to clean out so he was tired. That's what happens when you pick the biggest one, it has the most guts. Mine was a green pumpkin that Alana had picked from a pumpkin patch, so I made a Frankenpumpkin. Plus the inside had barely anything in it and took less than two minutes to clean out. It was like carving a giant zucchini.
Even with all of the work and an early grave for two pumpkins, its was still fun. I won't be convinced to paint my pumpkins, its just not the same.