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Dawn Isaac

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Christmas cress elves, channelling tulips and general silliness

Posted by Dawn Isaac on 10 Dec 2009 at 12:12 PM


I'm beginning to think I may be a tulip. After all I like to lie in the sun in the summer and I'm downright frisky in the spring, but when it comes to winter, I just want to climb into a bed and wait for the weather to pick up.

This general winter hibernation appears to be affecting my blogging too.  Let's face it, there's very little to get excited about in the garden right now and, unless my kids show a sudden interest in turning the compost heap, there's not a great deal of family gardening to be done either.

Still, I'm doing my very best to show some enthusiasm this week as we are coming up to the last gardening club of the year at pre-school.

It gets tricky about now as there's not a whole lot to do. We've already started off the last of the veg outdoors, created some bulb pots and last week we even planted an apple tree.  Actually, that's something of the Royal 'we' as I did the whole 'digging hole and planting in the rain' bit, while some very dry, small children waved at me cheerfully from the window. 

Anyway, this week, we are getting festive and making Christmas cress elves.

I know some people are a little dismissive of cress growing but I'm never quite sure why.  After all, it's the only crop I know where you can see the seeds germinating in a matter of hours and be eating it within a week. Plus, it's cheap, cheerful and grows all year round.

Of course the objections may be more about the habit of growing cress in silly pots with silly faces, but what can I say, I'm a sucker for a silly face.  Plus, with my children eating up to 30 small, non-recyclable pots of yoghurt a week, I'm quite keen to find ways of reusing silly pots too.

So, if silly cress activities are your sort of thing, this is how to make Christmas cress elves.

Take a toilet roll inner and cut a piece of green paper long enough to go around the tube.

Add a small strip of darker green paper for the belt and cut a triangular shape for the hat and another shape for the feet - make both of these slightly longer than needed so you can stick them to the inside of the tube.

Use white stickers or paper for the face and ears and then detail the face, trousers, belt, buckle and shoes using a black pen.

Stick the decorated green paper around the tube to make the elf body and then stick on the hat and shoes.

Fill the yoghurt pot with some cotton wool, nearly to the top, wet this and then sprinkle on the cress seeds.

Put the yoghurt pot in the top of the tube, place on a sunny windowsill and wait for the elf's hair to sprout.

Finally, make a large pot of tea, unwrap a packet of Jammy Dodgers and open a good book, safe in the knowledge you have completed your 'good parenting' task for the day - Cbeebies can take it from here...


miranda said:

That's a really nice idea. I think my young nieces would enjoy making those, so shall tell my sister in law about it.

on 10 Dec 2009 at 04:31 PM

Dawn Isaac said:

Thanks Miranda.  I did a trial with my 4-year-old and 6-year-old and they loved it.

on 11 Dec 2009 at 09:58 AM

Christmas Elf Costume said:

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on 11 Dec 2009 at 02:20 PM

Christmas Elf Costume said:

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on 11 Dec 2009 at 04:47 PM