Friday, January 09, 2009

Baby, it's cold outside...

Cold is relative, of course. This is California, and we'll take our winter however we can get it. Even if our snow has to come in the form of sugar cookies.

Yesterday we headed to the park with a bunch of our homeschooling friends, and the kids were so cold their fingers and noses were aching in the first 10 minutes. After running around for half an hour trying to warm up, those without coats took a break from climbing up the slides to huddle under a fleece blanket together.

Unless you're planning a trip to the nearby snowy mountains, most people don't even own real coats around here. I only remembered gloves for one of my boys, the other two had to hide their hands in their sleeves.

Of course, after a while, they were having so much fun (and their digits were so numb) that only the parents noticed the sun still hadn't shown up, and it seemed like it was getting colder, not warmer. Eventually, we had to drag them away, crying, "But it's NOT cold!"

Back home we made hot chocolate first thing, and settled into our cozy, warm, 64-degree house.

It's been a lovely week. The day before, we spent all day with friends turning paper into snowflakes, making snowflake crystals, and eating snowflake cookies -- of course.

In case you don't have real snow outside either -- or maybe you do and the cold is truly foreboding...

I used our snowflake cookie cutter and this recipe to make vegan sugar cookies and frosting. Because of the soymilk, the frosting isn't truly white, so you might try rice or cow's milk instead.

We used white coffee filters for easy cut-out snowflakes. Just fold them in half, then in thirds to get six sides.

Crystal Snowflakes (courtesy of Hogwarts Homeschool, Mugglefied by me)

3 cups boiling water
9 Tbs borax
Heat-proof glass or jar (wide-mouthed canning jars work great)
White chenille stem ("pipe cleaner"), cut into thirds
Fishing line or string

1) Twist the cut stems together, and spread into a snowflake shape.
2) Tie one end of the string to the shape, the other to the pencil, with just a few inches between so the wire snowflake doesn't sit on the bottom of the jar.
3) Fill the jar with boiling water, add the Borax one Tbs at a time, stirring each time.
4) Lower shape into the mix, set the pencil across the opening of the jar.
5) Let it sit overnight undisturbed.


~Bobbi~ said...

That is so true!I don't even own any real thick coats. Sometimes when it's not that cold, I still wear my sandals. It would be neat to have a snowy winter for once.

Lynette said...

The snowflake day sounds really fun, you are so creative!

kathy said...

What a day! I love what you worked in to it. Thanks for the recipes and link

princessmama said...

Fun looking snowflake crafts:) Do the snowflake crystals hold up to being hung somewhere for a bit? Or is it more along the lines of a science experiment crafty thing that's just fun to see the results? I like the idea of using coffee filters. Construction paper was hard for my guys to cut and we ended up running low on printer paper...

Crunchy Christian Mom said...

Princess Mama -- yes, the crystal snowflakes are sturdy enough to hang! You could make lots of them, as long as you're willing to keep boiling water for each jar, and don't mind the borax cleanup. :)

Lift Up Your Hearts said...

What beautiful celebrations of our California Cold! Lynette & I chickened out of park day and stayed home to eat sunflower seed butter and jelly sandwiches instead. ;-)

mandi said...

fun! we are the same way with our kind of cold winters here.

btw- i really like your sugar and flour 'canisters'. so pretty!

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Ruth said...

Fun! Our kids would love to do these! ... even though it's the middle of summer here! It was 40 degrees C today (which is 104 degrees F)!

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