Today's Snack: Cut veggie strips to look like crayons for a colorful
snack dipped in sour cream with a few shakes of onion and parsley flakes. You
can cut carrot strips to represent "orange crayons," celery sticks for "green,"
yellow squash strips for "yellow," eggplant strips for "purple," and red pepper
strips for "red." What other crayon colors can you dream up as fresh vegetables
. . . and then turn in a work of art that you eat?
Other nearly-flat natural items,
Old and broken crayons
Kitchen mallet, hammer or building block
Zip-close plastic bag
Plain white paper
Iron & ironing board
First, go for a nature walk and collect colorful leaves and other
autumn treasures that will lie flat. Don't pick up pine cones, seed pods or
sticks that are much thicker than a toothpick; you need flat items. Pine
needles, ferns and other plants with interesting shapes will work.
Now peel the wrappers off broken crayons that you don't want any
more. Save the wrappers; you'll need them later.
Put the crayons into a zip-close plastic bag, go onto a surface
that can't be damaged such as a patio or garage floor, and crush the crayons
into bits, using the mallet, hammer or building block.
Scoop out one teaspoon or less of crayon bits onto a sheet of
Decide what size you want your placemat to be, and cut out two
sheets of waxed paper to that size. Put one piece, shiny side UP, on a
newspaper-covered surface. Now arrange the leaves, grass, crayon wrappers, and
crayon bits on the shiny side of the waxed paper.
Put a few pieces of plain white paper on your ironing board to
protect it from possible spread of newsprint or crayons. Preheat your iron on
"warm." Carefully move the decorated wax paper, with the newspaper beneath it,
to the ironing board.
Place the second piece of waxed paper, shiny side DOWN, on top of
the first piece that you've decorated. Put a sheet of newspaper on top of this.
Then put a sheet or two of white paper on top of that, to protect your iron's
surface from the possible spread of newsprint or crayons.
Using a warm iron, gently iron the plain white paper that is on
top of your "stack" for two or three minutes. It might be best to ask an adult
to do this part! Press down fairly firmly, but don't "squash."
The heat from the iron will melt the crayons, and the wax paper
will laminate itself together. That means the top and bottom will stick
together as if they are one piece. And since they're clear, you'll be able to
see your collage of autumn beauty . . . but it's not too pretty to eat off of!
And you can wipe it clean to use again next year.
If you have time, make one of these special placemats for everyone
you're going to share Thanksgiving dinner with, and everyone can take one home
as your gift. They'll all be THANKFUL for nature's bounty, and your love and