Weekly Family Activity: Saving the colors of the season

November 6, 2009


“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven…”
- Ecclesiastes 3:1

If you live in a place where the seasons change, you get to witness the shift in God’s rich palette of colors every few months. And autumn-leavesright now, it’s likely that the last leaves are clinging to the trees in their brightest reds, oranges, and golds.

This weekend, take a Sabbath walk with your family, and look for vivid leaves that have fallen to the ground. Gather up your favorites, and preserve their color with the following activity:

•    Bright autumn leaves that haven’t begun to curl yet.
•    Paper towels
•    Wax paper
•    Iron and ironing board
•    Scissors

•    First, dry the leaves by placing them between two paper towels and ironing over the towels with an iron set on medium heat.
•    Next, place the leaves between two sheets of wax paper (with a rag or thick sheet of paper on top and bottom, to protect them and the ironing board), and iron them again.
•    Once the leaves have been sealed in wax (about 2-5 minutes) and cooled, try peeling the wax paper away from them. If this doesn’t work, simply cut around the leaves with a pair of scissors.

These preserved leaves can be used to create all kinds of natural gifts or decorations: Arrange the leaves in a picture frame, glue them to a card, or simply place them in a vase for seasonal décor. Whatever your family chooses to do with them, these leaves will be a lasting reminder of the beauty God unleashes each autumn.

Learn more about the trees that your leaves belong to by identifying them with help from the Arbor Day Foundation’s website.

Getting even more serious about tree identification? Check out the classic pocket-sized, easy-to-use Tree Finder field guide series:

Tree Finder (East of the Rocky Mountains): A Manual for the Identification of Trees by Their Leaves
Pacific Coast Tree Finder: A Pocket Manual for Identifying Pacific Coast Trees
Rocky Mountain Tree Finder: A Manual for Identifying Rocky Mountain Trees
Desert Tree Finder: A Pocket Manual for Identifying Desert Trees

And, once the leaves have fallen, try
Winter Tree Finder (by the same publisher)

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