Are you tired of me writing about leaves yet? I apologize if you are – this will be our last post on leaves for awhile. I hope. The boys are still busy spending a lot of their days collecting, sorting, and otherwise consumed with the huge array of autumn leaves on the farm. Logically, a next step was to find a way to make these collections stay beautiful longer – and so we preserved!
Preserving leaves is something I have done for a very long time. We would do it when I was a child, and I have done it fairly regularly since then. Or so I thought. My Madeline who is 12 told me that she remembered preserving leaves with me a loooong time ago, but not recently. So perhaps I am not as die-hard at preserving leaves as I told myself I was.
Regardless, we did preserve autumn leaves this season and I have the pictures to prove it!
To preserve leaves I do the same thing each season (well, apparently not each season)
First we collect some lovely fresh leaves. I like to collect them early in the morning when they are still nice and wet from the morning dew. I think they are softer and fresher at this time – but that could very well be all in my head.
Next, we lay them on a towel to dry as we begin to melt our wax.
This year I melted some beeswax on the stove over medium heat. You could also use old candles. I was thinking that crayons would likely even work … and might give a really neat colored look. I will have to give this one a try. (Oh gosh, I just got another leaf post idea — will it never end?!?!)
Once the wax is completely melted I brought over our now dry leaves and we simply dipped them into the wax. I did the first few, as the wax was super hot and a little bubbly. I dipped them in and held them upside down for a few seconds to drip, and then laid them on some parchment paper – which reminds me – you will also need to lay down parchment paper 🙂
Then I let the little ones have a turn. Of course the wax was still hot so the children needed to be properly supervised. Depending on your comfort level you may wish them to just watch the dipping of the leaves.
If the wax gets too cool the leaves will start to get a “waxy coating” on top of them – a whitish residue. Simply warm up the wax again on the stove.
They dry super quick and are ready for play, sorting, and decorating!
We decorated our big kitchen window
And Madeline helped Sam decorate his bedroom with his favorite letter and his most prized leaves.
Preserving leaves is really simple, and makes for a lovely way to spend a Fall morning. The scent of warm beeswax, the pretty colours of Autumn, and the lively buzz of happy kids – a lovely morning indeed.
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