Author: Cindi Lou Grant
Hero: Nature skills that will make you, your child’s hero.
Creating a Wild Flower Journal with Kids
As the summer is fading into fall so are the wildflowers. Keeping a flower pressing journal can keep them around a little longer and commemorate the end of a beautiful summer. It is also a fun activity that gets everyone outside and encourages creativity.
The whole wildflower journaling process can be as involved or as simple as you want to make it! I think that kids are most engaged when there is room for creativity and so I keep it pretty free form and let them pick what to press and let them make their journal their way.
This 3 step activity will take you through how to press wild flowers properly and save them as keepsakes for years to come. Because pressing and drying the flowers can take anywhere from a week to a month it is also a fun activity to come back to after the flowers are gone. Save the journaling for a rainy day in fall when everyone is cozied up inside.
Step 1: Gather
In Utah, where Sawyer is based, mountain wild flowers are in their late summer phase. It has been fun to watch all the different flowers bloom at different times in the season. The wildflowers we found above 8,000’ were still blooming strong for the end of August.
Taking kids up into the mountains to gather a few of them can be a really fun day adventure. However, it doesn’t need to be that involved. Where ever you like to take your kids for nature walks will work. We can press leaves, flowers, and stems so be creative and let the kids pick out what they want to collect.
Step 2: Press
We found all kinds of flowers as keepsakes. Not wanting to have a big impact, we only picked the ones that were in abundance. Other abundant ideas would be pine needles, leaves, and even seeding grass.
Pressing them into pretty configurations can be as simple as using big heavy books, to getting a real flower press that you crank down and add pressure to. Either way, you will want to get them nice and dry. I press in the pages of a big book, weight them, and let them sit for about a month.
Step 3: Journal
When they are crisp and dry you can get your craft area set up. I like to use the kitchen table but I know of many who have craft areas where kids can get messy and have fun with it. Get out some mod podge, a foam brush, and your journals. Mod Podge, for those who don't know, is a glue sealer that you brush over to seal the flowers to the page. It creates a nice uniform journal page at will hold the flowers in place. Let your kids arrange them on the page however they like. With a foam brush, shmear on
Let your kids arrange them on the page however they like. With a foam brush, shmear on mod podge evenly and place the flowers onto the wet page. Let it set up for a minute or two and coat mod podge over the top of the whole page. Let it dry thoroughly before closing the journal.
Simple as 1, 2, 3 these journal pages can bring some color into an otherwise white winter. Who knows, maybe you will forget about it and years down the road your child will open to that page and remember that summer day outside with you.