Sunday, April 10, 2011

Dandelion ~ The Children's Flower

'And where should you like most of all to live?' asked the Angel of the dandelion?

'Oh,' cried the dandelion, 'I want to live wherever the happy children may find me when they run by to school, or romp and play in the fields. I want to live by the roadside, and in the meadows, and push up between the stones in the city yards, and make everyone glad because of my bright colours.'

'You are the flower I love the most' said the Angel of the flowers as she laid her hand upon the dandelion's yellow, curly head. You shall blossom everywhere from spring til fall, and be the children's flower.'

That is why the dandelion comes so early and pushes her head up everywhere - by the hedge and field, and hut and wall and has such a long, sweet life.

(Read the rest of this old legend here by Carolyn S. Bailey)

Over the past wee while Andy and I have been noticing lots and lots of dandelions popping their little heads up. They are so bright and jolly and add such a splash of colour wherever we go.

So in celebration of this wonderful plant, this flower of the children, yesterday we had a dandelion day.

We started off with a little early morning, pyjama crafting... We made these little dandelion broaches...

using our trusty pompom maker we made small, yellow woollen dandelion heads.
Instead of catching the wool up in another strand of wool we used a pipe cleaner.
we wrapped this in green wool, and there you have it a dandelion.

Benny wore his as a badge, but Rebe tied hers up in her hair...
Now they are in a tiny vase on our kitchen table.
a dandelion Rebe made of duplo.
The weather was so wonderful yesterday morning, warm and bright and clear. Perfect for going dandelion picking.
Our picking spot of choice was the grass verge next to the beach. We collected 2 big bowls full of flowers and one of leaves before the kids lost interest and shed most of their clothes to go and play on the beach and in the sea. I sat on a bench watching them and picking the petals out of the flowers with a sleeping baby on my back, chatting to a local who was walking his dog. It was a pretty blissful Sunday morning :-)
A little random act of beauty... roar a dande-LION!

Home again and, after a spot of lunch and drying off, we rolled up our sleeves and baked dandelion cookies...
1/2 cup veg oil, 1/2 cup honey, 2 eggs, a wee drop vanilla extract, 1 cup plain flour, 1 cup oats, 1/2 cup dandelion petals. Mix wet, add dry. Plop spoonfuls onto a baking sheet. Put in pre-heated oven @180 for about 10 - 15 mins.

These are really nice, although I think I'd add a little lemon rind next time I make them.
Dandelion cordial: Heat equal parts of water and sugar in a pot to dissolve. Add dandelion petals (only so many that they are covered by the liquid) bring to the boil and simmer for 5 mins. Allow to steep (preferably overnight but ours did for about 5 hours and was good). Add lemon juice to taste and strain into a jar. Will keep in fridge for a week or so.

We mixed ours with fizzy water and had dandelion lemonade with dinner (after all we were having a celebration!)
For dinner we had baked potatoes and salad with some of the dandelion leaves we had collected.

It was such a nice day, and I don't think I'll look at a dandelion the same way again. Great wee things that they are :-)

Hope you all had a lovely weekend too x


  1. What a great craft activity! I really love your little girl's duplo dandelion - it is very inventive! I never new you could eat dandelions, we have hundreds pop up around our garden - must give them a try. We used to call them "pee the beds" in Shetland when I was growing up, not sure why, wonder if they are diuretic?

  2. So many ideas! Where do you get them all from? I was going to try dandelion cordial this year, but may have to borrow a few more of your ideas. What a lovely day!

  3. Laura, this is a wonderful post!!!
    I love the dandelions you made with wool, I think we'll have to make some of those too!

  4. bummer just lost long comment - bleeping internet- love this post, really inspiring, never knew you could do so many things with dandelions. never knew about pompom makers either -much better than my method which takes forever. thanks for joining in random acts of beauty.

    Will you do series on other flowers- roses and such when their season comes?

  5. Wonderful post - I love the dandelion shaped baked potatoes such a great idea! They are such a beautiful hardy little flower and Willow delights in finding them wherever we go, Mia and Tarka said that they think that they look like flowers made of sunshine!

    (And, yes Dandelions are a diuretic, so that name fits perfectly!)

  6. I love this dandilion celebration! Lovely. I think we'll have to try those recipes- once the snow melts and dandilions show their pretty heads! And those wool ones are terrific!

  7. What a delightful day! I love the legend.

    Hav a great week!

  8. Wonderful. We love dandelions. There are so many activities to do connected with dandelions.
    Hooray for dandelions!

  9. WOW! I love this. I love the dandelion pom-poms. Love.


  10. Every Thursday in my home I host artycraftysnackyplay for a bunch of home educated children including my own. On reading your article in Juno magazine I was inspired to try your dandelion brooches and it was a hit. So simple. So effective. So, thank you.

  11. Hi Kim, what wonderful feedback thanks so much :-) Your group sounds very similar to our Buddies group that we do here, it's great to know other people doing something similar to share ideas with. Thanks so much for getting in touch, hugs x