As a little girl, I always wanted to make a string of popcorn and cranberry garland for our Christmas tree, but never knew how to make one. I remember seeing them on trees in books and on TV, and always thought it would be so much fun!
This year, with a little help from the folks at JOLLY TIME Pop Corn I've been able to work in the kitchen side by side with my kids to make our own popcorn snowmen from traditional popcorn balls, as well as a string of garland for the first time! And, it was so much easier than I thought. I'd love to think that we've been able to start a new Christmas family tradition this year!
The first thing we tackled were the popcorn snowmen. I followed this great recipe straight from JOLLY TIME Pop Corn, and although it was a very sticky process, the kids and I rolled up our sleeves and got to it.
Of course, I handled all of the hot stuff, and didn't let the kids come near the stovetop or even the counters until everything was cooled off.
This nifty popcorn baller made rolling the perfect size balls so easy.
As we worked, the kids mostly wanted to eat the popcorn and marshmallows without creating the snowmen, but I was a mom on a mission and in the end we got a few good snowmen out of them after all, as well as a few proud kids!
The next project on our list was the popcorn garland.
I'm a little embarrassed to say how happy I was to see the directions, and realize that this really wasn't going to be as complicated as I'd originally thought. The only detail that threw me off, and made me wait until the next day was the suggestion that the popcorn was best used a day after it's been popped.
But, pop it we did, and the next day my 10 year old and I were on a mission to create this beauty. In fact, once I got it started for him, my son
It was a bit more time consuming than I had originally thought it might be, so we didn't create a very big strand at first. Also, because we used a sewing needle to poke through the cranberries and popcorn, the little guys couldn't help with this one.
My seven year old, however, wanted the family to think he did, and definitely wasn't going to miss a photo-opp proving that he did indeed get his hands on the garland.
Although at this point our garland isn't nearly enough to go around a Christmas tree, I think we've come up with another creative way to show it off until we string more- reindeer jewelry of course.
I can imagine giving a mason jar filled with popcorn kernels and a set of recipe cards as a teacher or neighbor gift this year.
We really enjoyed working on these two projects, and I have plenty of popcorn leftover from my popcorn jar to make more as the holiday season progresses.
We're looking forward to keeping up with this new tradition, and doing it all over again next year!
Here's a little more about the JOLLY TIME Pop Corn company-
What are the holidays without traditions? If one family knows this answer best, it’s the Smith’s. The Smith family owns JOLLY TIME Pop Corn, an Iowan brand that has been handing down the American tradition of popcorn making for almost 100 years.
JOLLY TIME has banded together with another centenarian, family-owned business, Habelman Cranberry, to help you pass along a holiday tradition so antiquated that it began when there weren’t lights to put on trees: Stringing cranberry popcorn garlands. Festive and family-friendly, this beautiful craft will be sure to bring together the people who make it, as well as those you gift it to.
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