On thursday we celebrated our very first Michaelmas :)
I had found a great pattern and had been secretly cutting and stitching together a little wool dragon each night after the kids were in bed that would be perfect for our little playmobil Sir George to battle. I finished it up just in time and set it up on our nature table for them to find in the morning when they awoke.
Of course they beat me out of bed and I could hear them gathering excitedly around the Michaelmas scene when they got up and then the quiet that followed as they discovered the little coloring pages of a knight fighting a dragon that I had left on their tables for them to color. It was perfect. I had a few minutes to catch up on what I had to do to get the day started and they had fun picking their favorite colors for their dragons :)
After lunch we took some time to read a little story about Sir George and the Dragon. There seem to be a lot of different versions of Michaelmas stories from St. Michael hurling the dragon (lucifer) from heaven to Sir George slaying the dragon and our gentler version that I decided to go with of a dragon that had the hiccups and the gnomes that called on Sir George to help them solve their problem of a pesky fire breathing dragon. You can find a few different versions here:
The Most Beautiful Dragon
A Little Flower Garden's Michaelmas Festival
Our Little Nature Nests Michaelmas Story
In the end our dragon became the bread maker and I thought it was a perfect fit for my 5 year old :) It came from a copy of Before the Journey that I purchased last year.
With our story fresh in our minds and the anticipation of a fire breathing bread maker we went into the kitchen to make some green bread dough together to shape our dragon out of :)
poked in spines made of almonds and we cut in scales with a knife that puffed up and gave him a great lumpy body. Oh boy did he taste good with dinner, although there is something very odd about eating green bread. It just feels weird *grin*.
I can't wait until next year so that we can do it again and maybe add in some more fun ideas that I've seen around the web. One great post with lots of links is over at Rockin' Granola but if you google Michaelmas you will find tons of inspiration!
In case you would like to try my bread recipe I thought I would share it with you. It makes awesome soft white buns if you want a non green or dragonish version for another day LOL.
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup unsalted butter
a dribble of maple syrup
2 1/2 tsp. yeast
3 1/2 cups unbleached flour
green food coloring optional
Heat your milk and water until it is nice and warm, pour it into your mixing bowl along with your maple syrup, sprinkle your yeast over the water/milk and allow it to proof for about 10 minutes until nice and bubbly. Add your melted butter, egg, and 1 cup of flour and mix. I like to do this to break up my egg nicely before adding the rest of the flour. Now add in your remaining 2 1/2 cups of flour and mix until it forms a ball that you can turn out onto your counter to knead. Knead for about 5-8 minutes until nice and soft and smooth. Cover and allow it to rest until doubled in size. Punch down your dough after it rises and you can now shape it into your dragon, rolls or whatever you would like to use it for :)
Bake at 425 Fahrenheit for 15-20 minutes or until nice and golden and sounds hollow when you tap on it.
If you celebrated Michaelmas and shared photos or stories on your blog I would love to stop by and see how you made your day special :)