Baloo's Bugle

November 2007 Cub Scout Roundtable Issue

Volume 14, Issue 4
December 2007 Theme

Theme: Celebrations Around the World
Webelos: Craftsman & Scientist
Tiger Cub Requirement 2


Advancement Ideas:

Tigers |   Ach 1D, 1F
Elect. 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 8, 14

Wolf-       Ach 2A, 11A,
Elect. 4A, 9A, 9B. 9C,11D,17C, 20E, 20F

Bear |      Ach 1A, 8B, 13C, 16A, 18B, 22B
Elect. 20B

Advancement Ideas:
Alice, Golden Empire Council

The Language & Culture or Heritage Belt Loops fits this theme | especially if you are learning how different people celebrate | boys of every rank can work on it.

Tiger Achievements:
Ach. #1D | make a family scrapbook to show how your family celebrates (check the RAFT site for a way to use recycled materials); Ach. #4D | use this as a "springboard" to talk about how misunderstanding of another culture can lead to bias;
Ach. #5F | Character Connection of Faith;

Tiger Electives:
Elec. #1 | Share how different families celebrate;
Elec. #2 | make some decorations for a celebration;
Elec. #4 | frame a picture of your family enjoying a celebration;
Elec. #6 | share a song used for a celebration;
Elec. #7 | make and play an instrument used to celebrate in your own or another culture;
Elec. #8 | getting to know your religious leader can help you complete the Faith Character Connection;
Elec. #11 | do a project to help the needy;

Elec #12 | make some cards to share with someone who is lonely; 
Elec. #25 | make a holiday snack to share; 
Elec. #36 |go to a holiday musical performance or play with your family or den;

Wolf Achievements:
Ach. #5 | if tools are being used to make a gift for someone;
Ach. #8c | if you make breakfast for your family for St. Lucia's Day | (check out the ideas for Dec. 13th); 
Ach. #10b | if you make a game for your family for Christmas; 
Ach. #10f,g- if you attend a Holiday program or have a game night with your family; 
Ach. #11 | Complete the Character Connection for Faith and work on the religious award for your faith; 

Wolf Electives:
Elec. #3 | make something useful (how about door stops for your chartered organization or your church?); 
Elec. #6b | if you choose a book about holiday customs or another culture; 
Elec. #9 | if you help prepare for a holiday party or make a gift for someone; 
Elec. #11d | if you learn and sing three special Christmas songs, perhaps for a Christmas program at school or church; 
Elec. #20d | if you go skiing,
Elec. #20e, f | if you go ice skating or skate outdoors;
Elec. #22 | if you learn phrases in another language to celebrate another culture's holiday.

Bear Achievements:
Ach. #1
| Faith Character Connection;
Ach. #2 | work on the religious award for your faith; 
Ach. #9f | make a special holiday dessert; 
Ach. #10b | have a family fun night at home or make some gifts together; 
Ach. #13 a, b, c, f, g | Help shop for groceries for Holiday meals, compute the cost per person, learn how to save and keep records of your spending, play a board game that involves using money; 
Ach. #15c | explain and play a game from another country with your den;
Ach. #17a | choose a holiday show to watch with an adult; 
Ach. #18d, e | Write an invitation or thank you notes.

Bear Electives:
Elec. #2 | study and chart the weather; 
Elec. #8 | if you make and play an instrument to celebrate a cultural holiday, or if you play an official instrument as part of holiday performances;
Elec. #11 | if you use a camera to help record holiday and family fun;  

Elec. #20b, c | if you participate in skiing or ice skating.

Webelos Activity Badges:
Artist 3, 6, 7, 8 | if you use these talents to make a gift for someone; 
Craftsman (assigned)| use your skills to make gifts | 2 wooden objects and 4 items from clay, plastic, leather, metal or some other material; 
Family Member #8 | plan a family fun night and #11 | earn the Heritage Belt Loop;
 Scientist (assigned) | try the M&M Chromatography experiment as part of the Science
Belt Loop; Showman, if you do any of the suggested requirements in connection with holiday performances or pack meeting skits, or if you make a set of puppets and put on a show as a special gift.

Ideas for Pack Activities:
Baltimore Area Council

  • Go caroling at a nursing home
  • Sponsor a mitten tree and give mittens to the homeless
  • Adopt a needy family
  • Collect canned goods for the needy
  • Do a neckerchief slide exchange in your Pack
  • Initiate a collection for the World Friendship Fund
  • Have a Pack dinner and have families bring food that their forefathers used to celebrate with
  • Ideas for Den Activities:
  • Learn about holiday customs of the various families in your Den
  • Post a world map and let the boys label where their families came from
  • Make holiday cookies
  • Invite someone from another country to speak at your Den meeting.
  • Have an old fashioned taffy pull
  • Do a good turn for a friend

Milk Jug Luminary
DesPlaines Valley Council

These are my favorite luminaries!! CD


  • Sand,
  • empty plastic gallon milk containers,
  • votive candles or tea lights,
  • scissors,
  • fireplace matches


  • Clean milk gallons and remove all labels.
  • On the side nearest the handle, cut a slit one inch tall and three inches long about one inch up from the bottom.
  • Pour about one inch of sand into the container.  Shake to distribute sand evenly.
  • Push votive or tea light into the middle of the sand.
  • Use fireplace matches to light.


These are very unusual luminary.  They don't blow over or get snuffed out if it's wet and windy.  They give a lovely white light. At a cost of 10 cents each, they are a very inexpensive way to decorate the outdoors at Christmas and other times of the year.  Care must be taken to place the tea light near the center of the container but not directly under the spout.

Ojos de Dios (Eyes of God)
Baltimore Area Council

Mexican Yarn Decorations

The symbolism of God's Eyes goes back many thousands of years and was found in many cultures. They first became popular with the Huichal (whe-cal) Indians of Mexico. They made the God's Eyes as a symbol to protect their home from evil spirits. The God's Eye is now used widely in the southwestern United States as a decoration.

The Ojos can be made in various sizes, from toothpick frames to be used as Christmas tree ornaments to huge wall decorations. The colors used in the Ojos have a special significance:

White - Unknown life before birth

Red - Life Itself

Yellow - Sun, moon, stars

Blue - Sky and water

Black - Death

Brown - Soil

Green - Vegetation

General Instructions

An Ojo made with a popsicle stick base is a good size for Cub Scouts to begin with. When making mini Ojos with toothpicks, it is best to use crochet thread rather than yarn. The yarn is too bulky for the toothpicks.

To Form the Eye or Center:

Two round sticks are needed to form the skeleton. Use toothpicks for tiny Ojos or dowels for larger Ojos. Flat sticks (popsicle or craft sticks) can also be used to create a different look. Round sticks should be notched in the middle and glued together to form a cross.

Wrap yarn around the sticks as shown in Fig. 1. Holding the skeleton in your left hand, wrap yarn over and around each stick (completely encircling the stick). This is the basic wrap. See Fig. 2. Work clockwise if you are right-handed. Continue wrapping in this manner until the desired center size is reached, making sure that you lay the yarn next to the previous row and do not overlap rows.

Changing Colors: To change colors, simply clove hitch (see Fig. 3) and cut the yarn, leaving about 1/2" to be concealed and held by following wraps. Always start a new color on a different arm from the one you just wrapped. Begin the new color with a clove hitch also. White glue can be used to secure ends if necessary.

The Flat Wrap.

This is what you used to make the center. It is done by wrapping over and around each stick, wrapping clockwise. It can be used anywhere else in the design of your Ojo.

The Back Wrap or Recess Wrap.

This gives your Ojo a 3 dimensional look. It is done by wrapping behind your stick. Turn Ojo over and work on backside wrapping in same manner as Front Wrap. Since part of this Back Wrap will be covered by the Front Wrap, make it a little wider than you wish to be visible from the front side.

Arrow Points.

Wrap one stick at a time (opposite ends of the same stick). Attach your yarn and wrap around stick 1; Bring your yarn across stick 1 and behind stick 2. Do not cross yarn behind sticks. Wrap up and around stick 3, behind stick 4 and back up to stick 1. Repeat this until you have 8 to 10 rounds. See Fig. 4..

Japanese Wind Ball
Baltimore Area Council

A favorite toy of Japanese children is a paper wind ball, which they make themselves. Try making your own, using colored paper to make it more attractive. When you are finished, even the slightest breeze will make your ball move merrily along

  • Make 3 paper disks about 4" in diameter, using fairly stiff paper.
  • Cut the 1" and 2" slots in disks

The center slots on Disks 1 and 3 are 2 inch

The edge slots on Disk 1 and 2 are 1 inch

  • Slide disk #2 into the center slot of #1.
  • Open it out, then fold #l and #2 together along the center slot of #l .
  • Slide them into one slot of #3.
  • Open them out.
  • The sections form your wind ball.

Now if you want your Cubs can play with them or
decorate them for tree ornaments!

Cookie Cutter Bird Treats
Trapper Trails Council


  • Mixing bowls,
  • measuring cups,
  • measuring spoons,
  • mixers-electric or manual,
  • rolling pin,
  • drinking straws, and
  • ribbon.
  • Ingredients:
  • 1 Cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 3 eggs, beaten,
  • 3 l/2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda,
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cream of tartar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, mixed birdseed


  • Cream the butter, then beat in the eggs.
  • Sift together the flour, baking soda, cream of tartar, and salt.
  • Gradually add the dry ingredients to the butter and egg mixture. 
  • When well mixed, cover and chill. 
  • Flour surface of cabinet top and roll out the dough to about a 1/4 in thickness.
  • Cut out shapes with the cookie cutters;
  • at the top of each cookie, make a hole with a drinking straw. 
  • Press in a coating of the birdseed. 
  • Preheat oven to 350 and bake for about 12 minutes.
  • When cookies are cool, insert a length of ribbon through each and tie.

Caroling Party
Sam Houston Area Council

The whole idea is to spread good cheer and holiday spirit to each of your Scouts' families by having the boys sing carols at each boy's house.  At each house have the parent provide a different refreshment.  For instance, the first house could provide hot cocoa.  The next house could provide cookies.  The next house could provide some finger sandwiches, and so on, until all of the boys' homes have been visited.

Christmas Around the World
Baltimore Area Council

These ornaments are copies of those used in countries around the world.


  • Use 10 squares cut from colorful wrapping paper.
  • Place 5 of them face down and apply glue to each square.
  • Lay a length of string, yarn or wrapping ribbon, connecting the squares and leaving some at each end.
  • Put glue on backs of other 5 squares and lay them one by one on top of the first 5.


These drum-shaped ornaments are made from a ribbon spool or cardboard roll piece with cardboard circles on top and bottom.

  • Cover with decorative wrapping paper.
  • Add cotton ball or ornament on bottom.



  • Darning Needle
  • Yarn
  • Pieces Of Soda Straw
  • Ball Fringe Tufts

Use a darning needle and yarn, join together pieces of soda straw and ball fringe tufts into pyramids, squares or other shapes.

Daruma Dolls from Japan
Baltimore Area Council

According to legend, Dharma, a 6th century Indian Buddhist, sat immobile and meditated for nine years. This resulted in a paralysis so severe that he lost the use of his arms and legs. There are stories that say he rolled all the way from India to Japan to spread his teachings.

These self-righting dolls would make a nice Christmas gift for little brother or sister, or for the Cubs to take to a children's hospital. They are decorated in dark blue and bright red; are made in pairs to keep each other company; and are regarded as the symbol of two happy people. Some are made in the form of masks representing goblins and foxes and are used by the farmers as scarecrows to protect their crops.


Place them on a flat surface, then touch them at the top of the cone and watch them roll and roll. Move the top in a slight circle and see what happens.

Paper MacheL Pinata
Baltimore Area Council

  • Follow basic directions for doing paper macheL.
  • For body, inflate a balloon. The size and shape will be determined by the type of animal or figure you are making. Two or three layers of macheL is good. Let dry.
  • Tape on additional balloons and cardboard pieces for head, legs, cars, wings, etc.
  • Cover entire Pinata with two layers of macheL. Let dry.

After the pinata is the desired shape and completely dry,

  • Cut a hole in the back to remove balloon and add wrapped candy or favors.
  • Fasten a cord to the top for hanging.

If desired, you can add a finishing touch of tissue paper curls which cover typical Mexican Pinatas.

  • Fold three lengthwise and fringe.
  • Turn strips wrong side out so they will fluff up.
  • Fold several strips together and cut all at once.
  • Wrap these around the pinata, overlapping each row as you glue it on.

Another Suggestion for a Pinata

Make a globe of the world and paint the names of the countries that have Scouting on it.

Hang the pinata up at a pack meeting and-
let the Dens go at it.

Sam Houston Area Council

The holidays are a time of laughter and good cheer, for gathering together and making memories that will last forever.  These holiday traditions will live from year to year.  Some outdoor activities that you and your den can do are:

  • Decorate an outside tree with homemade animal-friendly decorations, such as strings of popcorn, birdseed balls, and pinecone/peanut butter feeders.
  • Take a car or bus ride through neighborhoods gaily decorated with bright shining lights and lawn ornaments.
  • Stroll through the neighborhood singing holiday carols.
  • Take a walk in the woods gathering pinecones and other nature items to use to make holiday decorations and presents.  End each activity with a holiday party!

Water Glass Symphony
Trapper Trails

Items Needed:

  • 8 glasses of about the same size and shape,
  • teaspoons,  
  • water


  • Line up eight glasses.
  • Fill the first glass about 1/8th full of water for the high note, the second glass should be 1/4 full, the third glass should be 3/8ths full for the next note, and so on.
  • Each glass should sound like a note on the music scale (do, re, mi, fa, sol, la, ti, do).
  • You may need to tune your music scale (add or remove water with teaspoon) until each note rings true.
  • Use a metal teaspoon to gently tap out the scale and any other familiar melodies (Jingle Bells, Silent Night). Or, assign each glass a number or letter.
  • Conduct the symphony by calling out the number or letter, and letting each musician tap his glass.

Trapper Trails

Items Needed:

  • 1/2 gallon paper milk carton
  • 10" candle
  • 1 1/2 lb. paraffin
  • 3 trays of ice cubes
  • Crayon bits (optional)


  • Cut the top from the carton and rinse out any milk or juice.
  • Crack ice cubes into large pieces. Drain off any water and return to freezer.
  • Melt the paraffin in a double boiler over low heat. Do not melt wax over direct flame. Always have adult supervision while working with wax.
  • For color, add crayon bits to melting wax.
  • While the wax is melting, center candle in carton and surround with cracked ice.
  • Quickly pour the melted wax over the ice.
  • Let cool for half an hour, then cut off car-ton.

Trapper Trails

Items Needed:

  • Clear plastic soda bottle, cleaned
  • 3/8 inch satin ribbon
  • hole punch
  • ruler
  • scissors
  • craft knife
  • paint


  • Using the craft knife, an adult should cut 2 1/4" from the bottom of the bottle.
  • Punch ten holes, about 1" apart, 1/2" down from the edge of the dish.
  • Paint as desired.
  • When paint is dry, thread a 22" length of ribbon over and under through the holes, leaving a 2" tail at the beginning.
  • Tie ribbon ends together. Fill with favorite treats.

Christmas Cinnamon Ornaments
Trapper Trails

Items Needed:

  • 1 cup applesauce
  • 1 oz. powdered cinnamon
  • 1 oz. ground cloves
  • 1 oz. ground nutmeg
  • 1 oz ground ginger
  • cinnamon for cutting board.


  • Combine ingredients to make a stiff dough.
  • Roll out on board dusted with ground cinnamon.
  • Cut with cookie cutters of your choice.
  • Using a straw, put a hole in the top for string.
  • Lay out flat to dry.
  • Turn over every 12 hours until completely dry.

Sam Houston Area Council


  • Firm, fresh oranges or lemons,
  • whole dried cloves,
  • toothpick,
  • nylon net,
  • ribbons or pretty yarn 


  • Use the toothpick to poke holes in the orange skin
  • Insert a whole clove into each hole.  You can randomly place the cloves in the orange, as close together as you can or you can make a neat vertical or horizontal pattern. 
  • If you want to add a richer, spicier scent, roll the finished pomander in a mixture of cinnamon, allspice, and nutmeg. 
  • Now, set the pomander aside to dry for several weeks.
  • It will shrink and get hard (as the orange gets dehydrated). 
  • Wrap it in a square of nylon net and
  • Tie the ends with the ribbon. 
  • It's ready to hang in a closet or give as a gift.

Popcorn Wreath
Sam Houston Area Council


  • Cardboard base (a pizza box is perfect or a cake round),
  • lots of popped corn,
  • glue,
  • yarn,
  • ribbon, scissors


  • Cut the center of the cardboard out to create the wreath base. 
  • Punch a hole near the edge and tie a loop of yarn through it to be used for hanging later. 
  • Pour glue out on a recycled meat tray. 
  • Put the popped corn into a bowl, and
  • One piece at a time dip popcorn in the glue and stick onto the wreath base. 
  • Cover the base completely with the popcorn. 
  • Decorate with tiny yarn or ribbon bows,  glued on here and there.

Gumdrop Tree
Sam Houston Area Council

Materials:  Styrofoam cone, toothpicks, candy gumdrops

Directions: Place gumdrops on table.  Stick a toothpick into each gumdrop.  Press toothpicks into Styrofoam cone.  Cover the cone completely.  The ornaments are edible.

Stamped Christmas Wrapping Paper
Sam Houston Area Council


  • Pre-cut shaped sponges, or sponges you cut into shapes,
  • tempera paint
  • construction paper or white butcher paper,
  • paint tray, paper towels


  • Pour tempera paint over several layers of paper towels on tray to form an inkpad. 
  • Dip sponges into paint. 
  • Tamp onto paper. 
  • When dry, use as gift-wrap.

Christmas Bells
Sam Houston Area Council

Materials:  Paper cups, tin foil, ribbon, jingle bells

Directions: Cover cups with foil.  Punch a hole in the bottom of each and string a ribbon through the hole, securing with a knot.  Tie a jingle bell (or two) at the other end of the ribbon.  Hang from Christmas tree.

Holiday Smells From Far Away

Sam Houston Area Council

Materials:  Stamps, construction paper, medium grade sandpaper, holiday cookie cutter, pencil, scissors, ground cinnamon, glue, markers, envelope

Directions: Fold a. piece of construction paper in half to form a card.  Trace cookie cutter onto sandpaper and cut out shape.  Sprinkle cinnamon on the sandpaper, and rub in with your finger.  Shake off the excess spice.  Glue the cookie shapes on the front of the card.  Write your holiday message inside the card.  Mail to someone special.

Hanukkah Ideas
Viking Council


The holiday dates back 2200 years.  Jews lived in Palestine, then occupied by the Syrians.  Antiochus was the king of Syria.  He wanted the Jews to accept the religion of the Greeks.  Some did and some did not.  Those that did not formed a band of loyal Jews.  They were named the Maccabees.  Mattahhis was their father, and Judah Maccabbee was their leader.  After three years, the band captured Jerusalem, cleaned and repaired the Holy Temple.

They found a small cruse of oil to light the eternal light.  However, there was only enough for one day and they sent for more oil.  The small amount of oil lasted for eight days instead of one, until more oil was secured.  This was considered the miracle, although the victory of the small ban over the Syrian Army was also considered a miracle.

Hanukkah is celebrated the 25th day of Kislev in the Hebrew calendar.  It falls somewhere between Thanksgiving and New Years each year.

In homes, people decorate with paper products.  They light candles each day.  They start with one candle and the "shammus" which lights the other candles, and add one candle each night.  They sing songs, eat potato pancakes and Hanukkah cookies.  Also they exchange Hanukkah gifts and Hanukkah "gelt" (small amounts of money).  They play games with the "dreidle" or top.

Craft Ideas

Menorah  - piece of wood (oblong); bottle caps, wooden spools, ets., paint, glue.  Must have 9 holders, one either larger or elevated as the "Shammas.

Stained Glass Windows waxed paper, shapes of tissue paper (can also be done with Christmas colors and symbols).  Iron Hanukkah shapes between two pieces of wax paper.

Holiday cards (may also be done with Christmas symbols) dip holiday cookie cutters in paint and print on colored paper (can also use potato or vegetable print)

Caps On! Caps Off!  Clipper!

DesPlaines Valley Council


  • Wooden measuring (yard or meter) stick,
  • 5 wooden spring clothes pins,
  • wood glue (stronger), Glue gun (impatient boys),
  • paints and brushes


  • Glue one clothespin at each of the 6", 12", 18", 24", and 30" marks.  Use either wood glue or hot glue depending on your needs.  Body of pins should line up on the centerline of the stick.  Jaws should line up with numbers.
  • Paint a funny face on each pin.
  • Clip a baseball cap at each pin and hang on wall.

Less than $1.00 apiece.  Llocal merchants may donate the measuring sticks, so cost drops to 15 cents each.


This is very popular with boys because it is both practical (holds five baseball caps) and fanciful (chomping monster faces).  These can be very quick to make if no decorating is done.  Some boys will really get into painting and decorating the faces so allow time for it.  Be sure the pins are glued down so that jaws are at opposite end of stick from the hanging hole or the chomping monsters will be hidden by the caps when the stick is hung on a wall.  These make great craft sale items.

Pinecone Ornaments
Sam Houston Area Council

Materials: Pinecones, red, green, or white spray paint gold or silver paint, string or thread, paint brush

Directions: Put the pinecones on a sheet of newspaper.  Spray the cones on one side.  Allow them to dry, then spray the other side.  When dry, paint the tips in gold or silver and let dry.  If cones are "soft', sew a foot-long heavy thread through the bottom of each cone.  If they are wooden-like, tie a ribbon through the bottom spurs of each cone.  Now, you have ornaments for packages, a wreath, a Christmas tree, or to hang on a door with a big bow.

Christmas Tree Ornaments
Sam Houston Area Council

Ingredients: 4 cups flour, 1 cup salt, 1 1/2 cups water, paper clips, tempera paints, thread, clear plastic spray

Directions: Mix the flour, salt and water to make flour clay.  Rub your hands with flour and knead the mixture for at least five minutes, until thickened.  Mold and shape the clay into Christmas wreaths, trees, stars, or whatever you like.  For adding details, try using a toothpick to "etch" the clay.  Finished pieces should be no thicker than 1/2 inch and no bigger than 3 inches.  For a hanging hook, stick one end of a paper clip into the shape.  Cover a cookie sheet with foil, and place your clay shapes on it.  Bake in an oven at 350 degrees for about 12 to 20 minutes.  When done, your clay will be light brown in color.  When tapped with a fork, it will make a solid ringing sound.  Decorate your clay ornaments with paints.  When paint is dry, spray the ornaments with clear plastic coating.  Tie a thread through each paper clip and hang them on your tree.

Gift Tags
Sam Houston Area Council

Materials: Used greeting cards, scissors, thread or thin string, and a hole punch

Directions: Select pictures, designs or greetings that would make attractive gift tags (make sure there is no writing on the back).  Cut the tags into different shapes and sizes or make small folders.  Punch a hole in the corner of each tag.  Cut a 5" piece of string, loop it through the hole and knot.

Read a story or poem about snow
Northwest Suburban Council

There is something magical about snow, the way it blankets fields, and rests on tree branches; the way it softens a landscape, and quiets a city.

Some ideas are |

The Big Snow

Berta and Elmer Hader (story)

First Snow

Marie Louise Allen (poem)

It Fell in the City

Eve Merriam (poem)


Karla Kuskin (poem)

The Snowy Day

Ezra Jack Keats (story)

Stopping by Woods on m Snowy Evening

Robert Frost (poem}

When All the World Is Full of Snow

N.M. Bodecker (poem)

Make a Snow Gauge

Northwest Suburban Council

You can measure the amount of snowfall with a homemade gauge made from any container that you can mark off in inches or centimeters.  A simple but effective gauge can be made from the bottom half of a clear plastic soda bottle, marked with an indelible laundry marker on the outside.  Though less reliable because of the way snow drifts, you can also measure snowfall with a yardstick. Compare your findings with the forecasted amount

Put several gauges outdoors--near a tree, out in the open, on your front steps--and see if they all measure the same. Are you surprised?

Candy Menorah
St. Louis Area Council


  • Styrofoam pieces for base,
  • 9 peppermint sticks,
  • 9 candy kisses
  • Frosting


  • Cut a 1" square of foam and glue to center of foam base
  • Push four peppermint sticks into the foam to one side of the center. 
  • Push four peppermint sticks into the other side. 
  • Push the central peppermint stick into the center.
  • On the first day of Hanukkah, "light" the Shamash and the first "candle" on the right. 
  • To light the candles, dab some frosting onto the top of the candy stick and attach a candy kiss. 
  • Candles are lit from right to left. 
  • On the eighth day, the edible parts of the menorah may be eaten in celebration of the holiday.

Japanese Mizuhiki knots
Alice, Golden Empire Council

  • Japanese gifts are often wrapped in paper and then tied with a traditional bow, called mizuhiki | they are thin colored cords, and can even be found at craft stores.   
  • Here's how to make your own mizuhiki knot: 
  • Select eight cords, four of one color and four of another color. 
  • Make a loop about 6 inches from one end with four of the cords, making sure they lay flat.

LEAD Technologies Inc. V1.01

  • Now weave the cords of the other color in and out of the first loop as shown in the picture.

LEAD Technologies Inc. V1.01

  • Trim the ends near the knot evenly. 
  • Center the knot on the front of the box;
  • Now flip the entire box over, holding the mizuhiki in place. 
  • Tape the cords to the box where they overlap, then trim any extra. 
  • This looks great with traditional Japanese papers, plain fabric with a weave to it, or even brown paper!

More Pack & Den Activities
Alice, Golden Empire Council

Learn about Festivals of Light around the world

Explore how various cultures celebrate light | almost every culture has some celebration at the end of the year or to celebrate the New Year | many with lights.  One that fell on November 9 this year is Diwali, a Hindu festival honoring the once banished mythic hero Rama and his wife Sita | Lakshima, goddess of prosperity, is welcomed into homes decorated at the entrance with patterns made in rice flour, called rangoli.  Candles and rows of oil lamps are lit all five nights of the festival, giving thanks for blessings of the past year, and lighting the way for good fortune in the next.  One fun custom is drawing small footprints with rice flour and vermilion powder all over the house, indicating that Lakshima is coming.  Diwali is celebrated all over India | in some places, the fourth day is Annokoot, meaning Mountain of Food | statues of deities are given milk baths and offered huge trays of delicious sweets.

Invite pack families to choose a country and share how the Holidays are celebrated there.  There is lots of information, including recipes, music, crafts, etc. available on the internet, from teachers, or in books in the Children's section of the library | ask the librarian for help.

Check with local colleges or universities | if they have an International Student's organization, they could share holiday customs from around the world.

Go caroling through a neighborhood or at a convalescent hospital.  Then adjourn for Holiday cookies and hot chocolate.

Decorate small trees to share with shut-ins.  Each family or den gets a small artificial tree to decorate in some way | deliver along with simple fruit or breads | or just sing some carols as you deliver the trees.

Have each person bring a can of food as their "ticket" to the Pack Meeting.  The food can be given to a food bank.  Or you could even organize to fill a basket for a family with food for the Holidays.

Make photo-op cardboard cutouts for the Pack Meeting.  Trace or use an overhead projector to make large cardboard "murals" of a holiday scene from different countries.  Each family gets a mural to paint and display at the Pack Meeting.  Leave the faces blank so they can be cut out, making a hole for people to put their head into for a photo op. (Coloring books can be a great resource for simple pictures | and you can use an overhead projector to enlarge them-Alice) Families could also be ready to describe how the holidays are celebrated in their assigned, or chosen country.

Collect favorite books in good condition, or collect funds to buy some new ones | present them to a children's shelter or a school library.

Families, dens or the whole pack can adopt some grandparents for the Holidays, someone without family in the area  | invite them to your Pack meeting, have special small gifts for them | and maybe ask them to tell about their childhood Christmas.

Make a Pack calendar for 2008: Take photos of the boys doing activities throughout the year, or have them design a picture for each month.  Blank calendar pages are available for printout online | but to make this a really useful calendar, add the dates of special pack activities, such as Blue and Gold Dinner, Pinewood Derby, even den meetings | of course, this means you would have had to have a yearly planning meeting. If you aren't prepared to do it this year, remember to get an early start in 2008!

Materials found in Baloo's Bugle may be used by Scouters for Scouting activities provided that Baloo's Bugle and the original contributors are cited as the source of the material.

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