Sunday, 16 December 2012

A hobbit hole

My Scrooge hat has been tightly on for a couple of months now. Christmas is on it's way and I want to hide in a cave or emigrate to someplace far, far away.

There is so much about the way we celebrate this festival that I dislike. The greed we inspire in our children; the creation of the fictional character Santa Claus that tries to replace Christ Jesus; the placing of the pagan tree symbol at the heart of our home.

We will celebrate the Christ Mass. We will feast on fine food and enjoy fine drinks. We have purchased presents and begun to make our plans but I've had no sense of urgency to buy a tree.

We've been getting excited about the release of The Hobbit this month. My wife has, yet again, surprised me by her enthusiasm. She started reading the book to our seven year old at bedtime and it prompted me to suggest we replace the traditional fir tree with a hobbit hole.

Only our seven year old thought that was a good idea!

Today she asked me, again, when we were going to make the hobbit hole. Why did I open my mouth?

I had no idea how to make a hobbit hole. I think my original image was of a large cardboard box, painted black on the inside and green on the outside. Essentially a cave that we could place presents in. It didn't seem quite enough. So I looked up a few photos on Google and got some inspiration. If you want to make one yourself, it turned out to be quite simple...

First: locate a large cardboard box. Draw a curved roof and using a plate and round CD case, draw a door and window...

Make sure child is not inside box when you cut out the door and window...

Leave a strip of cardboard uncut to make an easy hinge on the door and window.

Cut down the corners and then across thefront and back (I used the cut out from the front as a template for the back...)

Use parcel tape to stick down the sides of the box to make a roof. (I found I had to bend the cardboard first) Disco ball is optional ;)

Find a green blanket or sheet to use as a grass roof. We cut out some spare cardboard to put rims round the door and window and my wife had a grass stencil we used at the bottom. Stroke grass while repeating in a Gollum like voice... My precious...

I'll probably end up buying a tree tomorrow but at least seven year old has her very own hobbit hole.