How to make Celery Print Marigolds & “Priya Dreams”

A Beautiful Book & Celery Print Marigolds!

After reading Meenal Patel’s “Priya Dreams of Marigolds & Masala” we decided to create Celery Print Marigolds that we turned into a pretty garland using string lights. I’m excited to walk you through how we made this incredible Celery Print Marigold art, so let’s get started…

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Summary of “Priya Dreams of Marigolds & Masala”

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“Priya Dreams of Marigolds & Masala” by Meenal Patel is a beautiful book about an Indian-American school-aged girl named Priya who lives in the United States. Her family is from Gujarat, India, so she loves hearing all about India from her Ba (Grandmother). She loves Ba’s stories about the spices, the sounds, the weather, the sights and the traditions as she helps her Ba make rotli every day.

One thing that helps her Ba feel at home is picking bright orange marigolds from the garden each day to hang over their doorway. In the winter, there are no marigolds to pick and Priya notices this. So she takes initiative during art at school to begin making paper marigolds. Once her classmates see what she’s doing and hear the reason why, they join in and help create a spectacular paper marigold garland for Ba.

cover of "Priya Dreams of Marigolds & Masala" with handwritten note form the author

This lovely book begins with a poem, “This House is on a Small Street in a Small City in the United States.” and ends with another similar poem, “Halfway Across the Globe is a House on a Small Street in a Small City in Gujarat, India”. These two poems bring together the two perspectives the author writes about in her note, how she felt different being an Indian-American growing up and how she learned as an adult how important is is to take pride in her entire identity. This book is her way of passing on that exemplary message to children.

Patel also offers a “Meanings, Definitions, Pronunciations” section to further the readers understanding, which is wonderful. My daughter and I truly enjoyed every aspect of this book and highly recommend it!

Thank You

Thank You to Meenal Patel @meenal_land for gifting us this book for review as part of Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2020. For more information on the Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2020 please see below.

How We Made Celery Print Marigolds…

making celery print marigolds with celery and orange paint on white paper

We tend to keep the activities as simple as possible around here. We’re not interested in complicated or costly. We are also all about fostering independence. For this activity we originally thought about trying our hand at the paper marigolds made in the story, then I had an idea to make celery heart prints. I cut the stalks off, applied paint to the remaining flower shaped stump and stamped it on the paper. We’ve done this in the past and its worked well, but for some reason I couldn’t seem to cut the angle right to make a complete print.

celery print marigolds next to open page of the book

As luck would have it using an individual stalk of celery to create the marigolds worked even better and was a really fun technique to use. Very simply, to make this celery print marigold art, my daughter and I each had one stalk of celery, we would dip it into the orange paint, gently stamp it on a paper towel to get rid of excess paint, then stamp it onto our paper starting from the inside working our way around in a circular fashion. You can see a quick video tutorial in our instagram post here.

Turning it into Garland…

hand punching a hole in celery printed marigold art

We enjoyed making quite a number of them in all different sizes. Once the celery print marigolds were dry we cut them out. At first we were going to string them with yarn to make the garland. But we had recently taken down the Christmas lights that we had hanging up in our homeschool room entrance and were missing them. So, we punched a hole in each celery printed marigold and pushed a white light through the hole. Then we hung the string of lit up marigolds in our doorway to admire! I honestly think its never coming down, its so bright and beautiful and brings us all a lot of joy.

Wait?!? Am I Supposed To Be Making One Too?

I highly recommend getting hands on and doing art projects with your child. If you’d rather not, thats okay too, but please do not correct anything they do. If you want the art to look a certain way – make your own.

lit up celery print marigold garland hanging in doorway of homeschool room

Especially if your child is little, its okay if it doesn’t turn out the way you imagined. Maybe its what they imagined. Also, its a process. They are learning. They will learn more through trial and error than if you correct them or do it for them. All they will learn if you “help” is that they didn’t do a good enough job on their own or they can’t do it; not exactly the message you want to give your kid. Am I right?!?

Believe me, I know it can be really challenging to let them make “mistakes”. Try doing the project along side them. It will allow you to focus on your own work, give them appropriate modeling of how to use the materials, and show them that you like art too! A lot of what I talk about in “What about the Sensory Mess?” applies to Art projects as well, you might wanna check it out! I love how each art has its own identity. I would suggest Celery Print Marigold Art if you’re looking for a pretty and unique art activity to connect with your child.

Materials We Used

  1. “Priya Dreams of Marigolds & Masala” book (from the library or buy it here)
  2. Cardstock paper
  3. Celery
  4. Orange paint
  5. A small bowl
  6. Paper towel (optional)
  7. White string lights
  8. Hole puncher
    Click HERE for Free Printable copy (Email Subscribers Only)

How to Make Celery Print Marigolds?

  1. Squirt some orange paint into a small bowl.
  2. Dip the celery stalk into the orange paint.
  3. If too much paint is on the celery stamp it lightly on a paper towel.
  4. Stamp the celery on the cardstock paper making a circular shape with the first 4 stamps.
  5. Dip the celery into the orange paint each time it runs out.
  6. Stamp the celery onto the cardstock paper going around in a circular motion stamping and dipping and stamping until the marigold is the size you like.
    *Remember flowers are all different and it will look more authentic if its not perfect.
  7. Allow time to dry.
  8. Once dry cut out each of the celery print marigolds.
  9. Punch a hole in each one.
  10. Push a lightbulb from the string light through the hole so the marigold is snug.
  11. Plug in the sting lights.
  12. Hang up your lit up marigold garland to enjoy!
    Click HERE for Free Printable copy (Email Subscribers Only)

Wait, There’s More…

Sample of “Communicating & Connecting FREE Bonus Printable.

I believe you can easily strengthen communication skills and foster independence all while playing and connecting with your child. To help you do this; I’ve created a FREE printable for each activity called, “Communicating & Connecting”.

It will give you a list of suggestions I’ve found very helpful as a Mom & as a special education teacher; to help you build lifelong skills. Please don’t feel obligated to do everything on the list (but if you do, you’re a rockstar 😉 ).

As a Thank You for subscribing; this is a special FREEBIE for our Email Subscribers Only. 🙂 Click here if you’ve already subscribed. Otherwise, Sign Up below to get the password & access to our entire FREE Printables Library today! 😉

Multicultural Children’s Book Day Information…

multicultural children's book day poster

Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2020 (1/31/20) is in its 7th year! This non-profit children’s literacy initiative was founded by Valarie Budayr and Mia Wenjen; two diverse book-loving moms who saw a need to shine the spotlight on all of the multicultural books and authors on the market while also working to get those book into the hands of young readers and educators.  

Seven years in, MCBD’s mission is to raise awareness of the ongoing need to include kids’ books that celebrate diversity in homes and school bookshelves continues.

MCBD 2020 is honored to have the following Medallion Sponsors on board

Super Platinum

Make A Way Media/ Deirdre “DeeDee” Cummings, 


Language Lizard, Pack-N-Go Girls


Audrey Press, Lerner Publishing Group, KidLit TV, ABDO BOOKS : A Family of Educational Publishers, PragmaticMom & Sumo Jo, Candlewick Press,


 Author Charlotte Riggle, Capstone Publishing, Guba Publishing, Melissa Munro Boyd & B is for Breathe,


Author Carole P. Roman, Snowflake Stories/Jill Barletti, Vivian Kirkfield & Making Their Voices Heard. Barnes Brothers BooksTimTimTom, Wisdom Tales Press, Lee & Low Books,  Charlesbridge Publishing, Barefoot Books Talegari Tales

Author Sponsor Link Cloud

Jerry Craft, A.R. Bey and Adventures in Boogieland, Eugina Chu & Brandon goes to Beijing, Kenneth Braswell & Fathers Incorporated, Maritza M. Mejia & Luz del mes_Mejia, Kathleen Burkinshaw & The Last Cherry Blossom, SISSY GOES TINY by Rebecca Flansburg and B.A. Norrgard, Josh Funk and HOW TO CODE A ROLLERCOASTER, Maya/Neel Adventures with Culture GrooveLauren Ranalli, The Little Green Monster: Cancer Magic! By Dr. Sharon Chappell, Phe Lang and Me On The Page, Afsaneh Moradian and Jamie is Jamie, Valerie Williams-Sanchez and Valorena Publishing, TUMBLE CREEK PRESS, Nancy Tupper Ling,Author Gwen Jackson, Angeliki Pedersen & The Secrets Hidden Beneath the Palm Tree, Author Kimberly Gordon Biddle, BEST #OWNVOICES CHILDREN’S BOOKS: My Favorite Diversity Books for Kids Ages 1-12 by Mia Wenjen, Susan Schaefer Bernardo & Illustrator Courtenay Fletcher (Founders of Inner Flower Child Books),

Ann Morris & Do It Again!/¡Otra Vez!, Janet Balletta and Mermaids on a Mission to Save the Ocean, Evelyn Sanchez-Toledo & Bruna Bailando por el Mundo\ Dancing Around the World, Shoumi Sen & From The Toddler Diaries, Sarah Jamila Stevenson, Tonya Duncan and the Sophie Washington Book Series, Teresa Robeson  & The Queen of Physics, Nadishka Aloysius and Roo The Little Red TukTuk, Girlfriends Book Club Baltimore & Stories by the Girlfriends Book Club, Finding My Way Books, Diana Huang & Intrepids, Five Enchanted Mermaids, Elizabeth Godley and Ribbon’s Traveling Castle, Anna Olswanger and Greenhorn, Danielle Wallace & My Big Brother Troy, Jocelyn Francisco and Little Yellow Jeepney, Mariana Llanos & Kutu, the Tiny Inca Princess/La Ñusta Diminuta, Sara Arnold & The Big Buna Bash, Roddie Simmons & Race 2 Rio, DuEwa Frazier & Alice’s Musical Debut, Veronica Appleton & the Journey to Appleville book series  Green Kids Club, Inc.

We’d like to also give a shout-out to MCBD’s impressive CoHost Team who not only hosts the book review link-up on celebration day, but who also works tirelessly to spread the word of this event. View our CoHosts HERE.

Co-Hosts and Global Co-Hosts

A Crafty Arab, Afsaneh Moradian, Agatha Rodi Books, All Done Monkey, Barefoot Mommy, Bethany Edward & Biracial Bookworms, Michelle Goetzl & Books My Kids Read, Crafty Moms Share, Colours of Us, Discovering the World Through My Son’s Eyes, Educators Spin on it, Shauna Hibbitts-creator of eNannylink, Growing Book by Book, Here Wee Read, Joel Leonidas & Descendant of Poseidon Reads {Philippines}, Imagination Soup, Kid World Citizen, Kristi’s Book Nook, The Logonauts, Mama Smiles, Miss Panda Chinese, Multicultural Kid Blogs, Serge Smagarinsky {Australia}, Shoumi Sen, Jennifer Brunk & Spanish Playground, Katie Meadows and Youth Lit Reviews

FREE RESOURCES from Multicultural Children’s Book Day

TWITTER PARTY! Register here!

Hashtag: Don’t forget to connect with us on social media and be sure and look for/use our official hashtag #ReadYourWorld.

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