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The Making of The Candy Cane Coffin

20 December 2013

It seems like my life as a parent has inadvertently turned into my life as an amateur costume designer.

Like the time I had to build a Lego man’s head for my son. Or when I helped my kids make zombie costumes for Halloween. And my most recent task of sewing up a sexy nurse costume (for myself) in 45 minutes.

Well, for my next adventure… I had to help my 10 year old son make a candy cane costume for his end-of-year school play!

Candy Cane Craft

He drew up some ideas, which were fantastic.

I helped him through some factors that we had to take into consideration. For example, we had to make sure it wasn’t too top-heavy, that he could wear it comfortably for 10 minutes, that he could run in it, that he could breathe in it, that it would stay rigid and upright etc.

Candy Cane Craft

I don’t know about you, but 10 year old boys with cutting tools make me nervous.

I showed him how to use a cutting knife, how to be safe with it, and how NOT to cut with it… then I sat back to let him work out the rest.

I believe in letting kids just get on with the task on hand, without hovering over them like pain in the ass.

I held my breath throughout his cutting process and almost passed out from the stress. Can you say JITTERY and JUMPY?!?

Candy Cane Craft

But… look at our two beautiful and identical J pieces!

Candy Cane Craft

Then I taught him how to use a hot glue gun.

Guns and glue. There were so many ways this could go wrong.

Candy Cane Craft

But again I sat back.

And I watched him glue his fingers together. Of course!

Candy Cane Craft

We moulded the sides and glued everything together.

As it took shape, I was a little horrified that our candy cane looked like a strange coffin.

Candy Cane Craft

I cut up a canvas shopping bag and stuck the handles on the inside to act as shoulder straps.

We cut arm holes and lastly a face hole.

Oh gosh, I was so proud of our creation. Even though it looked like… a coffin.

candy Cane

But, once it was painted, it looked a lot less like a coffin, thankfully.

The kid’s play was a Christmas adaptation of “The Gingerbread Man”, where my son had to run around in costume shouting “Run, run as fast as you can! You can’t catch me I’m the CANDY CANE MAN!!”

Oh boy, I had a strange mixture of pride and embarrassment as I watched him on stage.

In my primary school days, I was so shy and awkward that I would have been paralysed by embarrassment and UTTERLY MORTIFIED if my parents made me a candy cane costume and I had to be on stage, wearing it in front of people!!

But my son seemed to have NO problems with being on stage, wearing an oversized candy cane, being like a hyperactive confectionery, and speaking in a false, high pitched voice. I guess the difference is that it was all HIS idea…

So I guess I’m very pleased and proud that I have such a cool kid.