Do you remember scratch and sniff books? I don’t know how those ever went out of style. What’s better than opening a book and experiencing a deeper part of the story through scent. My very favorite book growing up was Little Bunny Follows His Nose. It’s about a bunny who leaves home to see what’s out in the world. Pine trees, peaches, strawberry jam, and dill pickle scents leap off the page as the bunny meets new friends and learns what delightful scents he finds when he “follows his nose.” Hearing the story and being able to experience what the little rabbit was seeing and smelling was the coolest gift to a little kid.
When I came home from the hospital after having my first baby, my Mom gave me a new copy of the book, and I’ve been reading it to all three of my kids since. Now, my oldest is reading it too! Books are such a gift, aren’t they? Your little ones will love burying their noses in the pages of Little Bunny Follows His Nose and sniffing their way through his adventures.
To bring the pages of this story even closer for my kids to experience, we brought one of the scratch and sniff scents to life. I loved the part of the story most where the bunny smells dill pickles being made in the kitchen of a new friend. Dill and garlic hitting a hot canning jar is still one of my very favorite smells.
Wanting the kids to have more involvement than the full canning process allows, we made quick dill pickles instead. They are easy and fun — the perfect way to bring the story to life!
Quick Refrigerator Dill Pickles:
(makes 3 pint jars)
2 pounds of pickling cucumbers or persian cucumbers
1 1/2 cups white vinegar or apple cider vinegar
1 1/2 cups water
6 sprigs of dill
3 Tbsp sugar
1 1/2 Tbsp. salt
4 garlic cloves, diced
1 tsp. mustard seeds
1 tsp. coriander seeds
3 clean pint jars with lids
In a bowl, combine the vinegar, water, sugar, and salt. Mix until the sugar and salt are dissolved. Set out the jars and divide the dill sprigs, garlic cloves, mustard seeds, and coriander between the three jars. Slice the cucumbers in half then half again, making quarters. Add the cucumbers to the jars, facing the seeds outward and the skin toward the middle (they look prettier that way!). Pack as many as you can in without forcing them. Pour the vinegar liquid in the jars Put on the lids and refrigerate for at least a day, but they are best after a few days. Enjoy!
Bonnie Rush enjoys a full life in San Diego with the man of her dreams and three kiddos. She does a lot of DIY home projects, gardens, and homeschools but enjoys the part most where she gets to learn and experience new things with her little ones. You can find her writing and photography at A Golden Afternoon.9