Penguins get two days in the spotlight. Today January 20 is Penguin Awareness Day and April 25 is World Penguin Day. Okay so there is also African Penguin Awareness Day on 17 October as well….but why not focus on penguins whenever you can? They deserve it and their distinctive silhouette makes them a fabulous motif for gift wrapping and tags.
The penguin is an intriguing animal. Soooo many fun facts from Mental Floss who share that penguins can’t fly, that all 17 species of penguins are found exclusively in the Southern Hemisphere and that despite their lack of visible ears, penguins have excellent hearing and rely on distinct calls to identify their mates when returning to the crowded breeding grounds. And here’s something I can relate to….in some penguin species, it is the male penguin which incubates the eggs while females leave to hunt for weeks at a time. Because of this, pudgy males—with enough fat storage to survive weeks without eating—are most desirable.
In the lead up to Valentine’s Day, I am interested in romance. We humans use flowers and chocolates to woo that special mate. Penguins give rock – not just any rocks mind you. Male Gentoo penguins rifle through piles of pebbles to find the smoothest, most perfect ones. He then presents it to his intended companion. If she approves, she puts the stone in her nest and… well …you can guess what happens then. Pebbles are so important to the penguins that males often fight over the best ones.
So on Penguin Awareness Day we are rocking a penguin look. I have gone for a cute little penguin pattern in pink to wrap my jar of chocolate and raspberry dipping sauce – thought about a jar of rocks but that was taking it too far. I do recommend having a go at wrapping jars and cylinders because you will feel awfully proud of yourself and your precision when you have mastered the art. The paper I used didn’t love being folded and pleated as much as I had hoped,so there are some tiny crease marks but I can cope with that and LEARNING I will pick different paper next time. I finished the gift off with a raspberry coloured grosgrain stitched pink bow.