Friday, December 20, 2013

Holiday Home Tour

Thanks to Jen on the Edge for inviting us to participate in the Holiday Home Tour.  This is my first time, so I'm a bit nervous.  Here goes...

Welcome to the Common Household holiday tour.  As you come down the front walk, you will see our stunning lopsided light display, which consists of one net of blue lights, one string of white lights, and our wood gingerbread man, home-crafted by my husband's colleague.  Since I am the only one in the household with the interest and energy for putting up lights, this is the light display we get.  It is now too cold and snowy to put out any more lights.

But do not be so dazzled that you miss the tree limb hanging low over the front walk.  The Tree Man never came last week, claiming it was too cold for his truck to start (!).   If you are tall, watch your noggin.

His smile looks a bit lopsided (just like
 this year's lights) because one piece
of his smile fell off. Nevertheless, he has
withstood the winter elements quite well.

Now that you are in out of the cold, please, come in the living room and take a close look at our Advent/Hanukkah paper chain.

We have used this in lieu of an Advent calendar since around 2003, saving the chain from the previous year and adding to it each year.  I am guessing that the chain is currently about 60 feet long.

It currently reaches about 2/3 of the way around the living room.

To make the links, we use scraps of wrapping paper.  On the plain side, we write various family activities, such as "Eat potato latkes" or "Read the Christmas story in Luke" or "give a gift to someone" or "pray to God."  During Hanukkah and Advent, after we do one of those activities, we add that link to the chain. 
This is the first year we get to add the link that
 says "make a gingerbread house."
This year I decided to also put up some of our origami ornaments.  Several years ago, my son was making new origami every day.  I decided to sew a loop of thread in some of his creations so that I could hang them up.  Since we don't usually have a Christmas tree, I just hang the ornaments from the curtains.

He made stars with various numbers of points and in various colors.  Each star is made out of one piece of paper, folded, but never cut or taped or glued.

My favorites, among his origami creations, were the geometric shapes.  These were often made out of several pieces of paper, but still only folded, not cut or glued.  I did apply some glue to the outside so that they would stay together when they were hanging.

Let's move into the dining room, and take a look at what's on the table - from right to left, a gingerbread house, gingerbread sleigh, and gingerbread lab equipment.  There are a few more photos of these at my previous post.

I also love Christmas and Hanukkah cards, and put them out, unless we need to actually use the dining room table for, say, dining.

And now our holiday home tour will take a step, not into another room, but back in time, to the end of November, when we celebrated Hanukkah.  This means getting out our hanukkiah (menorah), our felt hanukkiah, and some dreidels.

And that is the end of the Common Household holiday home tour.  To see the rest of the tour, go here.  To read my hope for this Christmas holiday, go here.  Merry Christmas!


Jen on the Edge said...

Best. Paper chain. EVER.

Regarding the origami ornaments, have you ever seen photos of the big tree at the American Museum of Natural History in NYC? It's covered in hundreds of origami animal ornaments and it's probably one of the most amazing trees I've ever seen.

Thank you for sharing your home with us.

~zandra~ said...

Love the origami ornaments! What a great way to save artwork :)

Sarah said...

That is an awesome paper chain! Love the origami, too. Pretty house :)

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

So cool about the paper chain. And the ornaments on the curtains! Festive in your unique way.

Molly Fulton said...

Love your Advent/Hanukkah chain and the way you've honored your interfaith family.

smalltownme said...

You have hit it out of the ballpark with that chain. Amazing idea.

Patience_Crabstick said...

Another fan of the paper chain here! What a great idea. I like the origami shapes too.

Susan said...

I have never seen the paper chains made with wishes - live that. the origami is so inspiring. Just lovely.

Karen (formerly kcinnova) said...

Gingerbread all the way! And, WOW, sixty feet of chain!! Really, that is amazing. How do you keep it from getting tangled and mangled in storage?

Kim Kasch said...

I love the paper chain...and advent calendars are one of my favs!

Thanks for sharing :D

The Crislers said...

Your family is so creative! I love the origami, and paper chain, and the gingerbread man missing part of his face, which may not have anything to do with your creativity, but I still love it.