Yesterday we made the transition from Thanksgiving to Christmas. We took down the turkeys and pilgrims and finally threw away the last of the pumpkins; we put up the tree, strung up the lights, and pulled out the advent calendar I made last year.
The excitement and joy of the season is rushing upon my kids, and they are bursting with even more energy than usual (is that even possible?!). As their little hands reached into the boxes to pull out ornaments and nativities, I caught myself sounding exactly like my mom: "Don't grab . . . wait for me to hand you something. Just wait your turn."
This year, I'm especially enjoying this banner Mike and I made from a set of ornaments I was given to review.
The ornaments have the Biblical names of Jesus Christ imprinted on them: Prince of Peace, King of Kings, Shepherd, etc. Each star is made from tin (or some other lightweight metal) with a pewter finish. I was expecting them to be heavier, but the lighter weight actually makes them much more versatile. (You could use them in so many other ways besides a banner: as gift tags, on a wreath, on a little tree, etc.)
At first, I was just going to hang them on our tree, but I was afraid they would get lost amid the beaded candy canes, salt dough stars, and other ornaments my kids insist on hanging up. Plus, I think they're really more powerful as a set. I love seeing so many of Christ's names together.
So I decided to make a banner.
Here's how I made it (with a lot of the grunt work being done by Mike):
Biblical Names of Christ Ornament set (can be purchased online here)
Two contrasting colors of one-inch ribbon
Cranberries (or any kind of trimming)
Step One: Measure the length of the area you want the banner to hang from. Cut the floral wire two feet longer than desired length to account for hanging and attaching the ornaments.
Step Two: Attach the ornaments by stringing the wire through the hole and then twisting the wire one or two times around the ornament so it won't slide or move.
Step Three: Temporarily string up the wire (with attached ornaments) and start twisting one-inch wide ribbon around it.
Step Four: Take the contrasting ribbon and twist it around the wire, going the opposite direction as the first ribbon.
Step Five: Poke short cranberry branches into the ribbon and attach with more floral wire.
Step Six: Hang up and enjoy the whole Christmas season. (How did we attach it? Um, see those stacks of books? Yeah, they're on top of the wire. Really professional, I know.)
If you walked into my living room right now, you would see our Christmas tree, eight different nativity sets, and this banner. We are not anti-Santa, reindeer, snowmen, etc., but I love that in this room, which is the heart of our home, the focus is clearly on the Savior. This new set of ornaments only adds to this theme, and I'm grateful for the tone they help set in our home. The set includes twelve ornaments with a scripture listed to go along with each one.
It's true that my kids are probably not going to look at this banner and think about how it reminds them of the Savior, but if I point to one of the stars and say, "Look boys, one of Christ's other names is Emmanuel. Let's read a scripture about that . . . " then their understanding and knowledge is increased and they understand a little more why our family loves Christmas so much.
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If you are interested in this ornament set, it can be purchased by clicking on this link: Biblical Names of Christ Ornament Set
(Just fyi, this is the only site online that carries these ornaments this season.)