Luminaries for Christmas

luminaries 2 Is there anything better than a Christmas craft that the kids help with, or in today's case, do completely on their own?! There is a distinctive charm in a hand-made decoration that the kids have excitedly put together themselves. They will love the fact that the very object they use to make hand puppets from or carry their little toys in is the star of the show. And of course, since we're utilizing paper lunch bags, what's not to love about the price tag, right?

Luminaries . . . such a classic Christmas decoration. The delicate light that shines through the paper gives off a warm, soft glow, doesn't it? Historically, there have been some very elaborate luminary displays:

Jemez State Monument, New Mexico

mission church luminary

 Typical display in Albuquerque, New Mexico

albuquerque nm luminary

 Desert Botanical Gardens, Phoenix, Arizona

desert botanical garden luminary

And, we can create simple, less elaborate displays in our own homes! Here's what you'll need:

  • Brown (or white) paper lunch bags
  • Red paper lunch bags
  • Pinking shears
  • Star-shaped hole punch
  • Sand
  • LED candles or glass votives

Super simple to make:

  1. Cut the red paper bags in half using pinking shears.
  2. Punch star-shaped holes with your hole punch about an inch from the top of the red bag.
  3. Trim the top of the brown or white paper bags with the pinking shears, and set inside of the red bag.
  4. Fill with sand about half way up the red bag, and wedge your LED candle or glass votive into the sand. That's it!


Photo courtesy:  Mantle, Jemez State Monument, Albuquerque, Phoenix


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