Today is Winter Solstice… the shortest day of the year and tonight will be the longest night. It is a time to celebrate and mark the year by inviting the light back into our lives. In all this darkness, it is a time to reflect inwardly and ask that light and warmth grow our hearts too.
In honor of Winter Solstice, we made a winter lantern. We collected ‘nature bits’ that remind us of winter. As we worked, we talked about the things we love about this time of year and the things we look forward to as the sun returns. My children feel magical when they are holding a lantern… it signifies the capturing and nurturing of light… a power they know they posses inside. I love to see the excitement it brings.
To make a lantern like ours, you will need…
A small balloon
Tissue paper (we chose white for the winter snow)
Tear the tissue paper into small strips.
Squeeze glue into a recycled dish (we used an old yogurt tub and put it in the recycling bin when we were done with it).
Dilute the glue with a little water (you want the glue/water mix to be the consistency of light cream).
Dip a tissue paper strip into the glue and wrap it around the round end of your balloon.
Stick your winter ‘nature bits’ to your tissue papered balloon and cover with another layer of gluey tissue paper. This layer seals your ‘nature bits’ into your lantern.
Set your gluey tissue papered balloon in the sun to dry. As it dries, the glue hardens, making the tissue paper firm and sturdy.
When the tissue paper is completely dry, pop the balloon with a pin. Once again, T found this the BEST! He is our official ‘balloon popper’!
Cut a length of wire, about 20 inches long, for your lantern’s handle. Poke one end through one side of the tissue paper and twist to fix in place. Repeat with the other side.
Voila! You have a delightful winter lantern.
Before dinner, we lit our lantern. T and K took turns holding it as we sang our favorite Christmas carols and I could see the light in their hearts grow with each second that passed. Light and warmth is now kindled within us for us to nurture throughout the year ahead.
I want to end this entry by taking you to this beautiful winter lantern made my Luciana and her family.
Blessings and magic.