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  • Felice Cohen

Saving Space This Holiday

When I was eight, I entered a Menorah making contest. I spent hours in

pencils

I hadn’t thought of that menorah until this past week when my sister sent me a picture of a menorah my niece Paige created out of clay, and then my friend Candice emailed

paige's menorah

candance menorah

“Are you lighting the menorah tonight with your daughter?” I asked. “No. I’m wary of candles with a two-year-old.” “What about if you draw a menorah and then each night add a ‘flame’ by coloring it with a yellow crayon,” I said. “I love it,” she said.

Now my juices were flowing.

That evening, on the first night of Hanukah, I realized I didn’t have a menorah. Of course the ritual is geared more to children, along with the presents, but as I ripped off the last paper towel, I had an idea. I took out a pair of scissors and cut the empty paper towel roll into eight little rings and put the remaining part, the tallest part, the shamash, in the center of a tray and lined the others around it. Then I took a piece of orange tissue paper, ripped off a little section and stuffed it into one of the towel rings.

felice menorah FINAL

Sure the Maccabees may not have appreciated the tissue paper (as the whole point of Hanukah was the oil lasting for eight days), but I certainly did. Each night I may not be “lighting” candles, but I am certainly delighted by my own handy work. The best part is that when the holiday is over, I won’t have to pack it up in a box marked “Hanukah” or “Holidays” and store it someplace. I will just toss it, knowing next year I will make a different one, as well as the year after that. Not only is my new ritual fun, but it’s a space saver too.

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