Woodland Treasure

Today, my kids made Nativity scenes with their friends, at a homeschool club they attend together. We had gathered all sorts of natural materials for the occasion.

The Holy Baby was rocks or twigs. Mary and Joseph were cutout leaves. The angels sported fungus wings, beautiful ivory and sea-green-striped fungus wings. The trough was grass, wilted and golden in its cold-weather collapse.

I wish I had a camera to take pictures, but I didn’t. We left the scenes on location. And when they’re done bringing joy, we can return them to the woods, no environmental impact.

Wouldn’t it be grand if every kid’s club, every school (home or otherwise) would ditch the plastic, and paper, and vinyl, and foam, and so on, and so on materials?

This would be a greater challenge for city schools, but still; maybe they could ditch the take-home projects and concentrate on reusable materials. Digital photos posted on classroom blogs could serve as a lasting testament and communication to parents.

Just think of the creativity that would be required in hunting-gathering. Just think of the learning those little fingers could take in, the appreciation those little eyes could develop… and, perhaps, an honor for the beauty and complexity of creation.

“Indeed these are the mere edges of His ways, and how small a whisper we hear of Him!” Job 26:14

Yarrow photo by Sonia.


Blogger Moni said...

Good morning Laura,
I love this blog! Thank you for setting it up. I particularly liked this post because it is something that my kids and I have done before. We created a winterland scene in a pieplate and used powdered sugar to create snow. It makes for a very natural decoration and lasts, with a bit of water for the fungus, through the holidays.
In the past I have created "nativity scenes" using special items from my past, for example - a name tag from a pet who passed away. A piece of my horses mane, a special box given to me by my grandmother, any item, that I don't get to appreciate and reminds me of someone or sometime that is very special. It may not be conventional, but it is also using things that I already own.

11:30 AM  
Blogger L.L. Barkat said...

Moni... sounds lovely... and the powdered sugar would surely be popular with the ants! :)

I like the idea of using personal sentimental items too... the Nativity is, after all, not just about His birth, but our birth into his life.

3:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Laura -- Wish I could see those little natural nativities. What a wonderful idea.

I continue to be very conscientious of my consumption. Lately, I've found myself disappointed when I can't recycle something. I still need to work reducing my used of paper towels and zip lock baggies. They're so handy. Any suggestions?

3:15 PM  
Blogger L.L. Barkat said...

Charity... I use glass containers instead of baggies (I save salsa jars, etc.) If it's for transport, I resort to small plastic containers I've saved.

Paper towels? I use baby washcloths. They're soft and light, so they are easy to clean and they dry quickly. Also, we've started making cloth napkins from old cotton shirts. It's been fun and creative!

3:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great ideas, both. The "reused" containers idea is one I've been experimenting with. I've been taking slices of bread to work to make toast in a square plastic container.

The baby wash cloths and homemade napkins are inspired. I was thinking about making some reusable cloth produce bags out of some old tea towels made of the thinnest cotton ever. Tried anything like this?

7:09 AM  
Blogger L.L. Barkat said...

Charity... tell me about those produce bags... do you mean for storing produce in the fridge? As far as plastic goes, I have to say that even though I use old containers, I'm trying to get away from plastic altogether. (maybe a future post on this! :)

11:17 AM  
Blogger Erin said...

This is awesome! Very chic too- Martha Stewart will be stealing this idea, I'm just sure of it.

Thank you for visiting my blog the other day. I've seen you around in various comments sections and have never had a chance to stop by here. Now I'm kicking myself. You've got some great ideas and creativity that I totally appreciate.

I'll be back... :)

11:07 AM  
Blogger L.L. Barkat said...

Erin... yes, I'm glad you came here too... especially since you homeschool... we can trade ideas! :)

1:00 PM  

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