This year, we made a couple of Christmas crafts out of natural materials that went well. The first craft we did was to make lemon pomanders. I’ve seen some where people made them much fancier than ours and ended up with beautiful decorations for their tree, but we just kept ours simple. First we poked the lemons with toothpicks to make holes. Then we stuck whole cloves into the holes. Their smell has been heavenly!
We also made a simple garland out of dried oranges and apple slices by using an embroidery needle to string a red ribbon through the dried fruits and tying them on with a simple knot (do the knot before you move on to the next fruit or else the fruit will slide all over and you’ll have to go back and restring them all so that you can tie knots – I say this from experience).
To dry the fruits, first cut them in 1/4” slices. Then lay the slices out on a cake cooling rack or cookie sheet, so that they are not touching each other (we actually put ours on a cooling rack and then put the cooling rack on to a jelly roll pan, just to catch any juice drips). Cook the fruit slices on the lowest temperature your oven will go to (mine went down to 170 degrees F). Cook the fruit slices until you reach the desired texture, flipping and rotating the slices at least once every hour. We cooked our orange slices for about 4 hours and our apple slices for about 10. You can also dry the fruit by hanging them on thread or skewers and letting them air dry for several days. I sprinkled the apple slices with cinnamon, just to give them a better smell. It also so happens that they taste good this way! I had not planned on serving them, but Gohan and Mr. Mo grabbed them before I could tell them they were meant for decorations. Also, some people like to core their apples before drying them. I wanted the apple stars to show, but that meant that some of the apple could not be used.
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