How to: Photograph Holiday Light Displays

by Chris Gardner

On Friday, I'm headed to the infamous Dyker Heights Light Display in Brooklyn, and will be taking my new Nikon D90 in tow.

But, no matter how carried away these holidaysters get - one Clark Griswold-disciple reportedly pays more than $5,000 in electricity each season - there's still a whole lotta black, and very little light, making for some tough shutterbugging.

Thankfully, plenty of master photographers have already thought through the...

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LED Motherboard Menorah.

by Chris Gardner

battery operated menorah, eco-friendly menorah, green menorah, kid-friendly menorah, led lit menorah, menorah, LED motherboard menorah, roni kabessa, green kids, eco kids, green hanukkah, menorahs

How fascinating..."A group of Israeli environmentalists has launched an Internet campaign encouraging Jews around the world to light at least one fewer candle this Hannukah.

The effort, aimed at curbing climate-altering greenhouse gas emissions, has been criticized by some Jewish leaders, who say the candles play a sacred role in the Hanukkah observance.

The founders of the Green Hanukkia campaign say each candle burning all the way down...

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Holiday How-To: Christmas Light Boxes.

by Chris Gardner


With a computer, a cardboard box, a clear surface, and a set of string lights, you can make a light box to illuminate your cozy holiday evenings with some peace and good will.

Instructable-r CreativeMan says "Having made some of these earlier, I decided to add a few more for the Christmas season.  These light boxes, or signs are easy to make, very low cost (the only thing I have to buy is the lights).  Lights used are mini-incandescent lamps...

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Alexander Girard Nativity Set.

by Chris Gardner


The new Curbly "Make It! Mid-Century Modern" publication features a fun how-to to create Alexander Girard-inspired wooden characters. Since it's the holidays, go grab a copy, and then apply the technique to something a little more seasonal, like this Nativity Set by Girard. "It's a new design based on a Girard illustration that hangs in his son’s house and in homage to man who apparently amassed a huge collection of nativities in his later years...The set has 13  solid maple (and non-toxic) pieces, ranging from 1-inch to 7.75-inch tall, along with an 11.75-inch stable and a special reusable storage box."

I know what I'm doing this four-day weekend.

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Let the Holiday Posts Begin!

by Chris Gardner

Friends, it is November 2nd, Halloween is over, and it's time to begin the wintertide holiday festivities.

Half of you reading this will say, "Duh, Chris, my tree's/menorah's been up for weeks, and my shopping was done months ago, and Bing's on the old hi-fi right now!" And the other half will say, "Are you kidding me?! Just because the corporations say its time to start selling doesn't mean it's December already...Quit being a slave to...

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Free Paper Snowflake Templates

by Chris Gardner

created at: 03/29/2013

Dig on some free and easy paper holiday decorations this winter season. Not enough snow flakes on the ground? Make some paper snowflakes of your own!   

Try making the Modern Paper Snowflake Garland above.

Or try this 3D Downloadable paper snowflake pattern #1 pictured above.

Downloadable paper snowflake pattern #2

created at: 12/17/2012

Loving this 3-D paper snowflake... it's so festive!


Snowflake cutout templates


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Eleven Handmade Gifts to Make in the Ten Days Before Christmas.

by Chris Gardner

Okay, so this worked better yesterday (when the article was published), as there were eleven days and eleven gifts to make. Still, if you step it up a notch, you could get all eleven done in the next ten days, for sure.

1. Bejeweled Domino Magnets

2. Good Dog Bowl and Bones

3. Hand-colored oven mitts

4. Button Hair Ornaments

5. Printed Memo Blocks

6. Decorative tacks

7.  Candy-filled gifts

8. Salt Shaker Ornaments

9. Tasty trio

10. Walnut shells


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Happy Hanukkah, Curbly!

by Chris Gardner

Hanukkah, meaning "dedication" or "the consecrating", started last night at sundown.

Here's a brief version of the Hanukkah Story to make your brainsponges a little more soaked...

The reign of Antiochus IV, also called Antiochus Epiphanes, was a particularly nasty one, especially for the Israelites living in Judea. His forced Hellenization (the influence of Greek megaculture) of Jews was extreme and too often violent. Though their numbers were...

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