Several years ago, my niece gave me a sparkly homemade menorah that she had constructed from a piece of wood, some beads, glitter, and glue. It was a terrific Hanukkah gift, and I've treasured it ever since.
This year, I decided to make one myself, enlisting help from my mom, Adele, and my 5-year-old son, Sammy. He loves to cover everything with glue and glitter -- so that's what we did.
After we made the menorah, we decorated dreidels, the spinning tops that children play with during the holiday. A coating of fine glitter made plain wooden dreidels so pretty that we displayed them in glass jars. Then we had another decorating idea: We glued a small bead with a hole in it to the top of each dreidel, making it possible to string several together as a garland.
What else needed twinkle and shine? Sweets! Last year my mom and Sammy made a batch of cookies in menorah and dreidel shapes. This year we made sufganiyot, the puffy, jelly-filled doughnuts that are a traditional Hanukkah treat. With a little icing and sanding sugar, the dessert glistened right along with our decorations.
Our whole home now shimmers and sparkles -- perfect for this Festival of Lights. And because glitter has a way of sticking to things, for at least eight nights we'll sparkle, too.
Above: Sparkly store-bought letters that we strung on silver cord complement our dreidel decorations. I used a pushpin to make two holes at the top of each letter so that I could thread the cord through. Below: My mom, Adele, and I had as much fun as Sammy did.