Courage at Twilight: Winter Holiday Crafts

A number of years ago, Tooele City, where I have worked for 28 years, began to host craft workshops for the locals.  A color flyer showed the projects, often holiday themed, and we could order them online.  On the appointed evening, we gathered to collect our crafts, mostly preassembled, to paint and decorate them.  Several times I took one of my children for a crafting date—Hyrum made a small sledge.  I have made snowmen, scare crows, pumpkins, pilgrims, and Easter bunnies.  Often more than 50 people would come—and I was always the only man there!  Covid-19 shut the program down temporarily, but then it resumed, with the public picking up their projects from city hall, and taking them home to finish.  This Christmas season, I ordered a winter village scene (pictured above), which my daughter Laura and I painted during her short trip from Houston.  Mom ordered a wood block nativity set (pictured below).  These crafts have been an important activity for me, for the chance to socialize with nice people, and to exercise what little artistic inclination I have—not to mention having fun holiday decorations to exhibit on the front porch or on the dining room table.  I appreciate my town for providing this enriching quality-of-life activity, and for finding a way around a pandemic to keep the program going.

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