One of our favorite Chanukah stories is The Ugly Menorah, about a little girl who spends Chanukah with her widowed grandmother and feels that the grandmother’s menorah is rather ugly. The ugly menorah was made by Rachel’s grandfather from bits of scrap that he found on the street when he was too poor to buy a beautiful one. Eventually the magic and beauty of “the ugly menorah” come alive after Rachel’s grandmother explains the history behind the menorah to her.
Back in Bozeman we have a very beautiful bronze menorah that belonged to my grandmother. We didn’t bring it with us to Berlin so we decided to make a new menorah this year. I originally thought we would make something plain and simple like “the ugly menorah” but our family creation turned out to be quite pleasing to the eye. Designed by Olivia and crafted by all of us with Fimo clay, our new menorah is simple but vibrant. The magic of the Chanukah lights will be even more special this year as the family comes together around our new home-made menorah.