Inspirational Ornaments

As the girls get older it is comforting to witness the importance that our holiday traditions take on. The holiday season comes to life as we share in these yearly rituals as a family and remember the years past.

One tradition that we look forward to every year is making our own holiday ornaments. This year we decided to add some uplifting sentiments to our Christmas tree. We used these lovely ornaments (I have been eyeing them for years) as our source of inspiration.

The night before we made the ornaments, I asked the girls to think of some words that inspire them or make them feel good. I must say this was a wonderful experience. I loved hearing what they came up with. We took out a handy dandy piece of list paper and wrote them all down…

After discovering and falling in love with this blog, I decided to use this recipe and these baking directions for our ornaments. After making the dough the girls rolled it out and used cookie cutters to create the shape they wanted. It was interesting to see how they thoughtfully selected certain shapes (circle, heart or star) to coincide with specific words. Next, they used alphabet stamps to spell out the words (another great lesson). We tried to make the letters without the squares around them to no avail—so we decided to go unapologetically with the square borders. Before we baked our creations we used a chopstick to make a hole at the top. When they came out of the oven and cooled down, I took them outside (in the freezing cold) and sprayed a quick coat of clear glossy paint on them for added durability.

Our inspirational ornaments have been a lovely addition to our Christmas tree. Not only do they add a wonderful homemade touch, but they remind us of what is most important about the holiday season.

Happy Holidays!


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With over 10 years of EDU experience and a growing family, Mariah started Playful Learning in 2008 as a resource for parents and teachers. In 2010 Playful Learning received the Parent’s Choice Gold Medal, and in August of 2011, Shambhala Publications released her first book, Playful Learning: Develop Your Child’s Sense of Joy and Wonder. Mariah has an M.S. Ed in Elementary Education and was that girl sitting in the back of class thinking about what she would do differently if she was the teacher. Now she is happily working with a team of gifted educators to bring life-changing lessons to children, families, and schools around the world. In her free time she can be found taking long walks, enjoying a cup of tea, or swimming in the Atlantic with her husband and two daughters.



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  1. I loved these ornaments, but I didn’t see the recipe you used for them.  Would love to have it!!
    Linda Miller

  2. Hi Mariah… wow, I love your ornaments. Both of my kids are so into writing now that I know they’ll really enjoy making these inspirational ornaments. Thanks for sharing the idea … and for the link love 🙂
    Blessings and magic,

  3. I use different types of dough all the time for crafts in my after school craft class. I always like having other crafter’s instructions or recipes in my files, but I get frustrated when I have the choice of clicking on Pinterest, FB, email, You Tube, V, etc. but never see a print icon. I don’t want to click on these icons, I want to print. I have to go through copying, pasting, etc to get a print out of a craft I like. If I want to print it out it is because I like it and will use it. <3

    1. Hi Jean – I love the idea of having a print icon! That is a bit outside of my technical know-how, so I will have to look into it. Thanks for the suggestion.

  4. loved the inspirational ornaments but where do I
    get the letters-I work with pre-k children and they would
    love this-would be great to go on gifts, let me know

  5. This is wonderful! I’m looking for Christmas ornament crafts we can make with my grandson and we’ll be using all of them to decorate our tree along with ornaments his mommy, aunty, and uncle made when they were little 🙂 I shared this craft on my blog with a link back here for the tutorial. Thanks for sharing!

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