Decorating for festivals and holidays is a must-do for most homes that value festivity.
One of the most common holy days is Hanukkah, with many bubbly decorations and lights.
Hanukkah is a Jewish “holy” day celebrated on different days of the year, following the Jewish calendar.
Hanukkah changes yearly, but according to the Jewish calendar, it comes on the 25th of Kislev, or the ninth month.
So, When Should You Put Up And Take Down Hanukkah Decorations?
Depending on the exact date of Hanukkah, one can set up lights in November or early December on the secular calendar. The lights are then taken down after the end of the eight days of the Hanukkah celebration. However, if you do not have strong attachments to the holiday aspect of the lights, you can bring them down in January.
Even though Hanukkah celebrations are not celebrated in many countries, it is still one great holiday that all Jewish people relate to and celebrate in different parts of the world.
If you are not conversant with these celebrations, this post is meant for you.
Where did Hanukkah originate from?
Unlike other famous Jewish “holy” days, Hanukkah does not originate from the common biblical times.
It is outlined in the book of Maccabees, which is not canonical in Judaism but is deuterocanonical in the Catholic and Orthodox churches.
The holy day is also mentioned in some Arabic sources.
The real inspiration behind Hanukkah is set in the second temple era and focuses more on what was later called the Maccabean revolt.
The revolt was started by the Seleucid Empire, which was then under King Antiochus IV Epiphanies, who was trying to Hellenize the Jews and fight against the Jewish religion forcefully.
During this time, the Selucids took Jerusalem and desecrated the second temple with pagan rituals.
Later, a rebel society was formed led by Judah, which fought for victory to liberate their church and city, Jerusalem.
The temple was then cleansed with oil to ensure it retains its pure state.
Hanukkah is therefore remembered and celebrated for this gracious victory of liberating their religion from paganism.
How Long Should Hanukkah Candles Burn?
Generally, the Hanukkah candles should be burnt for at least thirty minutes.
After thirty minutes, light the Menorah is then lit using the most appropriate materials.
The most common Menorah is the Hanukkah candelabra. This is a complete set that includes hanukkiah, shamash, nine candleholders, and a dreidel.
The process of lighting the Menorah is a ritual.
The shamash is first lit by placing it between the thumb and the first two figures and then using a lighter or coal to start the light.
The shamash represents the sun and is lit at the start of the holiday.
The second thing is lighting the two candles. Start by holding one between two fingers and the thumb, then light it with coal or a lighter.
Ensure you light it from the top.
For the second candle, hold it between your thumb and second and third fingers and light it from the bottom with a lighter or coal.
Finally, light the Menorah by holding the shamash between the first two fingers and thumb, then light it from the bottom.
The Menorah is a symbol of the sun, the main light source.
Five Hanukkah Decorations To Make Your Celebration A Memorable One
Finding appealing Hanukkah decorations is not always easy, especially if you live in an area with a scarce Jewish population.
However, this doesn’t mean you can’t find special decor, lights, and fixtures that feel comfortable for you; even your friends celebrating Christmas can admire.
Here are essential Hanukkah decorations that will light up your mood and make your celebration unforgettable:
Menorah, a lamp with typically 7 – 9 branches, is the symbol of Jewish pride and the accessory that’s quintessential to Hanukkah celebrations.
Interestingly, they come in varieties, so you can always find something that accentuates your personal style.
Whether you prefer hand-crafted artifacts or a conventional menorah with ornate flourishes, you will have a wide range of options to choose from, and there is no wrong option.
A decorative menorah shining through the window will create an admirable look.
2. Hanukkah Candles
Colorful candles can ramp up your Hanukkah décor. You just need to put each night’s candles into the menorah and let them shine.
You can pair your menorah with a few scented candles to inject Hanukkah smells into the air. Of course, good scents will add cheers to the celebrations.
The spinning tops with Hebrew letters hey, gimel, nun, and shin on their sides, dreidels are a must-have décor element when celebrating Hanukkah.
They add instant seasonal cheers to any celebrations and have grown to become a symbol of the Hanukkah celebrations.
Even better, they are available in different styles and sizes, and you can never have too many in any Hanukkah celebration.
If you want to stay active or have a crowd you want to keep busy, you can get a handful of plastic dreidels to play the dreidel game without sacrificing the season’s mood.
4. A Colorful Drip Tray
Drip trays usually serve a practical purpose, particularly if you burn candles, but they can serve double duty.
A festive-themed drip tray can add to your Hanukkah décor and highlight your personal style while remaining functional.
After all, why would anyone pick a plain tray for a celebration?
5. Holiday-themed Table
To maintain the celebratory mood, decorate your dining table with Hanukkah placemats and complete it with a Hanukkah runner.
You can go a step further to add a bouquet of scented holiday flowers.
Hanukkah is a once-in-a-year event, so it makes perfect sense to also invest in Hanukkah-themed plates and napkins to keep the holiday memories alive year-round.
Other Home Decor Ideas
Even though Hanukkah lights appear beautiful when lit, they are used more for performing rituals in the Jewish religion.
The lights should be set up a few days before the commencement of the celebration and lit on the exact day of the celebration.
They are then put off a day after the celebration to mark the end of the celebration.