Hannah’s House invites public to take part in event

Christmas trees will fill the Hannah’s House assisted living facility next month, and for the second year in a row the public is invited to visit the house and cast their votes for the best-decorated trees.

Ruth Weber, 87, took second place with a tree trimmed in homemade ornaments.

“I grew up on a farm in Noble County. We didn’t have store-bought ornaments, but we had plenty of everything else,” she said. “So we always made paper chains, popcorn strings, and other homemade ornaments.”

Weber said she plans to decorate another tree this year with home-spun trimmings.

“The kids who came to see the trees were fascinated that the ornaments were homemade” she said, holding up a 3-dimensional paper star that she made by hand.

“You just have to fold and fold the paper, then cut off the ends and add some thread to hang them on the tree,” Weber explained. “Then we dip them in paraffin and sprinkle them with glitter.”

She said other ornaments are made from old Christmas cards or crosses cut out of paper, in addition to a paper angel to top off the tree.

“My daughter, Brenda Rice, helped me string popcorn to put on the tree last year,” Weber said. “That’s what we used to do as kids, and after Christmas my mom would put the popcorn strings in a box to save for the next year.”

Last year her daughter put the strings of popcorn outside her home.

“She said the birds loved it,” Weber added.

Hannah’s House owner Verna Perrin said Weber’s tree will be among 20 or so Christmas trees residents and their families will trim for this year’s tree decorating contest. She noted nurses aide students from the Washington County Career Center also stopped by last year to help some residents decorate their Christmas trees

“We started this last year after our residents said they’d like to have Christmas trees in their rooms,” Perrin said. “Their families brought in trees and helped decorate them with different themes.”

She said the trimmings ranged from angels and feathers to a school-themed tree with buses, rulers and pencils.

“One of our residents loves the color purple, so her family decorated a tree with all purple ornaments,” Perrin said. “When we saw how much work they put into these trees we decided to have a contest and open it up to the community.”

This year visitors at Hannah’s House will receive a card as they enter the facility and will be asked to choose which of the trees should receive first, second or third-place prizes.

Perrin said last year’s first-place winner received a $75 gift card to share a meal with their family at a local restaurant.

The trees will all be trimmed and ready for judging by mid-December, and visitors are welcome from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily between Dec. 14 and 21.

Also on Dec. 21 the community is invited to enjoy some holiday refreshments that will be served from 2 to 5 p.m. at Hannah’s House.