The 55 Most Interesting Things Dropped on New Year’s Eve

Happy New Year’s Eve everybody! Very soon your town will be ringing in 2014 with fireworks and fun.  Like the ball in Times Square, some cities slowly lower objects while counting down from ten until the new year.  Not all cities drop flashy balls.  Some cities drop important symbols of commerce.  Others get really creative and drop, well, you’ll just have to scroll down to see them all.

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The top 55 most interesting things dropped on New Year’s Eve

55. An Orange

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54. A Peach

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53. A Cherry blossom ball

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52. A Cherry

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51. A Strawberry

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50. A Pineapple

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49. The letter D

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48. A White Rose

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47. A watermelon

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46. A Lighted Duck

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45. Grapes

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44. A Fleur-du-lis

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43. A maple leaf

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42. Guitars

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41. An Acorn

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40. A Pinecone

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39. A Conch Shell

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38. A Hockey puck

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37. A Globe

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36. A Sled

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35. A Rally/Indy car

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34. A Pelican

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33. An Anchor

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32. A Buzzard

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31. A Mushroom

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30. A Music note

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29. A Walleye

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28. A Bermuda Onion

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27. A Kettle

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26. A sardine

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25. A Beer bottle

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24. A clay jug

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23. A wrench

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22. A Cigar

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21. A Chocolate Dove bar

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20. A Crab

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19. A Chocolate kiss

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18. A Tennis Shoe

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17. A Crayon

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16. An Olive

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15. A Cheese wedge

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14.  Pickles

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13. A Moon pie

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12. Deuce of clubs

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11. Ping pong balls

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10. Sausages

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9. Potato chips

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8. A high heel shoe with drag queen

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7. Marshmellow Peep

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6. Possums

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5. A Stuffed muskrat

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4. Yellow britches

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3. A To go cup

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A plastic cup? Really? This is the first year that Savannah will be dropping a to go cup and the design is top secret.

2. A Flea

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1. A Real but Dead Carp

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Meet Lucky the carp from Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin.  This fish made it to number one because residents kiss Lucky on the mouth for good luck!

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DIY 2014 New Year Glitter Candle

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You can make the beautiful New Years candle in any combination of glitter colors you want.  This project is fast because spray adhesive takes only a couple of minutes to dry.

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Materials:

Pillar candle
Painter’s tape
Ruler
Scissors
Printed letters (optional)
Fine glitter
Spray adhesive
Junk mail or scrap paper

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You can use whatever candle you want.  I happened to have this 6 inch white candle that had hardly been used.  Start by making a straight line down the candle with painter’s tape.

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Measure the length of the candle, divide it by four, and mark it on the painter’s tape.

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Make a straight line with tape around the first measurement mark.

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Cut out a two in painter’s tape.  You may want to print out numbers to use as a template.  Place the 2 on the candle.

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Cover top of candle with painter’s tape.

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Wrap the candle with junk mail or scrap paper.

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Spray exposed candle with spray adhesive following the directions on the bottle.  You want a think layer of spray adhesive.

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Sprinkle a layer of glitter on candle over a fresh piece of paper or newspaper.

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Shake off excess glitter and remove tape.

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Repeat this process with the zero, one, and four alternating glitter colors.

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Carefully remove the number tape from the candle.  Wipe away any loose glitter from the newly exposed numbers with a cotton swab if necessary.

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Happy New Year!  Have you started thinking about your resolutions yet?

Dinner Party Tips: How to Prepare Food for a Vegetarian

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Are you a meat eater but have a vegetarian coming to your holiday party?  Don’t panic!  If you follow the steps below you will be pleasantly surprised at how easy it is to serve a delicious meal for your guest.  I have been vegetarian since 2004 and have learned what dinner hosts need to know in order to make me something I love as much as the meat eaters do.

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1. Find out what type of vegetarian your guest is.

There are many types of vegetarian and it is important to find out what type your guest is.

2. Find out if your guest has any other dietary restrictions.

Your guest might really hate an ingredient are have a food allergy so it is worth asking your guest if he or she has any other food restrictions.  After all, you’d hate to make a special dish for your vegetarian guest only to find out that he or she can’t eat it!

3. Find out if guest is looking for a healthy meal or not.

Some vegetarians are super duper healthy, but not all.  When I was trying to trim down I hated being served cheesy pasta.  On other occasions, when I had a huge appetite, I was disappointed to be served only steamed veggies.

4. Find a vegetarian dish that meets your requirements.

If you are reading this you must be at least a little tech savvy. That is good because the internet will be your best resource when finding vegetarian recipes.

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It might seem like there aren’t very many proteins available to vegetarians, but there are actually quite a few protein sources: beans (legumes and lentils), soy (including tofu), mushrooms, quinoa, meat substitutes. Eggs are also an excellent source of protein, but they are not eaten by vegans.

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There are lots of meat substitutes on the market today.  You could make a vegetarian meal that mirrors the meat dish.  I would ask your guest if he or she likes meat substitutes.

If you are still stuck just ask your guest what he or she wants.

5.  Be careful how you prepare your vegetarian food.

The best way to make sure that your dish remains vegetarian is to act as though your guest is allergic to meat.  In other words, do not use a meat dish utensil on a vegetarian dish.  Similarly, do not cook a vegetarian dish in an uncooked meat pan.

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Follow these steps and you are sure to have a happy dinner guest!

Super Easy DIY Fake Snow

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You can make decorative snow out of old shopping bags in a flash!

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Materials:

white plastic shopping bag
scissors
glitter

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Cut out anything printed on the white plastic bag and discard.

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Bunch up plastic bag and cut up bag into little pieces.

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Fluff up plastic pieces using your fingers.

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Add glitter for extra sparkle.

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Sprinkle your fake snow on your Christmas tree or on a windowsill.  Make sure your fake snow is out of reach of children and pets.

Pesto Tofu

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This nut free pesto is served over tofu and plum tomatoes. Delicious!

Ingredients:

2 cups basil
1 cup flat leaf parsley
3 cloves garlic
1/3 cup olive oil
Super firm tofu
Cooking spray
Hand full of plum tomatoes

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I got this huge container of basil from Trader Joe’s for only $2.49!

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Rinse basil and parsley and set out to dry.

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Remove the stems.

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Put garlic in the food processor.

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Add parsley and basil.

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Chop ingredients.

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Add oil.

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Mix in oil.

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Put pesto into an airtight container.  Store extra pesto in the refrigerator and use within 3 days.

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Buy the firmest tofu that you can find.  I prefer Wildwood super firm tofu from Sprouts market.

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Cut tofu into cubes.

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Spray pan with cooking spray.

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Cook tofu on medium-high heat.

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Cook until tofu crisps and browns.

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Add chopped plum tomatoes to pan and continue to cook until soft.

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Add enough pesto to cover tofu and tomatoes.  Cook for only 1-2 minutes. Serve hot.

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DIY Popsicle Stick Ornaments

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These fun ornaments are made from popsicle sticks!  Make santa, painted tree, sled, snowman, and glitter tree ornaments!  This project can be made kid friendly by using Elmer’s glue instead of hot glue or spray adhesive.

Santa Claus Ornament

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Materials:

9 popsicle sticks: 6 white, 2 red, 1 plain
paint (white and red)
paintbrush
hot glue gun/glue
scissors
painters tape

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Paint six popsicle sticks of white and two sticks red.  Let dry.

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Trim off about an inch off the top of the white sticks.

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Trim off both sides of the sixth white popsicle stick.

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Trim off about a half an inch off the bottom of the red sticks.

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Place a piece of painters tape on the back of the beard sticks. Cut your plain stick in half and glue the two pieces to the back side of the beard.  The tape will help keep the pieces from separating while you are gluing the support pieces in place.

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Glue the top of the two red pieces together to form the hat.

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Add two large blobs of hot glue between the hat and the beard.

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Add the white piece.

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Add a leftover white end to the top of the hat.

Painted Tree

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Materials:

12 popsicle sticks: 10 green, 2 plain
green paint
paintbrush
hot glue gun/glue
scissors
painters tape

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Line up 9 green popsicle sticks.

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Trim off edges of sticks to form a shape of a tree.

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Cut a piece in half to make the trunk of the tree.

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Tape the pieces together on the back side of the sticks.

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Glue on the plain sticks to the back of the tree for support.

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Remove tape.

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Glue on tree trunk.

Painted Sled

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Materials:

6 popsicle sticks painted red
hot glue gun/glue
scissors
painters tape

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Take two of the red sticks and clip off the tips at an angle.  Cut the tips at mirrored angles.

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Cut two of the red sticks in half.  Discard one of the halves.

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Add tape to the back of the sticks to hold in place.

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Glue pieces to the front.

Snowman

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Materials:

12 popsicle sticks: 10 half black and half white, 1 black, 1 plain
paint (black, white and orange)
paintbrush
hot glue gun/glue
painters tape

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Add painters tape to the middle of 10 popsicle sticks.

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Paint one half black and let dry.

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Remove tape and add a new piece of tape to the other side of the popsicle sticks.

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Paint the other side white.

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Once dry remove tape.

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Tape together the sticks on the back.

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Glue the black stick to the front and the plain stick to the back.

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Hand paint the nose in orange paint.  Paint on the eyes and mouth with black paint.

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Glitter Tree

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Materials:

3 popsicle sticks
spray adhesive
glitter
brown cardstock
Elmer’s glue

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Glue two sticks together while measuring the angle against the third stick.

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Glue on the remaining stick.

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Following the instructions on the can, cover one side of the sticks with spray adhesive.

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On a separate piece of paper, cover sticks with glitter.

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Lift up sticks and shake off excess glitter.

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Glue on paper pieces using Elmer’s glue.

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DIY Ornament Wreath

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Have you seen these ornament wreaths before?  I love them.  I saw one the other day and knew I had to make one myself!  I used red, green, gold, and silver ornaments in small, medium, and large sizes.  You can make yours in whatever combination of colors you want.

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Materials

Foam wreath
Hot glue gun and several hot glue sticks
Lots of ornaments in different sizes and colors.  I used 16 packages of dollar store ornaments.  You may need more or less depending on how big your wreath is.

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Begin by removing the top plastic or metal hanger from the ornaments.

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Tie ribbon around the foam to hang wreath once finished.

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Arrange large ornaments in alternating colors around the inside and outside of the wreath.

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Apply a generous amount of hot glue to the ornament and attach to the foam wreath.  Continue to glue large ornaments around the inside and outside of the foam.

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Arrange large ornaments in alternating colors around the top of the wreath.

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Apply glue to the top of the ornament and press into foam.  Continue gluing the remaining arranged ornaments.

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Arrange and then glue medium sized ornaments in alternating colors into the spaces between the large ornaments.

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Arrange and then glue small ornaments in the remaining gaps between ornaments.  Stand back and admire your work!

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