Monday, November 29, 2010

Christmas in Bolivia

For our first country we focused on Bolivia as a representation of South American culture. We listened to a few villancicos de Navidad (Christmas carols) and found this one to share.
We read that many Bolivian homes have a pesebre (nativity) as their centerpiece. To make our own pesebre we are using the following recipe and molding the pieces:

Clay Christmas Ornaments
Mix together in a large bowl.
4 c flour
1 c salt
1 tsp alum
1 1/2 c water
If the dough is too dry, work in another Tablespoon of water. Roll dough to 1/8" and cut with cookie cutters, or mold dough into figures no more than 1/2" thick.
Bake ornaments at 250 degrees Fahrenheit on an ungreased cookie sheet for about 30 min. Turn over and bake another 1 1/2 hr until dry and hard. Remove and cool.
Sand with fine sandpaper and paint. Seal with clear acrylic or shellac.

We also found that many Bolivians attend La Misa Del Gallo (Mass of the Rooster). This name is based on the legend that the rooster may have been the first animal to announce the birth of Jesus. To remember all the countries we are studying this year we have started a felt tree. Each country will be represented by an ornament we place on the tree. For Bolivia we have chosen to make and add a rooster. For now I will share this wonderful rooster I found online. Soon I hope to have pictures of our own work to share.

For more links and sites I have referenced go to:
Bolivia Bella
Christmas Traditions in Spain and Latin America

The Ornament Recipe is loosely based on a recipe found in Feed Me I'm Yours by Vicki Lansky.

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