Do You Love Your Menorah?

Do you have artwork that you’ve bought on trips that reminds you of those places, those moments, those vistas?

Menorahs are like that for me.  We have one that was given to us by a dear Israeli cousin, z”l. It looks like an antique, but I’m guessing it’s just not shiny and maybe not even very old. Here’s a detail from it.

Making memories with menorahs

Another has the traditional brass Lion of Judah, which is virtually identical to the one I grew up lighting.  (I looked for this one for years, so our girls would grow to love it, too.)

We have a third hanukkiah that features klezmer musicians joyfully playing the violin, clarinet, cello, drum, and more. Our trumpet-playing daughter claimed this one as hers to light during her high school years.

Our tradition was to let our girls choose the candles they wanted and set the color palette each night. We’ve started that with our grandson. Options include the multi-colored twisted candles we’ve used for years, as well as the elegant blue-and-white tapers from Safed that feel old world to me – like I’m walking down old cobblestone streets in the ancient city.

Adding an oil-burning menorah

This year, I want to add an oil-burning menorah to our collection. I want something that really makes sense of the message of the one jug of oil miraculously burning for eight days and eight nights, until new oil could be purified.

Here are some options I’ve discovered in online searching, though I haven’t seen them myself.

  • I find this Hannah Miller Oil Burning Pitcher Hanukkiah totally charming!  The description on the website says, “Hand crafted in Israel and signed by noted folk artist Hannah Miller, this ceramic menorah is designed to resemble ancient oil pitchers, and is in fact a traditional oil burning hanukia.”
  • This Harp Metal Menorah from Yad Lakashish looks more like other menorahs and features King David “playing a harp, made of a combination of brass and alpaca silver,” according to the website.
  • And here’s a Maoz Tzur Oil Hanukkah Menorah (based on the words from the Hanukkah song of the same name, which is included, by the way, in our song sheets in Hanukkah in a Box, Hanukkah CD Tutorial, Hanukkah Helper Box). This menorah design, per their website, includes “laser-cut doves and Swarovski crystals” and is “decorated with prominent Jewish motifs: palms, pomegranates and the landscape of Jerusalem.” If you’re looking for something with lots of color and lots of Hebrew, this is your menorah, since it also features this verse from Psalms (137:5-6), “If I forget thee, O Jerusalem . . .”

Do you have a menorah you love? Send me a picture at ellen@jewishholidaysinabox.com and I’ll share.

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