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A welcome treat for outside feathered friends (and a few squirrels and chipmunks too), is a St. Francis Tree.  This is a great project for the Sunday School and can utilize an existing fir-type tree in the churchyard, a rootballed tree or a cut tree.  This tree can have small white lights but is more natural-looking with garlands of strung popcorn and cranberries, peanut butter balls rolled in seed, suet cakes, seed bells, orange and apple slices, and pinecones stuffed with suet.  Balls and cut fruit may be tied onto the tree with raffia strands which birds will later carry off as nesting materials.  Click on this link to learn how to make birdseed ornaments for your tree  http://www.motherearthsgarden.com/bird-seed-ornaments/

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A large spot light may also be used instead of strung mini white lights.  Inexpensive garden statues of St. Francis can usually be found in most garden shops, online, and in catalogues as well as retail store chains, and make a great addition to the treescape.  Don’t forget a water supply for the birds in the form of a birdbath or basin. The tree may be left up after Christmas and replenished throughout the cold winter months.

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